James Corden responds to accusations he copied a Ricky Gervais joke on The Late Late Show
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British comedian James Corden has come under further criticism this week after he was accused of copying a Ricky Gervais joke on his American talk show, The Late Late Show. Corden claims that he did not know the joke came from Gervais.
Corden was addressing Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter and told a joke that viewers quickly noted was almost a word-for-word recital of a joke that was used by Gervais during a standup routine in 2018. During the gag, Corden said: “When you see Elon Musk talk about Twitter he does this thing where he goes, ‘Well, it’s the town square’.
“But it isn’t. Because if someone puts up a poster in a town square that says ‘guitar lessons available’, you don’t get people in the town going, ‘I don’t want to play the guitar! I want to play the piano, you piece of sh*t!’ Well that sign wasn’t for you, it was for someone else. You don’t have to get mad about all of it!”
Accusations swiftly followed that he copied Gervais, leading to Corden releasing a statement via The Late Late Show’s official Twitter account. The statement read: “Inadvertently told a brilliant Ricky Gervais joke on the show last night, obviously not knowing it came from him.
“It’s brilliant, because it’s a Ricky Gervais joke. You can watch all Ricky’s excellent specials on Netflix. J x”. Gervais leapt to Corden’s defence, taking to his personal twitter account to say “ I reckon one of the writers ‘came up with it’ for him. I doubt he would knowingly just copy such a famous stand up routine word for word like that.”
This comes after Corden revealed why he is stepping down as host of The Late Late Show. Corden has hosted the show since 2015, and has played host to the likes of Kobe Bryant, Ariana Grande and more.
The comedian admitted in an interview that he was forced to miss a family holiday, which made him realise he needed to make changes before it was too late. He opened up, saying he didn’t want to miss any more time away from his wife and children.
The 44-year-old shares children Max, Carey and Charlotte with wife Julia, whom he has been married to since 2012. He said to The Times: "We had to cancel last year’s summer holiday.
“When I told Max, he looked so sad, and I had this sudden revelation of the maths: we’ve only got six more summers with the kids, before they start wanting to go off with their mates, six if we’re lucky. I knew I just couldn’t do that again. So that’s why I quit."