After years of rumours about comedian Louis CK acting inappropriately with female comedians, The New York Times broke the story on November 9, working with five women who went on record to say that Louis had exposed himself in front of them and masturbated in their presence.
Following the release of the article, the premiere of Louis’ new film I Love You Daddy was cancelled and the film was eventually dropped by distributors. Louis CK, real name Louis Szekely, was also dropped by HBO, FX and Amazon, with all three stations featuring shows either starring or being produced by the comedian and writer.
Louis issued a response to the allegations the next day on November 10, admitting “These stories are true.” The comedian went on to express regret over the incidents, though never explicitly apologizing to the women.
In the aftermath of the NYT article, other comedians, many of whom were friends with Louis, have commented on social media about their disappointment over Louis’ actions and condemned their former friend.
I️ have immense respect for the women who spoke out about the degrading and disgusting situations that Louis C.K. chose to drag them into…
— John Mulaney (@mulaney) November 10, 2017
I've been friends with Louis CK for a long time. I read the article and none of it is good. I'll have more to say about it on my own show and not a shitty platform like Twitter.
— marc maron (@marcmaron) November 10, 2017
For everybody asking, I know and like Louis C.K. I won't defend him. This is inexcusable and he needs to address it. https://t.co/wyA5ImeDO7
— Michael Ian Black (@michaelianblack) November 9, 2017
Though he apologized for his one time comment to me, I will no longer casually call Louie a friend. I can't support what I now KNOW are his contributions to the power dynamic in this business.
— JEN KIRKMAN (@JenKirkman) November 9, 2017
It's amazing how long men in positions of power (Weinstein, Roy Moore, Louis CK) can get away with sexual assault. Men are surprised at this; women are not. Which is why we must listen to & believe women.
— Kumail Nanjiani (@kumailn) November 14, 2017
The latest comedian to speak out against Louis CK is his longtime friend, Jon Stewart. The former host of The Daily Show appeared on The Today Show this week to discuss Night of Too Many Stars, a charity benefit airing on HBO this Saturday. Stewart is hosting the event, which is aimed at raising money for Autism research, and was asked about Louis by Today Show hosts Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie.
Admitting he was stunned both by the allegations and Louis’ admission of guilt, Stewart said “You give your friends the benefit of the doubt. I tried to think of it in terms of, I’ve had friends who have compulsions and have done things — gambling or drinking or drugs — and we’ve lost some of them. Some of them have died. You always find yourself back to a moment of, ‘Did I miss something? Could I have done more?’ In this situation, I think we all could’ve. So you feel anger at what he did to people.”
Agreeing that comedy has never been a great environment for women, Stewart said that up until a year ago he “hadn’t heard, at that point, of any of it.” While appearing on David Axelrod’s podcast last year, Stewart said that an audience member brought up the allegations, but Stewart dismissed the claim, saying “…again I think speaks to the blindness that a man has, which is like, hey he’s a good guy, what are you talking about.”
Stewart revealed that he has not spoken with Louis since the New York Times article was published, with Louis being dropped from the line up of Night of Too Many Stars.
We can’t help but wonder what they’re going to talk about next time they meet.