Julian Clary breaks silence on being cancelled over Norman Lamont quip
Julian Clary asks Holly Willoughby if she woke up in a skip
Comedian Julian Clary has spoken out about being “cancelled” over a crude joke about a politician 30 years ago.
Speaking about cancel culture in a new interview, the 64-year-old said: “I don’t think it’s new… I was cancelled, wasn’t I?
“After the Norman Lamont incident, I was allegedly banished… I think the rule is you can say anything you want as long as it’s funny.
“So when people go too far, it’s probably not funny,” he reflected.
“You’ve got to test the water sometimes. We all step over the line, otherwise we wouldn’t know where the line is,” he told this week’s Radio Times.
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The incident he was referring to happened at the British Comedy Awards in 1993.
Taking to the stage to present, he compared the set to Hampstead Heath and told the audience: “I’ve just been f**ting Norman Lamont.”
The then Chancellor of the Exchequer was in the audience with his wife, Rosemary, but never made a complaint about it and indeed the audience laughed at the time.
However, it seemed to send Julian’s career into tailspin for a while although he was back on screens within three years.
“As I’ve got older, I don’t worry about anything much. The universe delivers for you. If I never work again, so be it,” he told the magazine when asked about the key to his success.
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His biting humour hasn’t assuaged with the passage of time and earlier this year gave an X rated eulogy at the funeral of his friend Paul O’Grady.
Julian told guests at the start of his speech that he wouldn’t be swearing because he was in a church – instead replacing expletives with “blanks”.
Much to their delight mourners then ‘played their very own game of Blankety Blank’ in a nod to Paul who had hosted the popular BBC One show as his alter ego Lily Savage –
Paul, 67, died “unexpectedly but peacefully” at his home after suffering a cardiac arrhythmia linked to his ischemic heart disease.
Celebrity pals including Alan Carr, Ronnie Wood and Jo Brand also joined Paul’s family to say their goodbyes.
Read the full interview in this week’s Radio Times – out now.
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