Don Rickles has been on TV insulting people for laughs for decades, but his remark comparing President Barack Obama to a janitor at a recent taping of the American Film Institute’s tribute to Shirley MacLaine has been edited out of a broadcast version set to air on TV Land, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Rickles was firing verbal jabs at MacLaine and several guests, including Jack Nicholson and Warren Beatty, when he commented about the commander in chief, saying “President Obama is a personal friend of mine. He was over to the house yesterday, but the mop broke.”
When The Hollywood Reporter asked TV Land about Rickles’ joke about the president, a spokesman for the cable channel replied, “It’s not going to make it on the air. That’s all I’ll say about it.”
Rickles also cracked jokes about actor Dennis Haysbert, who is best known for his roles on “The Unit” and appearances in Allstate Insurance commercials. When Rickles spotted Haysbert, he shouted, “Oh, there’s the black guy from ‘The Unit,’” adding, “now he works for Allstate.”
When asked by The Hollywood Reporter about the barbs from Rickles, who has also appeared on ‘The Unit,’ Haysbert replied, “I thought what Don said about me was very funny.”
The tribute to Shirley MacLaine took place at Sony Pictures Studios on June 9 and lasted four hours. The 90-minute AFI broadcast special airs on TV Land at 9 p.m. Eastern time on June 24.