Norm MacDonald Reveals Why Eddie Murphy Refused to Play Bill Cosby on 'SNL 40'

Norm MacDonald Reveals Why Eddie Murphy Refused to Play Bill Cosby on 'SNL 40'

We know more today about why Eddie Murphy had such a short and awkward appearance on the big SNL 40th anniversary special.

Murphy was supposed to appear on a Celebrity Jeopardy skit playing Bill Cosby, but it never happened. According to former cast member Norm MacDonald, who played Burt Reynolds in the sketch.

On Thursday night, MacDonald posted a fascinating thread of more than 100 tweets that exposed the behind-the-scenes drama.

On tweet was: “It's my job to talk him in to doing Jeopardy! We talk in his dressing room a good hour. When it's over, I’m convinced he'll do it. He knew the laughs would bring the house down. He decides the laughs are not worth it. He will not kick a man when he is down.”

Murphy did not want to play Cosby.

When Murphy bailed out, SNL cast member Kenan Thompson stepped in to play Cosby.

Tamron Hall said on the Today show, “I respect Eddie Murphy for saying this is not what he wanted to do.”  

On Thursday, Cosby emerged from his cone of silence to issue this statement praising Eddie Murphy, who he many years ago criticized for using too much profanity in his stand ups.
"I am very appreciative of Eddie and I applaud his actions," Cosby said in a statement.

MacDonald's long Twitter thread started at 7:15 p.m. Word spread quickly on social media, and by the time it was over at 9:34 p.m. he had gained 50,000 new followers.

MacDonald ended with praise for the legend: “Eddie Murphy, I realize, is not like the rest of us. Eddie does not need the laughs. Eddie Murphy is the coolest, a rock star even in a room with actual rock stars.”

Former cast member Gilbert Gottfried was at the big reunion.

He told INSIDE EDITION, "The whole audience is revved up to see Eddie and it is basically like, 'Hello!'"

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