Monday 5 December 2016

Comic Oliver Callan gagged by RTE as celebrities rally for a 'Yes' vote

Sharon McGowan

Published 14/05/2015 | 07:25

Oliver Callan during
Oliver Callan during "A Noble call For Marriage Equality" in support of The Yes Camp at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin
Roddy Doyle during "A Noble call For Marriage Equality" in support of The Yes Camp at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin
Gabriel Byrne during "A Noble call For Marriage Equality" in support of The Yes Camp at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin

Comedian Oliver Callan has been reined in by RTE after he breached their guidelines on the marriage referendum by speaking during a 'Yes' campaign rally.

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The impressionist, who came out as gay in 2011, joined a host of Irish stars including actor Gabriel Byrne and author Roddy Doyle at the Noble Call for Equality event at the Abbey Theatre yesterday.

Last night, the Herald learned that the comic was cautioned by the national broadcaster for publicly giving his support to the campaign at the event.

Callan has "assured" RTE that he will not speak out again.

A statement from the station read: "RTE has spoken with Oliver Callan and he understands RTE's position on the referendum guidelines.

"Oliver has assured RTE that he won't be making any further public comments during the referendum campaign."

Speaking at the event, Callan said he wouldn't be able to forgive himself if he hadn't shown his support for the campaign.

"This is the one moment that I just wouldn't forgive myself if I didn't do anything and it turned out to be a 'No' vote," he told the Herald.

The Callan's Kicks star believed that his appearance at the event "wouldn't raise many eyebrows".

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Roddy Doyle

"I'm not allowed to do a lot of things, but I continue to do them anyway in spite of my job.

"RTE were good enough to give me a platform to come out, so I don't think it will be raising many eyebrows."

Speaking at yesterday's rally, actor Gabriel Byrne said he would be "massively disappointed" if the referendum doesn't pass.

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Gabriel Byrne

"Not only would it send a terrible message to everyone working here today but it would send a terrible message to every other minority group in Ireland."

Other famous faces who particpated include Love/Hate star Peter Coonan, actresses Maria Doyle Kennedy and Sarah Greene, writer Frank McGuinness and Senator David Norris.

Herald

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