Gilbert Gottfried Fired as Aflac Duck Voice Following Shocking Japan Tsunami Jokes on Twitter
In the Department of Too Soon we bring you comedian and longtime Hollywood actor Gilbert Gottfriend, never one to let taboos, ethnicity or tragedy get in the way of what he thinks is a good joke
He was a star of the dirtiest-joke-in-the-world documentary The Aristocrats, and even ardent fans at his stand-up sessions can sometimes be heard gasping.
The documentary shows him telling the dirtiest joke only weeks after Sept. 11, during a roast of Hugh Hefner.
So this wasn't a big surprise:
Gottfried tweeted several outrageous jokes about the Japanese tsunami over the weekend.
Among the one liners, since taken down:
-Japan is really advanced. They don't go to the beach. The beach comes to them.
-I was talking to my Japanese real estate agent. I said 'is there a school in this area.' She said 'not now, but just wait.'
Another, about the dead, we can't even repeat here.
TMZ reported there were 12 in all.
And now Gottfried is out of a job as the voice of the Aflac Insurance duck.
Company senior V.P. Michael Zuna:
Gilbert's recent comments about the crisis in Japan were lacking in humor and certainly do not represent the thoughts and feelings of anyone at Aflac. Aflac Japan - and, by extension, Japan itself - is part of the Aflac family, and there is no place for anything but compassion and concern during these difficult times.
Aflac noted it has pledged 100 million yen to the relief effort in Japan. And it said the search is on for a new duck voice.
We're sure Gottfried will get over it. Maybe he'll even relish it as another trophy from the over-the-line club. But man, this is the very definition of too soon.
Update: Gottfried apologized Tuesday via Twitter:
I sincerely apologize to anyone who was offended by my attempt at humor regarding the tragedy in Japan. I meant no disrespect, and my thoughts are with the victims and their families.
First posted at 8:06 a.m.