In an ironic move equivalent to something you might see in an Italian mobster movie like, say, “The Godfather,” CNN anchor and host Chris Cuomo threatened to throw a random man down the stairs on Sunday after the unnamed man approached him in public and referred to him by a nickname plucked from – wait for it – “The Godfather.”
Watch the whole altercation below:
**Warning for language**
The viral video footage above shows Cuomo lecturing the unnamed man at a bar in Shelter Island, New York, after the man reportedly tried to start a conversation with him but referred to him as “Fredo” versus his actual name. According to the CNN anchor, this nickname is racist.
“Punk-ass b-tches from the right call me Fredo,” Cuomo can be heard saying. “My name is Chris Cuomo — I’m an anchor at CNN. ‘Fredo’ is from ‘The Godfather.’ He was that weak brother. And they use it as an Italian aspersion.”
While it’s unclear when exactly conservatives – or “punk-ass b-tches from the right,” as Cuomo described them – began referring to him as “Fredo,” it’s known for certain that conservative radio show host Rush Limbaugh has been using the nickname for him for several years now.
Moreover, the nickname does indeed derive from “The Godfather,” which features a character, Frederico “Fredo” Corleone, who is the less successful younger brother of Sonny Corleone — much like Chris is the less successful younger brother of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
“Any of you Italian?” the CNN anchor continues in the video above. “It’s an insult to your people. It’s an insult to your f–king people. It’s like the n-word for us. Is that a cool f–king thing?”
Does CNN’s head of PR still think “Fredo” is an ethnic slur after watching this? Because if it’s the N word for Italians like @ChrisCuomo says, I don’t understand why Chris seems so at ease with someone saying it here. An excuse just as fake as his news. #FredoCuomo https://t.co/8G8yuY80CK pic.twitter.com/1gwVyDVCob
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) August 13, 2019
Stunned by Cuomo’s unnecessary outrage, the unnamed man then sarcastically replies, “You’re a much more reasonable guy in person than you seem to be on television.”
And that’s when the CNN anchor’s gangster-like inner personality begins to creep out.
“If you want to play, we can f–king play,” he says. “If you got something you want to say about what I do on television, then say it. … [Y]ou’re going to have a big f–king problem. It’s a little different on TV. Don’t f–king insult me like that. You called me Fredo. It’s like I called you punk-b-tch. You like that?”
The unnamed man replies by claiming that he really thought Cuomo’s name was Fredo.
Given that Limbaugh always refers to Cuomo as “Fredo” versus his real name, it’s definitely possible that — assuming the unnamed man regularly listens to Limbaugh’s radio show — he genuinely thought that the CNN anchor’s real name was indeed “Fredo.”
But Cuomo wasn’t convinced.
“You did not think my name is f–king Fredo!” he bellows in anger. “Don’t be a liar. Want to be a liar, then stand up like a man. You want to be a man, then I’m here.”
“Listen, man, I don’t have a problem with you, man,” the man replies, trying to deescalate the “problem.”
Newsflash: There’s no deescalating a conflict with a gangster, son. Unless of course you’re dealing with a fake/wanna-be gangster.
Fredo @ChrisCuomo is a studio gangster.. fake tough guys who scream real loud and act tough when people are around but don’t jack when they are alone one on one.
— Udynasty🙌🏽 (@naturalrights23) August 13, 2019
What are you gonna do about it Mr. Chris “Fredo” Cuomo. Nothing. I just ran my mouth and talked tough with all my bodyguards protecting me. Wannabe gangster Fredo Cuomo. The one yelling profanities is the one gets dropped.
— FT (@saywhatsaywhats) August 13, 2019
But don’t you dare call @ChrisCuomo fredo. He’ll get super mad with his gangster wanna be friends.
— The Wyomingite (@ConservativeHic) August 13, 2019
“You’re going to have a f–king problem!” Cuomo barks.
“What — what’re you going to do about it?” the man replies.
“I’ll f–king ruin your shit — I’ll f–king throw you down these stairs like a f–king punk,” Chris Cuomo Corleone replies with the swagger of an Italian mobster.
“Please do,” the man replies.
“Why?” Cuomo continues. “So you can f–king sue? Go ahead, take a f–king swing at me. I’ll f–king wreck your shit. You didn’t know what you were doing when you called me Fredo? What about now?”
The video ends with the man trying once more to convince Cuomo that it was an honest mistake.
The footage was reportedly uploaded to YouTube sometime Monday by the channel “THAT’S THE POINT with Brandon.” In a Twitter update Monday evening, the channel’s corresponding Twitter account claimed the altercation began when the unnamed man asked for a photo with Cuomo. The Twitter account also confirmed that the man is indeed a Limbaugh fan:
On 8/11/19 in Shelter Island, NY. My source that sent this in says he was just asking for a photo and thought his name was Fredo from being an avid listener of @RushLimbaughEIB
— THAT’S THE POINT with Brandon (@THEECONSTITUTI1) August 13, 2019
The now-viral footage has provoked a wide array of responses, though the most common response appears to be one of mockery and derision.
Case in point:
Cuomo’s idea of getting someone to stop calling him Fredo is by doing something that gets half the country to call him Fredo. He proved he really is deserving of the nickname Fredo.
— superclearpepsi (@superclearpepsi) August 13, 2019
— Steven Brule (@bruleoncool) August 13, 2019
— ᙏᗩᖇᙎᗩᑎ SᗩᑎTᗩᑎᗩ (@santanamarwan) August 13, 2019
😂😂😂. Fredo, “gonna mess up your shite”. Throw you down this escalator”. Are you wound it bit too tight bro? Is this CNNs Angry World? “Don’t call me Fredo!” I’m no gangsta. Well, yea😎
— Jim Murphy (@Jimijmurphy) August 13, 2019
Oh so Chris Cuomo is all gangster now.
Right. @ChrisCuomo is no Fredo. He’s more like the wife beater guy who Sonny kicked in the street and met the wire in the car on his way to Vegas.
— Elle_Qapone ⭐️⭐️⭐️ WWG1WGA (@MillicentMacMI6) August 13, 2019
@chrisCuomo talks like he thinks he’s the star of a gangster movie.
— Michael Andrews (@Michael76170684) August 13, 2019
Not only F bombs but acting like a real gangster (ironically) threatening to throw that guy down the stairs. A bit much.
— RyobieTheImmigrant (@Ryobie1) August 13, 2019
I thought I was listening to some kind of Italian gangster movie, Cuomo must be Mafia or something, Agghhh forget about it.
— PONTIAC GTO (@pontiacgto492) August 13, 2019
— SAM (@Samarino1776) August 13, 2019