James Adomian is undoubtedly one of the most talented comedians working today (see his hilarious takes on Bernie Sanders, Sebastian Gorka, and Tom Leykis, to name just a few), but why is it 2018 and he still hasn’t gotten his own show? In a fantastic new interview published by The Daily Beast today, Adomian shares some very candid thoughts about being an openly gay man in comedy, how he believes it’s the reason he was never hired as an SNL cast member despite auditioning multiple times, and some choice words for “fat, jealous, bully fuck” Alec Baldwin, who got into a Twitter spat with Adomian and his Trump vs. Bernie collaborator Anthony Atamanuik last year. The whole interview is well worth the read, but here are a few excerpts, including Adomian calling out SNL for its lack of openly gay male cast members:
“It would be nice if they put a gay man on camera on that show,” Adomian tells me over lattes in the lobby of his hotel in Austin. “I’ve been out of the closet the whole time since I auditioned 13 years ago. You would think that they would have tried to put someone else on that was a gay man. It’s about time.” “It certainly didn’t help that I was openly gay,” Adomian says of his audition experience. “I think that Lorne Michaels is afraid of America’s dads.” He imitates a middle-American straight guy saying, “I’m not gonna let my kid watch a show with a gay man.” He predicts the trend will change “sooner or later” but says it’s up to Michaels “whether he’ll be a part of” that change or not.
Adomian on Baldwin’s attacks on Anthony Atamanuik and him after fans started a Twitter campaign to have Atamanuik host the 2017 White House Correspondents’ Dinner in character as Trump:
“Alec Baldwin is a bully and is insensitive to people who are not as famous as him being better than him at comedy,” he continues, learning forward in his seat. “So he started a fight by shitting on Anthony Atamanuik because of a grassroots movement of people—not Anthony—campaigning for him to host the correspondents’ dinner as Trump. “There was a groundswell of people and fat, jealous, bully fuck Alec Baldwin went on television, which Tony didn’t have access to, and called us ‘internet guys,’” he says. “And I’m sorry, I don’t like having big fights with people, but it is not allowed to call me an ‘internet guy.’ I am superior to you, Alec. So I beat him up, I taught him a lesson. He got a week of bad press and from time to time I kick him again.” From there, Adomian accuses Baldwin of making a “homophobic” comment about him during their Twitter fight by comparing him to Tennessee Williams. “But here’s the thing,” he adds. “I get to experience the real joy of audiences laughing without a warm-up artist holding an applause sign, which is the only way Alec Baldwin hears applause. So my life is far more joyful because I’m not surrounded by yes men to make me happy, like fat boy Baldwin.”
Adomian, who has accused SNL of using Atamanuik’s SNL audition tape to develop Baldwin’s Trump impression, goes on to allege it’s a much more widespread industry problem:
When I ask Adomian specifically about the charge he made regarding SNL stealing jokes, he says, “That’s a scandal that’s going to break open sooner or later, I guess. SNL is notorious for passing around audition tapes. It happened to me. It happened to Anthony. It’s happened to other people I know.” Adomian calls it an “industry-wide problem” of creators using people’s auditions to create shows without hiring those people. “SNL is probably the worst offender,” he says, “but it’s an industry-wide problem and SAG-AFTRA should get involved.”
Adomian also opens up about homophobia in the industry and why so many talented gay male comedians aren’t being given TV shows of their own, telling The Daily Beast that “most of it is due to the ‘cowardice’ of executives who will say, ‘I’m not homophobic, but I’m afraid that my audience is.’” Head over to The Daily Beast to read the full interview.
Photo by Mindy Tucker.