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Change of (Kevin) Hart... Actor reflects on tweet controversy

Kevin Hart says he didn't say the word 'sorry' at first because he believed the 'best way to say sorry' was 'never doing it again'.

FILE: Kevin Hart. Picture: AFP.

LOS ANGELES - Kevin Hart wanted to apologise by changing following his homophobic tweet controversy, as he believed the best way to say sorry was through "never doing it again".

The 39-year-old actor stepped down as the host of the Oscars when historic homophobic tweets he had written resurfaced, and some members of the LGBTQ community were left angry when he didn't apologise immediately for his comments.

But Hart - who has since apologised twice - says he didn't physically say the word "sorry" at first because he believed the best way to say sorry was through "never doing it again".

When asked if he regretted how he handled the situation, the Night School actor said: "The way that I handled it in the beginning was never from a place where I'm being negative or angry or playing victim. It was, 'Hey, guys, I apologised about this. I talked about this years ago and I said I'll never do it again.' To me, that was the apology. The apology was never doing it again.

"So I didn't understand why that wasn't good [enough]. Why isn't the 10-year change of a guy never talking like this, never doing it again through stand-up or jokes, being noticed? I thought the best way to say sorry is by changing, whereas some people still wanted to just hear me say it again. And that's where I think the miscommunication or the disconnect came from."

And Hart insists he spoke to several people within the LGBTQ community to understand how he should make amends, and hopes people now know he doesn't have "any ill will toward anybody".

Speaking to USA Today, he said: "It was about making sure people are aware that you're remorseful for your past and the things that you've done. And the best way to overcome those wrongdoings is to proceed with change.

"So I had several conversations with good friends of mine that are part of the LGBT community, and listened and heard the point of view that was very important, which was, 'Hey, Kevin, we just want to know that you don't feel the way you felt then. We wanted to hear you say that.'

"I thought that me putting my change on display and never going back to that was the best way to do that. And if the verbal [apology] would have been better, then I can understand that. But at the time, I didn't grasp that concept of just wanting to hear that again.

"Hopefully the people of the LGBTQ community know that I in no way, shape or form embrace any ill will toward anybody in general. It's not who I am."

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