Fox bosses have defended the casting of Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump’s former lawyer who helped spread baseless lies that the 2020 Presidential election was stolen, on The Masked Singer.
Rob Wade, President, Alternative Entertainment and Specials, Fox Entertainment, said he had “absolutely no regrets” on the move.
“The Masked Singer is all about delivering jaw-dropping moments, which is exactly what [we] accomplished whether it was on set or with the viewers at home,” he added.
Wade joked about Deadline’s scoop on the casting. “My only regret or surprise was obviously that the reveal was spoiled but kudos to [Deadline], please just don’t do it again.
The former Mayor of New York was unmasked on the reality singing competition on April 20, months after Deadline revealed that his casting had already caused consternation among some of the show’s judging panel – particularly Ken Jeong, who immediately crossed his arms and walked off the stage.
“It surprises us all that you’re here on The Masked Singer,” host Nick Cannon said as Giuliani was revealed as Jack in the Box during the show.
Fellow judge Nicole Scherzinger looked confused and asked Jeong, “Is that Robert Duvall?” a reference to Robin Thicke’s earlier guess. It was, obviously, not The Godfather and The Judge star.
While Thicke is thought to have followed him to check on his friend, that was not shown on the Fox broadcast, which cut to Scherzinger and Jenny McCarthy dancing and having a whale of a time. McCarthy thanked Giuliani for appearing – apparently doing the show for his granddaughter – and said she was “so glad” he appeared.
Giuliani sang George Thorogood & the Destroyers’ “Bad To The Bone” during the episode titled “Don’t Mask, Don’t Tell”.
The comments – the first from any Fox executives about the controversial casting – came as The Masked Singer was renewed for an eighth season with possible plans to move the show to a bigger, more ostentatious location.
The series is is produced by Fox Alternative Entertainment with former BBC exec Moira Ross as showrunner. She exec produces alongside Craig Plestis and Nick Cannon.
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