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What did Jimmy Kimmel say about Robert Blake? Oscars host slammed for insensitive joke days after actor's passing

Jimmy Kimmel and Robert Blake. (Photos via Getty Images)
Jimmy Kimmel and Robert Blake. (Photos via Getty Images)

American television host Jimmy Kimmel was slammed online after he made a joke about late actor Robert Blake, who passed away recently.

On March 12, the 55-year-old personality was hosting the 95th Academy Awards when he claimed to be introducing an "interactive part of the show" before the ceremony's yearly 'In Memoriam' part.

He said:

"Everybody please get out your phones, even at home, it's time to vote. If you think Robert Blake should be part of the In Memoriam montage, text 'GIMME-A-Blake' to the number on your screen, or to any number."
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He then added:

"Text that to your mother if you like. Message and data rates may apply."

"How low can you go?": Twitter reactions to Jimmy Kimmel's comments on Robert Blake

After Jimmy Kimmel's joke about Robert Blake on national television went viral, Twitterati was left furious. Several users slammed the television show host for being insensitive and "tacky" and called him "classless."

Some users also criticized the Oscars for snubbing Blake from the show.

#Oscars #Oscars2023 #jimmykimmel Could #Kimmel get anymore classless? Leaving #RobertBlake out of the IN MEMORIAN segment - after joking about not including him?! How low can u go? BLAKE WAS LEGENDARY ๐Ÿ’ฅ๐Ÿ’ช๐Ÿป๐Ÿ’ฅand - INNOCENT!RIP BOBBY ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿผโค๏ธ https://t.co/jwKGj2Yp1k
Shame #RobertBlake was snubbed on the memoriam at the #Oscars Was weird though that Jimmy Kimmel would mention if Robert Blake should be on the memoriam for anybody to text yes before John Travolta was introduced. https://t.co/olYsReIlZy
I think it is outrageous that The Academy Awards - In Memoriam segment did not include Robert Blake. I also think Jimmy Kimmelโ€™s joke was way out of line๐Ÿ˜ก๐Ÿ˜ก๐Ÿ˜ก๐Ÿ˜ก๐Ÿ˜ก
#Oscars Jimmy Kimmel 's comment on whether to include Robert Blake in the memoriam was in poor taste and uncalled for ๐Ÿ˜ต๐Ÿ˜ต
ok, am I the only one cringing at Jimmy Kimmel's "jokes"? I'm no fan of Robert Blake but adding that to the bit for hosting is just weird and not funny. #Oscars
Is it me, or was Jimmy Kimmel's comment tonight about Robert Blake in poor taste?
Jimmy Kimmel and Oscar writers really blew it with the Robert Blake โ€œjokeโ€. Not funny or smart. #robertblake #AcadamyAwards
@jimmykimmel @TomCruise I'm sure joking about the memoriam didn't give you room to think about the families who lost a loved one, but you should've given it some thought. The tasteless slap jokes, Robert Blake joke, showed us YOU. #Oscars2023
Jimmy Kimmel asks people to text whether Robert Blake should be included in the in memoriam. Heโ€™s not just not funny heโ€™s a POS.
@jimmykimmel @TomCruise You had me until the Robert Blake..joke??? why just why...it wasn't even funny and was very un-classy
That Robert Blake joke was just distasteful & wrong. You're better than that @jimmykimmel. #Oscars #InMemoriam
@jimmykimmel you did a great job but the joke about Robert Blake was insensitive
Real tacky Jimmy Kimmel. Real tacky. #Oscars #RobertBlake

Robert Blake passed away due to a heart disease

Born on September 18, 1933, Robert Blake was a native of New Jersey. The news of his death was confirmed by his niece Noreen Austin on March 9, who added that the actor passed away due to heart disease.

In a statement issued to People Magazine, his niece said that the actor was surrounded by his close friends and family in Los Angeles at the time of passing.

He began his acting career in 1967 as a child actor in the Oscar-nominated film, In Cold Blood. He enjoyed an illustrious career thereafter, before getting entangled and being arrested in the death of his second wife, Bonny Lee Bakley, in 2001.

Bakley was shot to death on May 4, 2001, near an Italian restaurant in Studio City, California, where the couple had just dined.

๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ•Š๏ธRIP๐Ÿ•Š๏ธ๐Ÿ™ Robert Blake1933-2023 https://t.co/fk6vY1tiuq

The case went to court but Blake was pronounced not guilty after no evidence was found against him. He continued to maintain his innocence years after the incident.

While speaking to People Magazine in 2019, Blake's daughter with Bakley, Rose Lenore, spoke about her childhood after her mother passed away.

"I kind of didn't know where she was buried for the longest time. I could have just looked it up, but I didn't. I just don't think I was ready. And then when I was 18, I was like, 'I'm ready. I want to go visit her.' I've dealt with my fair share of sadness in life. But I know I'm going to be okay."

As of writing, the Oscars have not issued any statement regarding Robert Blake being snubbed from the In Memoriam segment.

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Edited by Prem Deshpande
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