11 TV Cast Upheavals, From Kevin Spacey in ‘House of Cards’ to Clayne Crawford in ‘Lethal Weapon’
The role of Martin Riggs is being re-cast ahead of a third season, according to a report from the Hollywood Reporter Tuesday.
Crawford apologized last month after “complaints of emotional abuse and creating a hostile environment” surfaced. He was reprimanded and he apologized, but a third season for the Fox series has not yet been announced.
“I take great pride in treating everyone in life with dignity and kindness,” the 40-year-old actor said. “I am very grateful for my job, and I work extremely hard at it. I have a responsibility to do good work for my coworkers, my family, and my home state, and most especially for the fans. I hope they will stick with me and stick with the show.”
“House of Cards”
After reports accusing star Kevin Spacey of sexual misconduct, production was delayedand the actor’s character was eventually written out of the show. Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos announced in December that a sixth and final season of the critically acclaimed drama “will not involve Kevin Spacey,” but star Robin Wright.
Danny Masterson was written out of the Netflix comedy after multiple accusations of sexual assault, a Netflix spokesperson told TheWrap back in December. Masterson denied the allegations and said he was “disappointed” in the streamer’s decision to remove him from the series.
“From day one, I have denied the outrageous allegations against me. Law enforcement investigated these claims more than 15 years ago and determined them to be without merit,” he said in a statement to TheWrap at the time. “I have never been charged with a crime, let alone convicted of one. In this country, you are presumed innocent until proven guilty.”
The singing competition lost judge Charlie Walk after the music exec was accused of sexual harassment by a former employee. Walk did not attend the Fox show’s finale, and will not be returning.
“I do not want my presence to be a distraction. Needless to say this is very upsetting,” Walk said in a statement in February. “Although I continue to support the ‘Me Too’ movement, there has been an extreme rush to judgment against me in this particular case which is unfair and inconsistent with anything that even actually happened. I welcome any investigation so that in short order these unfounded and hurtful accusations can be put to rest.”
He has since left Republic Records.
“Ordeal By Innocence”
“Gossip Girl” alum Ed Westwick was replaced by Christian Cooke after the actor was accused by three women of sexual assault (Westwick has denied the claims against him). The premiere of the drama was canceled amid the sexual assault claims in November, and the show was pulled from BBC’s schedules. Filming for another BBC drama featuring Westwick, “White Gold,” was also stalled at the time. Reshoots with Cooke went “smoothly,” according to The Guardian, and the drama finally premiered on BBC One on Easter Sunday.
“The Walking Dead”
Okay, this upheaval has nothing to do with sexual harassment or assault. Chandler Riggs, who played fan-favorite character Carl Grimes, left the show this season in a drawn-out and heartbreaking death by zombie bite. “I didn’t know that this many people connected to him like on such an extreme level,” Riggs said in an interview with TheWrap after the midseason premiere amidst a wave of fan support. Carl’s death on the long-standing drama was surprising because his character is still very much alive and a large part of the plot in the comics on which the show is based.
News of long-time cast members Sarah Drew and Jessica Capshaw leaving the medical drama came as a shock to fans in March. After some speculation that star Ellen Pompeo’s behemoth salary led to the actress’ being cut, both Pompeo and showrunner said the idea was misleading.
“The decision to make changes to our cast was a creative one,” Vernoff said definitively. “The only thing as constant on Grey’s Anatomy as Ellen Pompeo is our penchant for reinvention. It is a part of our success and what keeps the show exciting. We love these actresses and we love these characters and it felt true and right creatively to wrap up their stories. And that is the whole story.”
Drew has since been cast in the CBS reboot pilot of “Cagney and Lacey.”
“Fear the Walking Dead”
“Harry Potter” alum Frank Dillane, who plays Nick Clark on the “Walking Dead” spinoff, said that Season 4 felt like the right time to move on from the show. Nick died in Sunday night’s episode after being shot by Charlie, the child spy of the Vultures group.
“I just felt like the beginning of this season kind of felt like the end of an era with this show. And television is hard work, and you have to shoot a lot,” the British actor said in an interview with Entertainment Weekly. “I also missed Europe very much. I’m not American, so after a while I get quite homesick and all of those things. I also felt like we had achieved what needed to be achieved in the first few seasons, so I thought it was time to keep moving.”
Combined with new cast members like “Walking Dead” star Lennie James, Maggie Grace, Garret Dillahunt and Jenna Elfman, Nick’s death marks the whittling away of the Clark family and crew.
Long-time “NCIS” star Pauley Perrette announced in October that she’s leaving the show after 15 seasons. “So it is true that I am leaving NCIS… There have been all kinds of false rumors as to why,” she tweeted last fall, adding that, no, she does not have a skin care line, nor does she have beef with the network.
Comedian T.J. Miller left the HBO sitcom at the end of last season, and his only legacy in Season 5 are the pig ashes Jian Yang uses to convince the court he’s dead. Showrunner Alec Berg told TheWrap last June that Miller’s exit “was for the best” and that he thought it was time for the actor to move on. Miller told TheWrap that the cliffhanger ending to Season 4 felt like the perfect time to leave. But Miller’s exit has been cloaked in controversy as well, as he has accusations of sexual harassment (that he’s denied) against him and his co-stars said he was often late, would fall asleep on set or even show up drunk.