The Bee Movie star says his former sitcom pal wants to return to work
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Credit: Peter Kramer/Getty; Jason Merritt/FilmMagic

Jerry Seinfeld says his former Seinfeld costar Michael Richards is still haunted by his racist outburst during a live standup show last November but is hopeful he can eventually return to show business.

Speaking to Larry King on CNN Thursday night, Seinfeld, 53, said Richards, 58, is doing better than he was – but continues to deeply regret what he said.

“He is doing good,” Seinfeld said. “He still feels bad. That’s the terrible thing about something like that, is you never quite get it out of your head that you hurt people. But he did what he could [in apologizing].”

At the standup show at The Laugh Factory in Los Angeles Richards hurled racial epithets at African American audience members who apparently had heckled him. Immediately coming under attack for his remarks. Richards quickly issued an apology.

‘It Was a Temper Thing’

On Thursday, the Bee Movie star reiterated that Richards, who played Kramer on Seinfeld, is not racist. “I think people know what it’s like to lose their temper, and it was a bad moment. And it was a bad choice,” he said. “But I think it was just a temper thing.”

Still, he suggested, coming to terms with an episode like that can be a long road.

“I think other people can forgive you. It’s harder to forgive yourself, I would say,” Seinfeld said. “If you’re a sensitive person, if you’re not [a racist], and you hurt someone, you never forgive yourself. That’s probably the most difficult part.”

Seinfeld added that Richards is slowly looking to hop back into showbiz. Asked if anyone would hire him, Seinfeld replied, “Absolutely. Why not? I mean, we’re human beings. None of us is without a mistake.”