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FutureStarrRoy Wood Jr. Brings the Laughs to the White House Correspondents Dinner
The White House Correspondents Dinner brings journalists, celebrities and politicians together for a night of revelry - but also comes at an awkward time for journalism: with Americans' trust levels of media at near record lows and many news organizations experiencing layoffs. Roy Wood Jr. from The Daily Show brought laughter and entertainment at Saturday's event with an opening speech that mocked recent media shuffles like Tucker Carlson leaving Fox News and Don Lemon leaving CNN. He poked fun at Tucker Carlson and Don Lemon The White House Correspondents Dinner is an annual tradition in Washington. Reporters, celebrities and media representatives alike gather at the Hilton Hotel for an evening of delicious food, socializing and wine drinking - though comedians may make comments that provoke some humorously cutting remarks! Roy Wood Jr. made this year's White House Correspondents Dinner an exciting event by taking aim at top politicians and media figures who attended. However, Roy brought laughter by making light-hearted jabs at many prominent figures from politics and journalism who attended. Wood, host of The Daily Show and currently on stage at this year's Comedy Fest, delivered an entertaining set that took aim at several current events. His set included taking aim at Fox News' recent firing of Tucker Carlson over white nationalist views; CNN's Don Lemon amid allegations of sexual misconduct; and the GOP's war on critical race theory theory. He poked fun at Vice President Kamala Harris for her defense of her party's nomination in 2020 presidential election, taking aim at former Vice President Mike Pence while making light of Biden, an 80-year-old former vice president, by saying he reminded him of Reginald VelJohnson from Family Matters who always seems sleepy. But Biden's age didn't consume too much of the emcee's time, as he quickly moved onto more serious subjects with one-liners about journalists in Russia such as Evan Gershkovich who has recently been detained there and Brittney Griner who was released after spending almost 10 months incarcerated at one. His set was short but packed with jokes; he stated he only needed less than ten minutes to deliver them all. According to host of the show who stood in for Trevor Noah, it had to be brief. He concluded the show by blasting both Republican Party and Obama administration for trying to erase Black people from American history, specifically their treatment of journalist James Risen who has been jailed in Nigeria. He referred to President Biden as a “diva” The White House Correspondents Dinner is an annual tradition that brings politics and media together in one gala event. Journalists, politicians and comedians from around the country come together to chat, mingle and exchange jokes at this iconic gala dinner - plus select comedians are given an opportunity to deliver laughter to the podium! Roy Wood Jr. of the Daily Show and longtime standup comic fame made headlines at Saturday night's 2023 White House Correspondents Dinner by giving an opening monologue that was both humorous and heartfelt, roasting President Joe Biden as well as former Fox News host Tucker Carlson - with everyone from Senator Chuck Schumer to former Fox News host Tucker Carlson being targetted with humorous jabs from him. Wood also honored his late father Roy Wood Sr., an early Black radio journalist who co-founded America's first Black-owned national radio network - National Black Network. Wood cited his dad's work in Vietnam and South Africa as inspiration for his own career path. He also took aim at Tucker Carlson and Don Lemon, two prominent cable news anchors who were recently axed without warning by Fox News. Wood criticized Carlson's role in pushing forward an imaginary conspiracy theory related to 2020 presidential election results; as well as Lemon for what Wood believes may have been misogynistic conduct on his part. After Variety published a report in which multiple members of both men's colleagues complained they had been mistreated, both were met with criticism from colleagues and viewers alike. Carlson abruptly left Fox News without farewell show while Lemon's termination from CNN followed less than three weeks later after Variety revealed a series of offensive statements made while broadcasting, garnering significant backlash and receiving multiple charges of misogyny in response. Wood made an outstanding case for journalism during his presentation. Drawing upon his father's legacy to emphasize how essential it is that reporters report truthfully while protecting local reporters was very impressive. "Journalism is both hazardous and difficult work," he advised, before drawing attention to layoffs in newsrooms as an inevitability of being in journalism. Watching from home, it can also be a strange event - particularly for those not present. With all the political elite and those responsible for monitoring them assembled together in one room - those not part of either could easily imagine it's some secret cabal controlling the world! Yet this event also presents an incredible sourcing opportunity. He referred to women as “raggedy in the face” At Saturday night's 2023 White House Correspondents Dinner hosted by comedian Adam Carolla, he poked fun at both Tucker Carlson and Don Lemon for their departures from their respective news networks, making several comments about President Joe Biden and Cardi B as well. Wood approaches his comedy by finding the "third side" of an issue and connecting it unexpectedly, hoping to make his audience laugh in turn. That is why he has spent so much time considering this dinner as part of his work. One of the key challenges of hosting the WHCD, according to him, is keeping up with an ever-evolving news cycle and understanding everything happening across America. Another challenge lies in managing so many distinct voices in the room; he must ensure he does not alienate any. Furthermore, considering diversity within his audience is essential; so everyone from different backgrounds can hear his jokes. He must also remember that this event was meant to recognize journalists for their hard work. Wood sought to inject some fun back into the evening with his attempts at adding lightheartedness. Since 2015, comedian Jordan Peele has been making waves on Comedy Central with various projects. Most notably he created the web series Stand-Up Playback where fellow comics review old clips of them performing to see if they still hold up, developing a pilot based on Jefferson County: Probation as well as writing a comedy special that will air on Comedy Central. Wood, who's always searching for ways to make people laugh, was at it again on Saturday night at the Washington Hilton Hotel with an audience of journalists, politicians and celebrities - an event sold-out and filled with laughter! He made jokes at the expense of two media figures who weren't present, reminding everyone in attendance that journalism is about helping people as much as it's about breaking stories. He referred to the White House as a “cabal” The White House Correspondents Dinner is always an exciting yet highly-controversial affair. Always hosted by a comedian - such as Seth Meyers, Stephen Colbert, Trevor Noah or Larry Wilmore - its host is expected to provide some comic relief with hilarious remarks and jokes throughout. At this year's White House Correspondents Dinner, Wood took time out of his speech to celebrate journalism despite recent high-profile layoffs and low trust levels in media. Wood called for support for local journalism while emphasizing its significance and highlighted reporters at both regional and local levels. He touched upon several topics during this address, including the recent firings of Tucker Carlson and Don Lemon from their respective positions at Fox News and CNN respectively. President Biden also took part in the event, using his time to reiterate his dedication to freeing wrongfully imprisoned journalists such as Brittney Griner who was recently released from Russian detention after having been wrongfully detained and Evan Gershkovich, whom the US State Department considers illegally detained there. White House Correspondents Dinner has long been seen as a chance for journalists and their work to be celebrated, yet this year President Biden took an unusually serious tone when addressing journalists currently held abroad and reiterated their importance to democratic societies. He pledged his pledge for freedom for them. Wood, who hosts "The Daily Show" as a correspondent and is well known for his humor, didn't miss this chance to bring some light and entertainment into an otherwise dull ceremony - something which guests truly appreciated. Wood made clear that he wanted to use this opportunity to speak out on issues he felt were falling through the cracks, including Justice Clarence Thomas' bribery charges, Donald Trump's early April arrest, and other issues facing America today.