Whoopi Goldberg defends 'Blazing Saddles' against accusations of racism

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By Asiya Ali

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Whoopi Goldberg has rejected racism claims made by critics about the satirical western film, Blazing Saddles.

This week, Mindy Kaling sparked a debate on social media after saying on Good Morning America that NBC's comedy show The Office could not be released today because it's "so inappropriate now".

The 43-year-old actress's remarks inspired The View hosts during the December 7 episode to passionately discuss how classic TV and film properties would fare in 2022.

During the conversation, the 67-year-old Sister Act actress strongly defended the 1975 Mel Brooks directional film against social media's accusations of racism.

wp-image-1263182866 size-full
Credit: Sipa US / Alamy

The movie stars Cleavon Little as a railroad worker who is hired as the first Black sheriff of a town about to be destroyed to make way for a new railroad.

According to Entertainment Weekly, the Oscar-winning actress said the movie "deals with racism by coming at it right, straight, out front, making you think and laugh about it, because, listen, it's not just racism, it's all the isms, he hits all the isms."

"Blazing Saddles, because it's a great comedy, would still go over today. There are a lot of comedies that are not good, okay? We're just going to say that. That's not one of them. Blazing Saddles is one of the greatest because it hits everybody," she continued.

The cohost then said: "If you've never seen Blazing Saddles, you should do yourself a favor, get some popcorn, get a glass of wine, and put it on, because it's magnificent," before telling the film's critics: "Leave my Blazing Saddles alone. Don’t make me come for you!"

The outlet reported that panelist Sara Haines also interjected that there should be "sacred space for comedians" to work through potentially complex issues in culture because "laughing is literally the ultimate medicine for life and all that it brings".

The EGOT winner's comments come after viewers were conflicted over the film on social media, with many suggesting that it would not be released today.

One person wrote: "Blazing Saddles could never be made today. And the film actually makes fun of bigots and racists. Probably my favorite film ever."

Another chimed in and said: "You couldn't make 'Blazing Saddles' today. If you tried, studio execs would be all like 'This is literally just the script for the 1974 film Blazing Saddles. Why are you giving me this? How did you get past security?'"

Lastly, a third user commented: "You can't even make BLAZING SADDLES today. Because it's a very specific parody of the Western genre as a whole, and was very much a product of its time."

Many comedians such as Marlon Wayans have examined cancel culture and how it impacts comedy. In October, the 50-year-old actor spoke to Buzzfeed and defended the 2004 movie White Chicks.

"I don’t know what planet we’re on, where you think people don’t need laughter, and that people need to be censored and canceled," he said.

"It’s sad that society is in this place where we can’t laugh anymore. I ain’t listening to this damn generation. I ain’t listening to these folks: These scared-*** people, these scared executives. Y'all do what you want to do? Great," he continued.

"I’m still gonna tell my jokes the way I tell them. And if you want to make some money, jump on board. And if not, then I’ll find a way to do it myself… If a joke is gonna get me canceled, thank you for doing me that favor," he added.

Featured image credit: Sipa US / Alamy

Whoopi Goldberg defends 'Blazing Saddles' against accusations of racism

vt-author-image

By Asiya Ali

Article saved!Article saved!

Whoopi Goldberg has rejected racism claims made by critics about the satirical western film, Blazing Saddles.

This week, Mindy Kaling sparked a debate on social media after saying on Good Morning America that NBC's comedy show The Office could not be released today because it's "so inappropriate now".

The 43-year-old actress's remarks inspired The View hosts during the December 7 episode to passionately discuss how classic TV and film properties would fare in 2022.

During the conversation, the 67-year-old Sister Act actress strongly defended the 1975 Mel Brooks directional film against social media's accusations of racism.

wp-image-1263182866 size-full
Credit: Sipa US / Alamy

The movie stars Cleavon Little as a railroad worker who is hired as the first Black sheriff of a town about to be destroyed to make way for a new railroad.

According to Entertainment Weekly, the Oscar-winning actress said the movie "deals with racism by coming at it right, straight, out front, making you think and laugh about it, because, listen, it's not just racism, it's all the isms, he hits all the isms."

"Blazing Saddles, because it's a great comedy, would still go over today. There are a lot of comedies that are not good, okay? We're just going to say that. That's not one of them. Blazing Saddles is one of the greatest because it hits everybody," she continued.

The cohost then said: "If you've never seen Blazing Saddles, you should do yourself a favor, get some popcorn, get a glass of wine, and put it on, because it's magnificent," before telling the film's critics: "Leave my Blazing Saddles alone. Don’t make me come for you!"

The outlet reported that panelist Sara Haines also interjected that there should be "sacred space for comedians" to work through potentially complex issues in culture because "laughing is literally the ultimate medicine for life and all that it brings".

The EGOT winner's comments come after viewers were conflicted over the film on social media, with many suggesting that it would not be released today.

One person wrote: "Blazing Saddles could never be made today. And the film actually makes fun of bigots and racists. Probably my favorite film ever."

Another chimed in and said: "You couldn't make 'Blazing Saddles' today. If you tried, studio execs would be all like 'This is literally just the script for the 1974 film Blazing Saddles. Why are you giving me this? How did you get past security?'"

Lastly, a third user commented: "You can't even make BLAZING SADDLES today. Because it's a very specific parody of the Western genre as a whole, and was very much a product of its time."

Many comedians such as Marlon Wayans have examined cancel culture and how it impacts comedy. In October, the 50-year-old actor spoke to Buzzfeed and defended the 2004 movie White Chicks.

"I don’t know what planet we’re on, where you think people don’t need laughter, and that people need to be censored and canceled," he said.

"It’s sad that society is in this place where we can’t laugh anymore. I ain’t listening to this damn generation. I ain’t listening to these folks: These scared-*** people, these scared executives. Y'all do what you want to do? Great," he continued.

"I’m still gonna tell my jokes the way I tell them. And if you want to make some money, jump on board. And if not, then I’ll find a way to do it myself… If a joke is gonna get me canceled, thank you for doing me that favor," he added.

Featured image credit: Sipa US / Alamy