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Piers Morgan rips into Melbourne International Comedy Festival for ‘uncancelling’ Barry Humphries

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Piers Morgan rips into ‘gutless’ Melbourne International Comedy Festival for ‘uncancelling’ Barry Humphries after his death

Piers Morgan has eviscerated Melbourne International Comedy Festival for ‘uncancelling’ legendary comedian Barry Humphries after his death aged 89 on Saturday. 

The popular festival announced on Monday it was exploring ways to give the late comedian a ‘fitting tribute’, despite previously distancing itself from Humphries over comments he made about transgender people in 2018. 

The entertainer had described transgender surgeries as ‘self-mutilation’ and referred to transgender as ‘a fashion’. 

Morgan, whose war on ‘wokeness’ is well documented, has since expressed his rage at the festival’s apparent backflip, calling the organisers ‘gutless cowards’ in a searing Tweet. 

‘You gutless cowards cancelled him for standing up for women’s rights. You don’t get to un-cancel now he’s dead,’ the UK media personality wrote.

Piers Morgan , 58, (pictured) has eviscerated Australia's Melbourne Comedy Festival for 'uncancelling' legendary comedian Barry Humphries after his death aged 89 on Saturday

Pictured: Barry Humphries

Piers Morgan , 58, (left) has eviscerated Australia’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival for ‘uncancelling’ legendary comedian Barry Humphries (right) after his death aged 89 on Saturday. 

Australian entertainment guru Peter Ford echoed this sentiment, responding to Morgan’s tweet by adding: ‘And to announce this 2 days after his death can only add to the grief of the family – who likely will be stunned and angered by the U turn.’

Ford also branded the organisers as ‘unbelievable’, tweeting: ‘What a truly pathetic move. You people should be ashamed of yourselves.’ 

‘I really hope [Humphries’] family ask you not to proceed with this idea after the heartbreak you delivered him,’ he added.  

The Melbourne Comedy Festival announced on Monday it was exploring ways to give the late comedian a 'fitting tribute', despite previously distancing itself from Humphries over comments he made about transgender people in 2018. (Pictured: Humphries speaking at the MICF in 2016)

The Melbourne Comedy Festival announced on Monday it was exploring ways to give the late comedian a ‘fitting tribute’, despite previously distancing itself from Humphries over comments he made about transgender people in 2018. (Pictured: Humphries speaking at the MICF in 2016)

Morgan, whose war on 'wokeness' is well documented, has since expressed his rage at the festival's apparent backflip, calling the organisers 'gutless cowards' in a searing Tweet

Morgan, whose war on ‘wokeness’ is well documented, has since expressed his rage at the festival’s apparent backflip, calling the organisers ‘gutless cowards’ in a searing Tweet

Humphries died on Saturday aged 89 during the final weekend of the month-long annual festival. 

While event organisers acknowledged his death in a statement, the MICF initially decided against including an official tribute to the international star in the rest of its program.

This led to some people claiming the festival had deliberately ‘snubbed’ Humphries over his previous comments about transgender people.

Australian entertainment guru Peter Ford echoed Morgan's sentiment

Australian entertainment guru Peter Ford echoed Morgan’s sentiment 

Humphries died on Saturday aged 89 during the final weekend of the month-long annual festival. While event organisers acknowledged his death in a statement, the MICF initially decided against including an official tribute to the international star in the rest of its program

Humphries died on Saturday aged 89 during the final weekend of the month-long annual festival. While event organisers acknowledged his death in a statement, the MICF initially decided against including an official tribute to the international star in the rest of its program

But on Monday, the MICF told their social media followers they had not sidelined the comedic genius behind Dame Edna Everage and Sir Les Patterson, and were in the process of developing a ‘fitting tribute’ to him.  

‘The news of Barry Humphries’ passing in the last 24 hours of the 2023 Festival was momentous,’ they wrote. 

‘From today we regroup and start to plan a fitting tribute to his comic genius and leading role in creating a global platform for Australian comedy.’

Meanwhile, festival director Susan Provan said they had never ‘cancelled’ Humphries and were continuing to celebrate his brilliance.

This led to some people claiming the festival had deliberately 'snubbed' Humphries over  transphobic comments he made in 2018. (Pictured: Barry in character as Dame Edna Everage)

This led to some people claiming the festival had deliberately ‘snubbed’ Humphries over  transphobic comments he made in 2018. (Pictured: Barry in character as Dame Edna Everage) 

‘We have celebrated, and continue to celebrate Barry, an incredible comic artist who took Australian comedy global. We really value his contribution to the comedy festival,’ she said in a statement.

The renowned entertainer in 1987 helped establish the festival which has grown to be one of the world’s largest comedy events.

But Humphries had fallen out with organisers following uproar over comments he made five years ago that were seen to be ‘anti-trans’ – with comedians like Hannah Gadsby speaking out against Humphries on Twitter at the time.

Following his comments, Humphries’ name was removed from an award at the festival.

Humphries had fallen out with organisers following uproar over comments he made five years ago that were seen to be 'anti-trans' - with comedians like Hannah Gadsby (pictured) speaking out against Humphries on Twitter at the time

Humphries had fallen out with organisers following uproar over comments he made five years ago that were seen to be ‘anti-trans’ – with comedians like Hannah Gadsby (pictured) speaking out against Humphries on Twitter at the time  

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