Bill Cosby is going on a comedy tour in 2023.
According to Variety, Bill Cosby is planning a spring/summer comedy tour during a surprise radio interview (today, Dec. 28) on “WGH Talk” with host Scott Spears. When asked if 2023 is the year he finally might be able to tour again, Cosby, 85, answered “yes because there’s so much fun to be had in this storytelling that I do. Years ago, maybe 10 years ago, I found it was better to say it after I write it.”
As you Cosby was released from prison in 2021 after his April 2018 conviction in Pennsylvania of a criminal sex assault charge was overturned. That same year he was planning on launching a comedy tour but those plans were nixed due to Judy Huth‘s civil lawsuit against Cosby.
Huth sued Cosby way back in 2014 for sexual assault, alleging he pounced on her at the Playboy Mansion in the ’70s, when she was just 15. He’s denied the allegations, and the suit stalled while Cosby faced the Andrea Constand case. However once that case ended, Huth’s case was back on and scheduled for Spring 2022.
According to Cosby’s rep Andrew Wyatt his 2021 tour was canceled because there was a potential risk that Cosby could say something on stage that could be used against him in the court of law.
At the time, Wyatt was reportedly leading efforts to book Cosby at comedy clubs across the nation and also planning a five-part docuseries that would explore his life, his legacy as a television icon, and his trial and experience in prison. In addition to comedy clubs across the nation, Cosby also had plans to make appearances at prisons and schools to talk to people about “being better citizens and curbing violence.”
The tour was “intended to be a celebratory offering for Cosby’s devotees” and that was the “only caution that has made Cosby’s team pivot, not a lack of interest. In fact, he claims dozens of promoters have approached him for potential jobs.” The rep previously told TMZ that “the world wants to see Mr. Cosby.”
However despite five women recently (Dec 2022) filing a new sexual assault lawsuit against NBC and Bill Cosby, Wyatt confirmed to Variety that the comedian is “looking at spring/summer to start touring.”
The current lawsuit is under a New York state law that temporarily suspends the statute of limitations for older sexual assault claims. The women allege that Cosby either raped them or forced them into sexual acts. Four of the allegations date from the late 1980s or 1990, when the actor was at the height of his fame as the star of “The Cosby Show” on NBC. The fifth allegation involves Cindra Ladd, a former Hollywood executive who has accused Cosby of raping her in 1969.
“When I come out of this, I feel that I will be able to perform and be the Bill Cosby that my audience knows me to be,” Cosby told WGH Talks’ Spears.
Wyatt called the lawsuit “frivolous” and said the five women were part of a “parade of accusers” who had come forward between 2014 and 2016.