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Johannesburg - Sushi King Kenny Kunene is not afraid of occupying the hot seat on the Comedy Central Roast.
“You can’t roast sushi,” he said.
The millionaire businessman was chosen by Comedy Central as their next roastee, after comedy man Leon Schuster pulled out due to health reasons.
Kunene will be the second roastee, following in the footsteps of Steve Hofmeyr.
Kunene, who now also heads a political party, the Patriotic Alliance, said he was looking forward to taking the hot seat at the Comedy Central Roast in April.
“No South African will be able to roast me,” he laughed. “They will need someone from overseas to give me a good roasting.”
The 43-year-old, who is also the owner of the ZAR nightclub chain, said he was approached by Comedy Central to take the place of Schuster.
“I had a long and hard think when I was approached by Comedy Central. Having watched other Roasts, I wasn’t sure whether I wanted to take the hot seat or not.
“They really grilled guys like Charlie Sheen and Donald Trump, so I had hesitations.”
Kunene said he would be doing the Roast for charity.
“I spoke to Comedy Central about a project I am working on in Alexandra township and asked them if they would be able to help,” he said.
“Once they agreed I decided to go on the show. They committed to supporting me in realising a vital social upliftment project in Alexandra, close to where I live.”
Kunene added that the Comedy Central Roast was not just about making a mockery of an individual, but also about celebrating one’s life.
“Every Roastee they have chosen in the past has been someone successful and who has made an impact in this world. So for me it’s an honour to have been chosen and I will most certainly be enjoying the evening.”
Comedy Central is yet to choose a panel.
“Once I find out who the panel is, I will begin planning my jokes for the evening.”
Kunene said that his appearance on the Roast would not affect him politically.
“I’m participating in the Roast in a personal capacity and I am doing it for a good cause, so it will not affect my political party in any way.
“Also, I feel politicians in the country are too uptight. I am looking forward to having fun with the South African public and loosening up.”
Kunene has no doubt his Roast will be a success.
“It will be the biggest and best Roast this country has ever seen, I guarantee you.”
Comedy Central channel director Evert van der Veer, said they were excited to have Kunene on board.
“The Comedy Central Roast of Kenny Kunene offers all the elements of a great Roast – a larger-than-life personality who polarises opinion and whose life and career has had many convoluted ups and downs.
“There’s enough comic material in Kenny to populate at least three Roasts and our only issue will be picking out the juiciest bits.”
The Comedy Central Roast of Kenny Kunene Fired up by Nando’s takes place at the Lyric Theatre, Gold Reef City, on April 3. The show will premiere on TV on Comedy Central on Monday 28 April at 9pm CAT.