Woody Harrelson criticised for spreading ‘anti-vax nonsense’ during Saturday Night Live monologue

Viewers have criticised Woody Harrelson for appearing to spread unfounded claims about COVID-19 during his recent SNL monologue.

The Now You See Me actor, 61, began his monologue in strong stead, revealing it was his fifth time hosting the performative skit show.

Despite earning laughs at the beginning, it was Harrelson’s final joke about a movie script he’d read in 2019 that caught viewers off-guard.

Watch the clip above.

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“The movie goes like this,” Harrelson says. “The biggest drug cartels in the world get together and buy up all the media and all the politicians and force all the people in the world to stay locked in their homes, and people can only come out if they take the cartel’s drugs – and keep taking them – over and over.”

“I threw the script away. I mean, who is gonna believe that crazy idea! Being forced to do drugs? I do them voluntarily all day long,” he ended.

The audience remained quiet during Harrelson’s joke.

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After SNL shared the clip of the actor’s monologue to Twitter, people online immediately flocked to the comments to criticise the actor.

“What on earth was this anti-vax nonsense,” one user commented. “Who approved this?” another wrote.

One person noted, “my favourite part was when nobody laughed at his vaccine joke.”

Harrelson has not yet made comment on the backlash following his SNL appearance.


The monologue is not the first time the world has seen some controversy from Harrelson.

In a May 2022 interview with Vanity Fair, Harrelson discounted the value of wearing a mask to reduce the spread of COVID-19, saying, “As one who doesn’t believe in the germ theory, I find it rather absurd.”

Per The New York Post, Harrelson was also listed as one of the few celebrities sharing articles that claimed the use of 5G was linked to the spread of COVID-19.

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