‘It Was a Disaster.’ Jimmy Kimmel Explains Why His Roast of Bill Gates Didn’t Go So Hot

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When Bill Gates retired from Microsoft a few years back, Jimmy Kimmel was apparently called upon to participate in a final-day roast of the billionaire software tycoon. Unfortunately, Kimmel says the joke-fest didn’t go so well.

During a Monday appearance on The Howard Stern Show, Kimmel explained that although he was led to believe that Gates was on board with the roast, he didn’t seem to find Kimmel’s routine funny in the slightest.

“It was a disaster,” Kimmel told Stern. “I insisted that he be onstage with me if I was going to do this, because the key to a roast is the people in the audience see the roastee laughing. Well, unfortunately, the roastee was not laughing. Not even a little bit.”

Kimmel went on to say that the only person in the room who laughed at his jokes was Los Angeles Clippers owner Steve Ballmer. “He was laughing like a maniac,” the late-night host recalled. “Which in a way made it worse.”

By the end of the night, Kimmel said that Gates was referring to him simply as “the comedian.”

“He was like, ‘We couldn’t get Jay Leno for this?'” Kimmel quipped.

Watch the full clip below.

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Write to Megan McCluskey at megan.mccluskey@time.com