Yang was called a “Jew ch**k on a May podcast by Gillis, whose SNL casting was announced this week. His past remarks denigrating Asians then surfaced.
“For the record, I do not think he should lose his job,” Yang tweeted. “We would benefit from being more forgiving rather than punitive. We are all human.”
Yang added that he has experienced racial slurs and felt they can be “extraordinarily hurtful.” However, he noted, “But I took the time to watch and listen to Shane’s work. He does not strike me as malignant or evil. He strikes me as a still-forming comedian from central Pennsylvania who made some terrible and insensitive jokes and comments.”
Gillis made the remarks about Yang on the Real Ass Podcast in May. Vice News broke the story.
Gillis previously apologized to “Anyone who’s actually offended by anything I’ve said,” and said he was a comedian who “pushes boundaries.” That apology came on the day he was cast, as another YouTube video with a racial slur surfaced.
NBC has not commented on the Gillis issue.
EARLIER: The announcement of three new regulars for Saturday Night Live, including the show’s first Asian-American cast member, Bowen Yang, has been eclipsed by an old YouTube video that surfaced in which one of them made a racial slur against Asians.
Stand-up comic Shane Gillis is heard saying “Chinatown’s f*cking nuts,” on the YouTube video, called Matt and Shane’s Secret Podcast. “Let the f*cking ch*nks live there.”