The Jeff Garlin On Set Controversy Explained

Many fans recognize Jeff Garlin from his role as the highly irreverent manager Jeff Greene on "Curb Your Enthusiasm." The long-running series — which features mostly improvised dialogue — often pushes the envelope with borderline-offensive material. Garlin has said that although the characters on "Curb" flirt with controversial topics, the cast and crew do not believe they have gone too far. 

"That's never happened. We don't think about it," Garlin told the Daily News in 2020. The comedian admitted that reshoots would take place if the "tone" was off, but never because the subject matter was too offensive. "Maybe that's why people dig our show, because it's not very politically correct and it's very honest and we don't worry about any of this stuff," he added. Although the actor welcomes being "politically incorrect," he believes it needs to be rooted in comedy. "Being irreverent and saying what you want does not constitute comedy," he told Salon in 2019. "If you're not funny, you're just saying insulting things."

Garlin is also well-known for playing Murray Christian Goldberg on ABC's family-friendly sitcom "The Goldbergs." In 2019, Garlin revealed he was nearly fired from the series for repeatedly making off-color jokes while filming. "I was saying some really stupid silly things that I can't believe that anyone would find offensive, but to each his own," he told the New York Post. A couple years later, the actor found himself in hot water once again for his on-set behavior on ABC's hit series.

Jeff Garlin was being investigated for his alleged on-set behavior on The Goldbergs

Jeff Garlin was investigated by the human resources department on "The Goldbergs," Vanity Fair recently reported, for behavior that allegedly involved unwanted touching of crew members on set. According to the outlet, Garlin made some people uncomfortable as he often hugged cast and crew. "He got away with it because he would call himself out for it — saying he was a big teddy bear," a source told VF. Garlin himself spoke with Vanity Fair, and discussed these allegations, saying, "No, I was not fired from 'The Goldbergs.' I have not been fired from 'The Goldbergs.'"

The veteran TV comedian was asked about a reported incident that involved his stand-in. According to Garlin, he simply offended his stand-in with a joke that was taken out of context. "Nothing physical by any stretch of the imagination. And the verbal part was a joke that was completely missed — because I like this guy," Garlin told VF about the incident. "If someone misses a joke, that's unfortunate to me. I don't like it," he added. According to the actor, "there really is no big story." Sony Pictures Television would not divulge more information about the matter. "This is an employment matter and it is being addressed by HR and production," they told People in a statement.

In 2019, Garlin refuted the claim that the changing political climate had hindered any comedian's ability to push boundaries. "There is no political correctness or no #MeToo movement that's stopping good comedy," he told Decider.