US Comic Kathy Griffin’s “offensive” remarks about Jesus at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards would be cut from a pre-taped telecast of the show, the US Academy of Television Arts and Sciences said today.
Griffin made the provocative comment on Saturday night as she took the stage of the Shrine Auditorium to collect her Emmy for best reality program for her Bravo channel show My Life on the D-List.
“A lot of people come up here and thank Jesus for this award. I want you to know that no one had less to do with this award than Jesus,” an exultant Griffin said, holding up her statuette. “Suck it, Jesus. This award is my god now.”
Asked about her speech backstage a short time later, an unrepentant Griffin said: “I hope I offended some people. I didn’t want to win the Emmy for nothing.”
The speech drew fire from a leading Roman Catholic group, the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, which condemned Griffin’s remarks as “obscene and blasphemous”.
“It is a sure bet that if Griffin had said, ‘Suck it, Mohammed’, there would have been a very different reaction,” Catholic league president Bill Donohue said in a statement posted on the group’s website.
He called on TV academy president Dick Askin to denounce Griffin’s “hate speech” and on Griffin to apologise.
An edited version of the Creative Arts Emmys is set to air on US cable television’s E! Entertainment Network on Saturday, the night before the live Fox network broadcast of the main Primetime Emmy Awards.
“Kathy Griffin’s offensive remarks will not be part of the E! telecast,” an academy spokeswoman said today. An “abbreviated version” of her acceptance speech will air, instead, she said.
Griffin’s reaction to the imbroglio, according to a statement issued by her publicist: “Am I the only Catholic left with a sense of humour?”