James Corden admits he was ‘ungracious’ to Balthazar staff, vows to apologise in person

‘It was my never my intention [to upset anyone],’ The Late Late Show host says

Kate Ng
Tuesday 25 October 2022 09:26 BST
James Corden admits he was 'ungracious' to Balthazar restaurant staff

James Corden has admitted that he made “a rude, rude comment” to a waiter in a New York City restaurant, after the owner temporarily banned him for his alleged behaviour.

The comedian, who previously said he had done “nothing wrong” to warrant the ban, added that “it was never my intention” to upset the staff at Balthazar.

The Late Late Show host addressed the incident during the latest episode of his talk show and vowed to apologise to the staff in person the next time he is in the city.

It comes after Balthazar owner Keith McNally described Corden as “a tiny cretin of a man” for allegedly making nasty comments and demands of his restaurant workers on two occasions. In an Instagram post, he declared he had “86’d” the comedian from his restaurant and Corden was no longer welcome there.

However, McNally rescinded the ban shortly after and claimed that Corden had “apologised profusely” and “all was forgiven” in a second post.

But Corden later told the New York Times: “I haven’t done anything wrong, on any level… I just think it’s beneath all of us.”

Speaking on his CBS show on Monday night (24 October), Corden said: “Because I didn’t shout or scream, I didn’t get out of my seat, I didn’t call anyone names or use derogatory language, I’ve been walking around thinking that I haven’t done anything wrong.

“But the truth is I have made a rude, rude comment. And it was wrong. It was an unnecessary comment, it was ungracious to the server.”

The Cats star continued to say he contacted McNally “immediately” after seeing the restaurateur’s initial post to “tell him how upset I was”.

“[I told him] how upset I was that anybody was hurt by anything that I had done and anything that I had said and we had a good talk,” he said.

“He appreciated the call. I was happy that we got to clear the air. And I felt like we dealt with it privately… But by this point, the story was out there and more people were upset.”

Corden continued: “It was never my intention. It just wasn’t. I love that restaurant. I love the staff there.

“I hope I’m allowed in again one day so when I’m back in New York, I can go there and apologise in person, which is something I will absolutely do.”

Following Corden’s interview in the New York Times, McNally posted another Instagram update and called on the comedian to apologise to his staff in person.

He wrote on Friday (21 October): “If this supremely talented actor wants to retrieve the respect he had from all his fans (all four of them) before this incident, then he should at least admit he did wrong.

“If he goes one step further and apologises to the two servers he insulted, I’ll let him eat for free at Balthazar for the next 10 years.”

McNally, who frequently posts controversial content on his Instagram, has not yet responded to Corden’s latest statement.

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