The Daily Show new host Comedian and Actor Hasan Minhaj (The Daily Show) replied to a New Yorker profile that claimed he fabricated several of his onstage stories.
Hasan Minhaj, an actor, comedian, and host of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, has responded to a new truth profile in The New Yorker that called into question the veracity of some of the details he has shared onstage during his Netflix standup specials and other appearances. “All of my standup stories are based on events that happened to me,” Minhaj told The Hollywood Reporter. “Yes, because of my race, I was rejected from prom.” Yes, a mail containing powder was sent to my residence, nearly endangering my daughter. Yes, I had a run-in with the authorities during the war on terror. Yes, I underwent varicocele repair surgery in order for us to get pregnant. Yes, I blasted Jared Kushner in front of him. To write engaging stories, I employ standup comedy methods such as exaggeration, altering names and locales, and compressing timeframes.”
The New Yorker’s profile piece, which went live on Friday, noted serious discrepancies in a number of stories Minhaj has shared in the past, including one in which his daughter was taken to the hospital after being exposed to a white powder in an envelope that was suspected to be Anthrax. Furthermore, the veracity of Minhaj’s anecdote about an FBI informant who allegedly infiltrated the mosque where his family worshiped in 2002 was called into question, as were other stories, such as one involving Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi and a joke about being rejected in high school. While certain portions are “made up,” Minhaj admits that the stories/jokes have a “emotional truth” at their foundation. “I think what I’m trying to do in the end is highlight all of those stories.” “I’m building to what I believe is a pointed argument,” Minhaj said in the post. When asked how his ideology will mesh with the obligations of becoming The Daily Show’s full-time host, Minhaj reiterated that “the emotional truth comes first.” The true truth comes second.” “That’s inherent to the art form,” he said. You wouldn’t go into a haunted home and wonder, ‘Why are these folks lying to me?’ The journey is the point. “It’s the same as standing.”