Singer and TV personality Nick Cannon says he is stepping down as host of America’s Got Talent (AGT) after NBC executives reportedly “publicly reprimanded and ridiculed” him over a joke he made during one of his standup comedy specials.
“After days of deliberating over some extremely disappointing news that I was being threatened with termination by Executives because of a comedy special that was only intended to bring communities closer together, I was to be punished for a joke,” Cannon wrote in a lengthy Facebook post on Monday.
“This has weighed heavy on my spirit. It was brought to my attention by my ‘team’ that NBC believed that I was in breach of contract because I had disparaged their brand,” Cannon wrote. “In my defense, I would ask how so? Or is this just another way to silence and control an outspoken voice who often battles the establishment.”
Cannon told radio host Howard Stern last week that NBC executives weren’t laughing when Cannon made a joke about the network costing him his “black card” while filming his upcoming Showtime comedy special, Stand Up, Don’t Shoot.
“I will not be silenced, controlled or treated like a piece of property,” Cannon, who has hosted the reality singing competition for the past eight seasons, wrote on Facebook.
NBC, Cannon charged, is part of an “unjust infrastructure that treats talent like they own them.”