Russell Brand was reportedly dropped from Comedy Central’s Roast Battle after he was accused of being a “sexual predator” during filming, Deadline have alleged.
The comedian has been accused of serious crimes in a joint investigation by The Sunday Times and Channel 4’s Dispatches, which aired on Saturday (16 September). The former Hollywood actor has been accused of rape, sexual assault and abuse, with four women alleging Brand assaulted them between 2006 and 2013, when he was at the peak of his fame.
Brand’s last appeared on mainstream TV was in 2018 as a judge in Comedy Central’s Roast Battle alongside Jimmy Carr and Katherine Ryan. In an interview in 2022 with Louis Theroux, Ryan opened up about confronting an unnamed but well-known TV personality about being a “perpetrator of sexual assault”.
Following the allegations YouTube has suspended monetisation of Brand’s channel, whilst Women’s charity Trevi Women and literacy agency Tavistock Wood have severed ties with the comedian. Channel 4 have also removed all of Brand’s content from their streaming platform.
So, who is Katherine Ryan, what did she say in the Louis Theroux interview and why did Russell Brand leave Comedy Central’s Roast Battle? Here’s everything you need to know.
Who is Katherine Ryan?
Ryan is a Canadian comedian, writer and presenter who has appeared on a variety of comedy shows including 8 Out Of 10 Cats, TaskMaster, Comedy Central’s Roast Battle and her own Netflix show The Duchess. The 40-year-old stand-up comedian who is originally from Ontario in Canada, has three children and has been living in the UK since 2008.
What did Katherine Ryan say about ‘predator’ in Louis Theroux interview?
Last year during an interview with Louis Theroux, Ryan opened up about confronting an unnamed but well-known TV personality about being a “perpetrator of sexual assault”.
Ryan told Theroux: “I – in front of loads of people, in the format of the show – said to this person’s face that they are a predator.”
She continued: “It’s a litigious minefield because lots of people have tried to nail this person down for their alleged crimes and this person has very good lawyers, so am I going to put my mortgage on the line by saying who this person is or entering into any conversations like that?”
She added: “We’ve seen what happens to people who talk about alleged predators.
“It’s not really my story to tell. No one has perpetrated any sexual assault against me, but this person, I believe very strongly – many people believe very strongly – is an open secret, is a perpetrator of sexual assault.”
Why did Russell Brand leave Comedy Central’s Roast Battle?
Deadline has reported that Brand was dropped by Comedy Central’s Roast Battle after he was accused of being a “sexual predator” during the show by Ryan. The comedian appeared on the series as a judge for just one season in 2018 alongside fellow judge Ryan and host Jimmy Carr.
Sources have claimed to Deadline that Ryan reportedly confronted Brand during filming, but that the allegations did not make the final edit. A source said: “Contract negotiations were made as tricky as possible, is the best way to put it. In the end, it came down to the fact that it seemed like Russell didn’t have a good sense of humour. He didn’t feel he was fair game.”