Nobody expected Steve Bannon to get an especially warm welcome to the New Yorker Festival—but the backlash was so fierce that the magazine ended up withdrawing its invitation to the former Trump strategist. Guests, readers, and New Yorker staffers were outraged Monday after it was announced that Bannon would headline the prestigious annual festival, the New York Post reports. Jim Carrey, Judd Apatow, and Patton Oswalt were among those declaring that they wouldn't appear at the same event as Bannon. "I’m out. Sorry, @NewYorker," tweeted Oswalt. "See if Milo Yiannopoulos is free?" Apatow said he would not take part in an event that "normalizes hate" and suggested the New Yorker read its own reporting on Bannon.
New Yorker editor David Remnick, who initially defended the decision to invite Bannon, issued a statement late Monday saying he had changed his mind and would interview him "in a more traditionally journalistic setting ... and not on stage," the Guardian reports. In a statement posted on Twitter, Remnick explained that the point of an interview would have been to put pressure on Bannon's views, not to give him a platform to espouse "white nationalism, racism, anti-semitism, and illiberalism." In a statement, Bannon said he had accepted the invite "to face one of the most fearless journalists of his generation," but found that Remnick was "gutless when confronted by the howling online mob."