Roseanne axed over racist tweet, TEN pulls episodes

In what must be a television first, the US network ABC has cancelled its Roseanne revival following a racist tweet by star Roseane Barr.

Barr attacked Valerie Jarrett, a senior adviser to former President Barack Obama, in a since-deleted tweet in which she said “Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj.” Barr subsequently apologised: “I apologize to Valerie Jarrett and to all Americans. I am truly sorry for making a bad joke about her politics and her looks. I should have known better. Forgive me — my joke was in bad taste.”

Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show,” ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey said today.

Walt Disney Co. CEO Bob Iger also weighed in on the decision to cancel Roseanne: “There was only one thing to do here, and that was the right thing,” he tweeted.

Showrunner Bruce Helford added in a statement of his own: “On behalf of all the writers and producers, we worked incredibly hard to create an amazing show. I was personally horrified and saddened by the comments and in no way do they reflect the values of the people who worked so hard to make this the iconic show that it is.”

Channel TEN confirmed this morning the series was being pulled, effective immediately.


Rerun episodes have been pulled from Hulu, Paramount Network, TV Land, and CMT.

In the wake of the backlash, Wanda Sykes, a consulting producer said she would not be returning to the second season

Following the cancellation, executive producer Tome Werner issued a statement saying, “I support ABC’s decision to cancel the show in the wake of Roseanne Barr’s most recent reprehensible tweets. Our goal was to promote constructive discussion about the issues that divide us. It represented the work of hundreds of talented people. I hope the good work done is not totally eclipsed by these abhorrent and offensive comments, and that Roseanne seeks the help she so clearly needs.”

Series co-star and executive producer Sara Gilbert then condemned Barr’s comments, saying, “Roseanne’s recent comments about Valerie Jarrett, and so much more, are abhorrent and do not reflect the beliefs of our cast and crew or anyone associated with our show. I am disappointed in her actions to say the least. This is incredibly sad and difficult for all of us, as we’ve created a show that we believe in, are proud of, and that audiences love — one that is separate and apart from the opinions and words of one cast member.”

Roseanne Barr has quit Twitter.

Further update:

Barr has returned to Twitter to say: “Don’t feel sorry for me, guys!!-I just want to apologize to the hundreds of people, and wonderful writers (all liberal) and talented actors who lost their jobs on my show due to my stupid tweet. I will be on Joe Rogan’s podcast friday” adding “losing my show is 0 compared 2 being labelled a racist over one tweet-that I regret even more”

Foxtel has dropped Roseanne episodes due today and tomorrow. After that their license had expired anyway.

Was ABC network right to axe Roseanne?

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Source: Hollywood Reporter, Variety


  1. daveinprogress

    This post deserves 100 comments – that’ll be me hopefully! This certainly changes the landscape in the business. If such a lucrative show can be extricated lock stock and barrel resulting from bad behaviour by its star then it puts other front of camera personnel and others to use social media more thoughtfully. If that is the takeaway, then it’s not a bad thing.

  2. Shoudy Chen

    I was very disgusted about Roseanne’s racist tweet that she posted. When I read the tweet, I noticed that she had crossed the line. This sort of behaviour was not on. Well done to ABC for taking legal action over this show.

  3. And yet Mel Gibson is still working… It’s odd. This woman should not have been allowed near Twitter. I feel sorry for all the cast and crew who now need to find new jobs.

  4. Another twitterer loses its grip on the perch and falls to the floor where no amout of preening can get those wings to work.again. In another cage the golden canary has stronger claws and an iron-clad contract for a 4 year supply of birdseed.

  5. ABC should’ve known what they were getting, but Roseanne Barr also should’ve known better & not risked things. Guess she just didn’t think what might happen but now because of her actions a whole lot of people are out of a job. Then fans of the show miss out all because of her. Not at all surprised that Ten pulled the episodes but its such a shame since we were only half way through & it would be nice to see the rest of them. Regardless of her personal opinions the show had its moments & I’ve found the new eps interesting & fun to watch. Mostly I feel sorry for the cast & crew though as its such a shame for them to lose their job all due to one person

    I had the same thought about just writing her out – who cares if she’s the titular character, not like it wouldn’t be the first time

    • Armchair Analyst

      Agree, the revival of the show was great i enjoyed it i also enjoy the reruns too. ABC should have known better. I dont think that this will be a turning point though. i believe it was easier to sack the show because of Rosanne and her views on Trump. I guess we will have to see. The show is now untouchable. Nobody will go near it not even FOX because of Money. New FOX is not fit for this show.

  6. This proves everyone has to be really careful what they post online. Once submitted it’s too late. Could someone please let me know what Eleven had on at 3pm in place of Roseanne this afternoon?

  7. Seriously, was this revival ever going to end any other way?
    This was sadly predictable.
    It does give me some hope that there is still a line that can be crossed in Trump’s America though.

  8. It’s interesting how many people apparently cannot separate the artist from their art. But I wonder how many other artists that people admire or adore either hold or held objectionable views or did terrible things you just might not know about. Wagner, Degas and T.S. Eliot, to name just three, were all deeply anti-semitic. Elvis and Chuck Berry both had a serious penchant for under-age girls. You make a very long list of artists who were deeply misogynist. Do we consign all their work to the scrap heap? Or is there an argument for separating their personal views from their work? In the cast of Roseanne I would venture that the episode in which Roseanne teaches DJ why he shouldn’t be racist carries more weight than her recent tweet. And, by and large, the TV Roseanne was all about tolerance and acceptance of others. Isn’t it worth taking a slightly more nuanced view?

    • Based on eps I saw I did not have a problem with Roseanne Conner’s views, which were challenged by Jackie. Drama is about conflict. Clearly ABC felt Roseanne Barr crossed a line publicly, and it hints at ongoing damage control surrounding the show. I suspect it was the draw that broke the camel’s back.

  9. I was really looking forward to the return of Roseanne, despite her extreme views, but it just felt stale to me. I hope the cast and crew are ok. With her reputation as being difficult to work with, I can’t help but sense a hint of relief in some of her colleagues tweets.

  10. estherhoffman

    Well,you know the old saying,you make your bed you lie in it.I have no sympathy for her at all.It was an incredibly stupid and crass thing to say.But she is a Trump supporter,so what else could you expect?…..

  11. Typical left-ist over-reaction & insanity. Have no doubt this is greatly motivated by her support for Trump rather than the tweet. They needed an excuse, foolishly (or not) Roseanne provided one.

    Now to be clear, anyone with braincells will soon realise: a society ran by progressives is one that eats itself and ends up in insanity. Wait & see. (The scientific rationale for this is backed up by Systems Theory and the empirical evidence of history, but I know progressives don’t like reality to intrude on their “best wishes & feelings”.) Hello from Russia.

    • You know Youtube has cat videos too, don’t you? It’s not all Alex Jones, Milo the … uh, just “Milo” … and Richard Spencer wannabes…

      p.s. there are no Reds under your bed. Just dust and sticky old magazines…

    • Hasn’t your mother ever told you if you got nothing nice to say then keep your mouth shut. Twitter Just shows us how stupid celebrities can be when they are on social media .racism is racism there is no left or right side of politics when it comes to racism .her comments were disgusting

    • Except that it’s normally conservatives who are the quickest to ban books, censor films, blacklist people and limit free speech. The fact that it’s now become a knee-jerk reaction on the left is rather disturbing. All the more so because this is a classic case of shooting yourself in the foot. Real Roseanne might be a loose cannon and frequently offensive, but Screen Roseanne – thanks to her writers and producers – was a beacon of acceptance and tolerance, and a trailblazing champion of gay rights, women’s rights and, believe it or not, racial tolerance. Real Roseanne won’t be hurt much by this; she’ll merely retreat to her idyllic Hawaiian property and count her millions. Wouldn’t it have been much better to deploy Screen Roseanne in continuing to espouse the kind of values and decency that Real Roseanne sometimes forgets?

  12. It’s not like ABC has much choice. Rosanne has lost 8m viewers since the first double episode, but was still profitable. But they can’t make the show without Rosanne, she is the focus, has a created by credit and it’s based around a character she created from her stand-up. It will now be boycotted by everyone under 40 and any advertiser who buys ads in it will also be threatened with boycotts online. So it’s now worthless and there’s no point in ABC making further series. They will release the DVD in a year or so once the fussy has died down.

    • Write Rosanne out of the series in a similar way they did to Valerie Harper after she had a dispute with the show’s producers.
      The Hogan Family (originally titled Valerie, and later, Valerie’s Family)

    • bettestreep2008

      trump supporters are going crazy over this decision. They defend her by saying it was just a ‘joke’ and it was protected under the 1st amendment. The problem is that this is not the first time she has tweeted or said something offensive. I won’t list them all here but lets just say she has attacked David Hogg, George Soros, Chelsea Clinton and Hillary Clinton in just the last month alone. And you can tell from her ‘apology’ that she was not sincere about it. I feel sorry for the cast and crew who have lost their jobs because of her selfishness and stupidity. Free speech is great – but there are always consequences if you offend people.

  13. Perhaps network 10 will now move NCIS forward to fill the prog gap. I like NCIS but have never watched the new series because I cant stand Roseanne
    Alll these gaps in prog with no repeats of earlier series. What now, more repeats of Frasier or Raymond or more encore s of their crap reality shows

  14. Oh wow! 1 inappropriate Tweet pulls off a popular show. I’m not a fan of Roseanne Barr however I did the program funny. I expect the re-runs on Eleven will be replaced with Raymond. It’ll be interesting what 10 replaces the new episodes with.

    • “1 inappropriate Tweet pulls off a popular show.”

      Have you ever heard the saying “the straw that broke the camel’s back”?

      _A couple_ of “inappropriate” (i.e. offensive) tweets – after a couple of months of offensive tweets while the show was on the air, nearly 20 years of RWNJ conspiracy-touting tweets & comments, and a lifetime of being well-known as extremely difficult to work with – pulled off a popular show.

      And she’s back at it right now, BTW, interspersed with lame apologies, trying to downplay it, and re-tweeting both people calling her out for it & weird conspiracy theories & memes supporting her original slurs. Make of that what you will. ABC did…

    • bettestreep2008

      Read the article. It was not just one tweet. This tweet was just the final straw. Producer and writer , Wanda Sykes immediately quit the show when she read this tweet. She did not know ABC were cancelling the show. She quit in disgust because she had it with the offensive tweets and interviews she has done since the show came back on air. So I repeat – it was not ‘just one tweet’.

  15. I think it was quite reasonable and appropriate to sack Roseanne but to cancel the show seems unfair on all the other cast and crew who should not be held accountable for one other person’s actions.
    Continuing the show without the eponymous star would be difficult but it has been done in past – the 1980s sitcom Valerie sacked star Valerie Harper and the show continued as The Hogan Family.
    All a moot point now but others should not suffer for the crimes of one person.

    • IIRC she held some of the concept & character rights to the show, & and that was one of the problems with getting the reboot up & running. Unless ABC solved that problem by delivering a pallet load of Benjamins & buying the rights for themselves it’s likely she still does. That’d make a spin-off unlikely.

      And most of the rest of the cast – certainly the originals – have been doing quite nicely elsewhere. Laurie Metcalfe was up for an Oscar last year, won a Tony, & is currently in a record-breaking Broadway show & up for another. John Goodman has been working steadily & has several high-profile movies over the last 20+ years. Sara Gilbert did a few years as a semi-regular in TBBT, & has EP’d & co-hosted a daily talk show for the last 7 years. Johnny Galecki reputedly earns 900k/ep on TBBT.

      I don’t think they’re gonna suffer too much…

    • bettestreep2008

      Good point. And there have been shows that have just replaced a character with another actor eg. like Dallas , Dynasty, Threes Company. There is talk that the show might come back under a different name eg. The Connors and they’ll explain Roseanne’s absence by killing her off or saying she has gone to Queensland to be with Scott and Charlene (thats a favourite of Neighbours).

      • bettestreep2008

        It was a dud here in Australia. It barely made the Top 20 on debut and Ten had to move it to Sunday nights and it barely improved. Australians are not as obsessed with trump as the Americans are. Kanye West was in Australia recently to launch his new fashion range and noone turned up! Gotta give us Aussies some credit for this.

  16. Cancelling the show as well as reruns is ridiculous. Her tweets were highly inappropriate, but the viewers should not be punished too. I feel bad for the cast and crew who were all signed on for a second season and are now out of a job.

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