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‘Saturday Night Live’ Accused by Comedians of Stealing Jokes and Being Homophobic

Comedians James Adomian and Jake Weisman tell The Daily Beast that the NBC sketch comedy series is bigoted when it comes to casting openly gay men.

Lorne Michaels

Lorne Michaels

Rob Latour/Variety/REX/Shutterstock

Comedian James Adomian accuses “Saturday Night Live” of being homophobic to gay men and stealing jokes in a new interview with The Daily Beast. Adomian, an out gay comedian best known for his celebrity impressions and for appearances on “Comedy Bang! Bang!” and “Chicago Trap House,” auditioned for the NBC sketch comedy series 13 years ago and did not get cast. According to The Daily Beast, the show has only had one openly gay male cast member, Terry Sweeney, who was on the series during the 1985-1986 season.

“It would be nice if they put a gay man on camera on that show,” Adomian said, “I’ve been out of the closet the whole time since I auditioned 13 years ago. You would think that they would have tried to put someone else on that was a gay man. It’s about time.”

Jake Weisman, the comedian who co-created and co-stars in Comedy Central’s series “Corporate,” tells The Daly Beast that someone as talented as Adomian hasn’t been cast on “SNL” yet “because he’s gay” and “because [the show is] bigoted.”

“It certainly didn’t help that I was openly gay,” Adomian says of his auditioning. “I think that Lorne Michaels is afraid of America’s dad: ‘I’m not gonna let my kid watch a show with a gay man.'”

That’s not quite accurate, however, as it should be noted that 2016 head writer Chris Kelly is openly gay, as is  former cast member John Milhiser. Current writers Kent Sublette, James Anderson, Sam Jay, and Julio Torres are gay, in addition to producer Tom Broecker. While “Saturday Night Live” has not had many openly gay male cast members, the show’s current cast also has an openly gay woman with Kate McKinnon.

Adomian says he thinks change will happen “sooner or later” on the series, but that it will be up to creator Lorne Michaels “whether he’ll be a part of” that change or not.

The comedian also accuses “SNL” of stealing jokes. Back in 2017, Adomian tweeted that the show gave Donald Trump the audition tape of comedian Anthony Atamanuik so that Trump could “rip off” Atamanuik’s famous Donald Trump interpretation. Atamanuik was never cast on “SNL” but went on to be the star of Comedy Central’s “The President Show.”

“That’s a scandal that’s going to break open sooner or later, I guess,” Adomian says of “SNL” allegedly stealing jokes from audition tapes. “‘SNL’ is notorious for passing around audition tapes. It happened to me. It happened to Anthony. It’s happened to other people I know.”

Adomian says joke-stealing is an “industry-wide” problem but accuses “Saturday Night Live” of being the “worst offender.” He even claims SAG-AFTRA should get involved.

You can read Adomian’s interview in its entirety at The Daily Beast.

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