Michael Richards Reflects on Racist Rant and Self-Imposed Exile

It has been 18 years since Michael Richards’ 2006 racial outburst effectively ended his career, but the “Seinfeld” star has since found peace within himself. During a live, sit-down interview with “Today” host Hoda Kotb, Richards reflected on his past behavior, explained how he has changed since the night he used racial slurs during a set at the Laugh Factory and revealed why he chose to exile himself from Hollywood.

“I’m probably more aware of myself,” the 74-year-old actor told Kotb. “Anger had a hold of me. I canceled myself out. Take an exodus, get away from show business and see what the heck is going on inside me to have been so despicable that night, losing my cool and hurting people.”

Richards opened up about the effects his 2006 racial rant had on his career, stating that he is not seeking a comeback. He expressed remorse for his actions, emphasizing that he is not racist and has nothing against Black people.

The actor, who was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2018, credited his health battle for inspiring him to finalize his memoir, “Entrances and Exits.” Richards hopes that readers will understand his humanity and the journey towards becoming a better person.

“Just discovering myself along the way,” he shared. “It’s really a pleasure. It’s hard work, though, in dealing with the living and the dying, I think, when I got close to that four and a half years ago.”