It takes a lot to offend a guy like Ludacris, but some of the speakers at Comedy Central’s Justin Bieber roast seem to have pulled it off. To be sure, the 37-year-old rapper and actor has raised eyebrows and ruffled sensibilities on his own, with raunchy jams like “Hoes In My Room.” In fact, he once drew the ire of pundit Bill O’Reilly, who mounted a public campaign condemning the artist’s steady use of sex and violence in his music. But nowadays, it’s Ludacris who is crying foul, publicly criticizing comments made at the Bieber roast regarding the rapper’s deceased friend, Paul Walker.
In an interview with the Huffington Post, Ludacris tempered his critique of the purportedly offensive jokes while adding a bit of personal context to the discussion.
“A lot of people took it [too] far,” said Ludacris. “It did go too far and that’s what happens at some of these roasts … There were some jokes that weren’t appropriate. Like … there were some Paul Walker jokes that I didn’t think were appropriate and I was told and promised that they would edit those out. That’s what I’m saying. Some of those were over the line.”
According to U.K.-based news source the Independent, comedian Jeff Ross went so far as to incorporate a line from one of Ludacris’ best-known songs in an off-color joke about the 2013 car accident that ultimately claimed the life of Walker.
Ludacris told the Huffington Post he became close with Walker while shooting the movie Furious 7, adding that his fellow actor’s untimely passing was devastating to the film’s cast. He added that he is on very friendly terms with Bieber, explaining that he was present at the roast for all four hours of the event’s taping. The show will be edited to two hours for broadcast.
The jokes regarding Paul Walker may not be the only cringe-worthy moments during the Justin Bieber roast. As previously noted by Inquisitr, Bieber’s ex-girlfriend, Selena Gomez, reportedly contributed some fodder that was used to skewer the guest of honor in the course of the evening’s festivities. The spectacle is sure to be a boon for Bieber, though, as he continues to push back against embarrassing public gaffes, controversy, and occasional ridicule. Bieber’s career is still going strong, and he’s planning a significant new project with Rick Rubin and Kanye West that is sure to garner attention, given the collective star power of all involved.
Indeed, Justin Bieber remains one of the most successful recording artists in the world, and Heavy has crunched the numbers to back it up, estimating that the singer is worth somewhere around $200 million at present. The Justin Bieber roast builds on that brand by showing that he can take a good-natured rib now and again. It’s hard to say if Paul Walker’s family shares The Bieb’s sense of humor, but at least they have Ludacris looking out for them.
[Photo by Kevin Winter / Getty Images]