Eddie Murphy refused to play troubled comedian Bill Cosby in a sketch during the Saturday Night Live 40th anniversary show on Sunday.
The actor returned to the comedy series after more than 30 years for the special but did not take part in any of the sketches and simply gave a brief speech.
Former SNL cast member and writer Norm Macdonald has revealed over a series of messages on Twitter. that he tried to convince Murphy to play Cosby during the Celebrity Jeopardy segment, but Murphy turned it down as he did not want to poke fun at the star, who has faced a long line of sex abuse allegations in recent months.
Macdonald writes, “So, the talks were underway. ‘… Eddie doesn’t feel comfortable’, ‘Eddie says maybe it’s ok since he’s doing pre-allegation Cosby’… We talk in his dressing room (for) a good hour. When it’s over, I’m convinced he’ll do it… He doesn’t…
“He knew the laughs would bring the house down. Eddie Murphy knows what will work on SNL better than any one… Eddie decides the laughs are not worth it. He will not kick a man when he is down…. Eddie Murphy, I realize, is not like the rest of us. Eddie does not need the laughs.”
Tweets by @normmacdonald
Cosby was played by SNL actor Kenan Thompson during the anniversary episode.