Terry Crews apologizes to Gabrielle Union for invalidating her talent show experience
Los Angeles — Terry Crews apologized for his comments about Gabrielle Union’s claims of mistreatment on “America’s Got Talent,” saying he didn’t mean to “invalidate” her experience and regrets letting down other black women.
On the “Today” show last week, Crews, a Flint native, said that Union’s allegations of racism on the production didn’t reflect his experience as the NBC talent show's host. Union was dropped as a judge on the series after one season.
In a series of posts Friday on his Twitter account, Crews recounted telling Kevin Hart that he had to “acknowledge the pain of other people.”
“Right now I have to do the same thing. I want to apologize for the comments I made. I realize there are a lot of Black women hurt and let down by what I said and also by what I didn’t say,” Crews wrote.
In a tweet addressed directly to Union, he said it was “never my intention to invalidate your experience — but that is what I did. I apologize.”
He failed to offer support to Union out of his desire to be “professionally neutral as your co-worker,” Crews wrote.
When he was asked on NBC’s “Today” about Union and the show, he said that as a man he couldn’t address the claims of sexism, adding, "but I can speak on behalf of any racism comments. That was never my experience."
The trade publication Variety reported last fall that Union, who is African American, believed she was fired because she had asked NBC and the show’s producers to respond to an environment that tolerated racist jokes and remarks. That included what Union said were multiple notes from producers saying she was wearing her hair “too black” for the “America’s Got Talent” audience.
In December, NBC began an investigation of her claims.
"I’m very confident if we learn something ... we will put new practices in place if necessary,” Paul Telegdy, the network's entertainment chief, told a TV critics meeting in early January.