Chris Redd was punched in the face prior to a Wednesday night (26 October) performance at the Comedy Cellar in Manhattan.
Redd, 37, was arriving by car to the venue at 9:40pm when a man, allegedly dressed as security personnel, charged and attacked him.
The incident, which took place in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village neighbourhood, occurred amidst growing concerns about the physical safety of comedians – a conversation that intensified in March 2022 when Will Smith slapped Chris Rock during a live broadcast of the Oscars.
Rock, a presenter at the Hollywood award ceremony, had just delivered a joke concerning the physical appearance of Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
In July, Smith issued a lengthy video apology, which Rock denounced during a stand-up set in London. “F*** your hostage video,” the comic said in September.
Redd is best known for appearing on SNL from 2017 until his departure earlier this year.
“Being a part of SNL has been the experience of a lifetime. Five years ago, I walked into 30 Rock knowing that this was an amazing opportunity for growth,” Redd said in a statement in September. “Now, with friends who have become family and memories I will cherish forever, I’m grateful to Lorne Michaels and to the entire SNL organisation. From the bottom of my heart, I can’t thank you all enough.”
Next up for Redd is his own HBO comedy special Chris Redd: Why Am I Like This?.
The special, executive produced by Conan O’Brien, is set to be released in the US on 3 November.