LOS ANGELES - Jay Leno knows that comedy means sometimes having to say you're sorry. After Leno's "Tonight Show" aired a sketch that compared Vice President Dick Cheney's hunting accident to a 2003 videotaped shooting outside a Los Angeles courthouse, he received a letter of complaint from a viewer.
Wendy Brogin, a friend of shooting victim Gerald Curry, wrote to Leno condemning the recent sketch as offensive and asking him to "do the right thing relative to this matter."
Within days, Leno responded with a phone call that greatly impressed Brogin, the Daily News of Los Angeles reported Tuesday.
"He said, `Hello, Wendy, this is Jay Leno'," she said. "`I'm calling about the letter you wrote and I want to apologize. I just want to let you know we make mistakes sometimes and we don't mean to hurt people.'"
It's not unusual for Leno to make such calls, an NBC spokeswoman said Tuesday.
In February, he contacted Thomas B. Mudd of Saginaw, Mich., to apologize for a mistake he made in talking about Mudd's great-grandfather, Dr. Samuel Mudd, who set John Wilkes Booth's broken leg after Booth assassinated President Lincoln.
Curry, an attorney whose shooting has been fodder for several Leno jokes, said he appreciated the call to Brogin but bears no ill will toward the "Tonight" host.
"I like Leno, so it doesn't bother me," Curry said. "I don't take it personally, so I wasn't upset with him. He's just making fun, but I think this says a lot about him, that he'd take the time to apologize."