David Spade Tells the Full Story of Why Eddie Murphy Stayed Away From Saturday Night Live for So Long

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Photo: Rochelle Brodin/Kris Connor/WireImage/Getty Images

David Spade's memoir Almost Interesting comes out October 27, and Salon has an excerpt from the part where he talks about Eddie Murphy. For a while, Murphy held a long-standing grudge against Saturday Night Live in part because of a joke David Spade made during his "Hollywood Minute" bit. Specifically, this joke: Spade shows a picture of Murphy around the time of Vampires in Brooklyn and said, "Look, children! It's a falling star. Make a wish."

After the sketch aired, Murphy was blowing up the phones at SNL. Spade dodged the calls and started "freaking the fuck out." Then he enlisted every white comic's black friend, Chris Rock, for help ("He’s my black friend, so any black-related problems go across his desk. He gets cc’d on everything," he writes), and Rock told him that he'd better call Murphy back. “You better call him; you don’t want him coming down here. Don’t forget, he’s still a black guy," said Rock, according to Spade.

So Spade called him back and got a tongue-lashing. He writes:

"David Spade, who the fuck do you think you are?!! Honestly? Who. The. Fuck. Going after ME?? You dumb motherfucker! I’m off-limits, don’t you know that? You wouldn’t have a job if it weren’t for me. Talking shit about me??” Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera . . . on and on and on and making me feel like shit.

I barely spoke. I just stared at Rock in disbelief. It was so much worse than I had imagined. I wanted to apologize, explain the joke, anything, but nothing came out. Here was one of my favorite comedians of all time ripping me a new asshole. I had worshipped this dude for years, knew every line of his stand-up. And now he hated me. Like, really really hated me. The opposite of Sally Field.

Spade says he gets it, and that the beef is now behind them. In a 2011 Rolling Stone interview, Murphy said, "I don't hate David Spade, I'm cool with him." And it's true! Spade ran into Murphy a month after the interview. They shook hands and Murphy told him to "Take it easy." They're practically besties.