'Seinfeld' star Michael Richards says racist rant was 'despicable' and led to self-imposed Hollywood exile

It has been 18 years since Michael Richards' 2006 racial outburst effectively ended his career, but the "Seinfeld" star has since found peace within himself.  During a live, sit-down interview with "Today" host Hoda Kotb, Richards reflected on his past behavior, explained how he has changed since the night he used racial slurs during a set at the Laugh Factory and revealed why he chose to exile himself from Hollywood.   "I'm probably more aware of myself," the 74-year-old actor told Kotb. "Anger had a hold of me. I canceled myself out. Take an exodus, get away from show business and see what the heck is going on inside me to have been so despicable that night, losing my cool and hurting people." "Did you make amends," Kotb asked.  'SEINFELD' STAR MICHAEL RICHARDS SAYS HE'S 'NOT LOOKING FOR A COMEBACK' AFTER 2006 RACIAL OUTBURST "I think so," said Richards. "Certainly getting to a place where I could forgive myself, because I have to move on and be true blue about that." Richards, whose memoir "Entrances and Exits" was released on Tuesday, told People magazine last month that he is in no way "looking for a comeback." LIKE WHAT YOU’RE READING? CLICK HERE FOR MORE ENTERTAINMENT NEWS "I was immediately sorry the moment I said it onstage," said Richards, who famously portrayed "Seinfeld" character Cosmo Kramer from 1989 to 1998. "I'm not looking for a comeback." "My anger was all over the place, and it came through hard and fast," he continued. "Anger is quite a force. But it happened. Rather than run from it, I dove into the deep end and tried to learn from it. It hasn’t been easy. Crisis managers wanted me to do damage control. But as far as I was concerned, the damage was inside of me. It was time to figure out where all the anger was coming from." "I'm not racist," he added. "I have nothing against Black people. The man who told me I wasn’t funny had just said what I’d been saying to myself for a while. I felt put down. I wanted to put him down." CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR THE ENTERTAINMENT NEWSLETTER Richards, who was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2018, said his health battle inspired him to finalize his memoir. "I made it," Richards said of undergoing successful treatment at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. "I beat it, and that certainly motivated me to get at the book because I went through a big review of my life." While Richards does not expect forgiveness from everyone, he hopes those who choose to read his book will come out of it with one takeaway.  "That I’m human," he told Kotb. "There’s a good, bad and an ugly coursing through all these things. Striving to be a better person." "Just discovering myself along the way," he continued. "It's really a pleasure. It's hard work, though, in dealing with the living and the dying, I think, when I got close to that four and a half years ago."

Top News

© 2000- Artmotion Network   Terms of Use  Help  Advertise  Add News  Feedback Make donation