CNN finally decided to fire comedian Kathy Griffin after she posed with a “beheaded” and bloody Donald Trump mask. Griffin issued an apology for the insensitive photo shoot, but it wasn’t enough to save the outspoken comedian’s job as a New Year’s Eve correspondent.
CNN confirmed the decision on Twitter.
Previously, CNN released a statement, saying that it was “evaluating” its relationship with the comedian.
“We found what she did disgusting and offensive,” a CNN spokesperson said on Tuesday. “We are pleased to see she has apologized and asked that the photos be taken down. We are evaluating our New Year’s Eve coverage and have made no decisions at this point.”
The controversy began when celebrity photographer Tyler Shields posted the photos from his recent photoshoot with Griffin. One image showed Griffin, who has frequently criticized Trump, holding up a Trump mask that was bloodied to make it look like the president had been beheaded. Giffin and Shields also released a video, which is available on YouTube.
Griffin later issued an apology video, admitting that she went too far.
“I sincerely apologize. I am just now seeing the reaction of these images, I’m a comic, I crossed the line… I went way too far,” she said in the video. She said she knows it wasn’t funny, adding, “I get it, I made a lot of mistakes in my career, I will continue, I asked your forgiveness.”
Griffin’s photos were condemned by both sides of the political aisle and were not ignored by the President. “Kathy Griffin should be ashamed of herself. My children, especially my 11 year old son, Barron, are having a hard time with this. Sick,” Trump himself tweeted.
First Lady Melania Trump questioned the mental health of anyone who would take such photos.
“This is vile and wrong. It is never funny to joke about killing a president,” Chelsea Clinton, the daughter of Hillary Clinton, wrote.
According to TMZ‘s sources, 11-year-old Barron Trump saw the Griffin photo on television and genuinely thought that something happened to his father. This likely inspired the reaction from the First Family.
Griffin also lost an endorsement deal with Squatty Potty, a company that makes footstools for toilets. “It was deeply inappropriate and runs contrary to the core values our company stands for,” CEO Bobby Edwards said in a statement. The company pulled all advertising with Griffin.
Before she was fired today, Griffin hosted CNN’s annual New Year’s Day program with Anderson Cooper. She’s also a two-time Emmy winner for her reality show Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List.
“For the record, I am appalled by the photo shoot Kathy Griffin took part in. It is clearly disgusting and completely inappropriate,” Cooper wrote on Twitter.
As for Shields, he hasn’t said anything about the photoshoot since he made a joke about it before it was released. “Can you go to jail for making an artistic statement??? Asking for a friend… @kathygriffin,” he tweeted. Shields did take the video off his YouTube page.