Gilbert Gottfried has been fired as the voice of the 'Aflac Duck' after making a series of crude jokes about the Japanese earthquake and tsunami.
Gilbert Gottfried, the American comedian and television personality, has been sacked by insurance company Aflac Inc after joking about the current devastation in Japan on his Twitter page, reports the Toronto Sun.The insurance company does 75 per cent of its business in Japan and plans to donate $100 million to the disaster relief. Their stock has already fallen 3 per cent to $53.90 on the New York Stock Exchange. Gottfried has yet to apologise for the jokes, which included, "I just split up with my girlfriend, but like the Japanese say, they'll be another one floating by any minute now". Back in 2001, the comedian apparently made light of the September 11th attacks in his routine just three weeks after the tragedy. Aflac Inc confirmed Gottfried's sacking and issued a statement on Monday (14th March 2011) that read, "Gilbert's recent comments about the crisis in Japan were lacking in humor and certainly do not represent the thoughts and feelings of anyone at Aflac. There is no place for anything but compassion and concern during these difficult times".
A "nationwide casting call" is now underway to find Gilbert Gottfried's successor as the voice of the talking duck.