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Monday, October 25, 2021

Sir Billy Connolly: I’d be cancelled by the woke brigade if I started out in comedy today

‘No bravery’ in comedy

In an interview to promote his autobiography Windswept & Interesting, the comedian spoke to New Zealand’s radio network Newstalk ZB.

He said: “There’s a show here in America with all black comedians, men and women, and they are totally ruthless, they are totally without political correctness and they have always got me on the floor howling with laughter. It’s just the cheek of them and the bravery of it.

“There was a comedian who had a series on television and the suits involved were going to take it off at the first commercial break. They have got no bravery. We need people who give people time and a chance to develop and all that kind of stuff.”

He added: “I think things have changed forever [with political correctness] but you never know.”

The comedian announced his retirement from stand-up in 2018, having been diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2013, but has continued to make documentaries.

In last year’s ITV special, It’s Been A Pleasure, which was widely perceived as marking the end of the comedian’s career, he said: “I have done my stand-up. I did it for 50 years. I did it quite well and it is time to stop.

“My illness, my Parkinson’s disease, has rendered me different. It would either mean renewing what I do and doing something else, or give up what I did – and that’s what I’ve done.”

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