Steve Harvey has reflected on his much talked about interview with Mo’Nique when they clashed over the actress claiming she was blackballed by Hollywood, particularly Oprah Winfrey, Lee Daniels and Tyler Perry for not promoting the film “Precious” more.
Daniels was the director of the film and Winfrey, along with Perry produced it.
In one of the most heated parts of the exchange, the two comedians clashed on the topic of integrity after Harvey said: “This ain’t a Black man’s game, this ain’t a white man’s game, This is the money game!”
“Before the money game, it’s called the integrity game, and we’ve lost the integrity worrying about the money,” Mo’Nique shot back.
“If I crumble, my children crumble, my grandchildren crumble,” Harvey responded. “I cannot, for the sake of my integrity, stand up here and let everybody that’s counting on me crumble so I can make a statement.”
Harvey caught a lot of backlash for telling the actress to seemingly put money before principles, which he now regrets saying. Plus, “The Family Feud” host also explained what he really meant when he used the word “integrity.”
“I take full responsibility for it, it came out my mouth, so I can’t say that I didn’t say it,” he told People on Sunday. “But to people that really know me, I have lived my whole life as a man of integrity. So when I was referring to ‘integrity’ in that interview, I was talking about the method in which things were being done, and that is all it was.”
“I never questioned anybody’s principles or anybody’s causes,” he added. “I was merely questioning, for the 50-minute interview, the method that she chose going about doing it, and I regret that looking back at it now, because that was a bad choice of words.”
Among some of the people who slammed Harvey for his opinion after the interview was famed journalist Jemele Hill.
“To me, the most disappointing thing Steve Harvey said in that entire exchange was, ‘the best thing you can do for poor people is not be one of them.’ Truly one of those statements you make when you have lost touch,” she tweeted on Feb. 14
In his People interview, Harvey said he wants his young fans, as well as his longtime supporters, to know that he was speaking with his “head” and not his “heart” during the exchange.
But regardless of their disagreement, and despite Mo’nique seemingly being frozen out by Hollywood, she’s continued to book some high profile gigs, including a Las Vegas residency that ended last month.
Plus, the Baltimore native has a Mother’s Day Comedy Special scheduled at the Apollo Theater in New York City on May 11.