Gilbert Gottfried, standup comedian, roast regular and generally awkward human being lost his cushy gig as the voice of the Aflac duck on Monday (March 14) thanks to some insensitive jokes about the Japanese earthquake posted to Twitter.
In the tweets, which have since been deleted from his account, Gottfried — among other things — shared the joke “I just split up with my girlfriend, but like the Japanese say, ‘They’ll be another one floating by any minute now.'”
“Gilbert’s recent comments about the crisis in Japan were lacking in humor and certainly do not represent the thoughts and feelings of anyone at Aflac,” said Aflac Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Michael Zuna in a press release.
Aflac doesn’t plan to scrap the duck, though. A nationwide casting call for the next voice of the Aflac duck will be getting underway ASAP, according to EW.
Gottfried isn’t the only celeb, though, to use Japan’s quake and tsunami as [failed] comic fodder.
On Friday (March 11), 50 Cent – whose Twitter brain droppings have been getting more Kanye-esque of late — tweeted, “Look this is very serious people I had to evacuate all my hoe’s from LA, Hawaii and Japan. I had to do it. Lol.”
The rapper later posted an apology.
Also on Friday “Family Guy” writer/producer Alec Sulkin tweeted “If you wanna feel better about this earthquake in Japan, google ‘Pearl Harbor death toll.'” The next day, however, he backtracked, tweeting:
Yesterday death toll = 200. Today = 10 thousand. I am sorry for my insensitive tweet. It’s gone.