ABC’s decision to ax Roseanne in the wake of its star’s racist tweet could end up costing the network $1 billion, Tom Arnold claims.
The popular 1990s sitcom has been one of ABC’s top rated shows since the reboot was brought back to America’s screens last year.
But on Tuesday, the network announced it was cancelling the show after the titular star Roseanne Barr wrote that former Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett, who is African American, looked like the ‘Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby’.
On Wednesday, Barr’s ex-husband Arnold appeared on AC360 to warn that it was would be a costly decision.
‘ABC lost maybe $1 billion from this,’ he said.
ABC’s decision to ax Roseanne in the wake of its star’s racist tweet could end up costing the network $1 billion, Tom Arnold claimed when he appeared on AC360
‘This show was grinding out money hand over fist and they lost it all because somebody didn’t say, ‘Get that phone out of her hand,” Arnold added.
‘She’s not going to go on TV and say these things. But you put that phone in her and and she is a loose cannon.’
While the billion dollar figure has not been verified, it’s clear that the cancellation of Roseanne will not come cheap.
Before the controversy, ABC had ordered 13-episode second season for the show.
And stars, including Sara Gilbert, Laurie Metcalf and John Goodman, all expect to be paid for the scrapped season.
Sources told the Hollywood Reporter that the stars recently negotiated new deals for the 11th season at $300,000 an episode, up from $250,000 a year before.
They are expecting to be paid for at least ten of the 13 scrapped episodes.
Barr was due to receive $500,000 per episode although it’s not clear whether she will be paid, potentially depending on factors such as whether her contract has a morality clause.
It is also unclear how much the writers and remaining 200 crew would be compensated.
But insiders have estimated that ABC will lose out on as much as $60 million in ad revenues on the second season of the popular sitcom.
The decision was welcomed by many in Hollywood who recognized that ABC would be taking a financial hit in the process
Barr will personally lose $3million in the cancellation which has also seen Roseanne reruns pulled from TV.
Barr tweeted news that her reruns were being pulled from the air, and also retweeted one fan who called the decision ‘pathetic’.
‘Smaller networks were running the rerun marathons and raking in $ because the revival was a number one hit on TV,’ the commenter wrote.
‘ABC pulls their money maker and they bail. Pathetic.’
Barr, who has an estimated net worth of $80million, reportedly received $250,000 per episode for nine episodes of the revival season and earned a total of $2.25m.
ABC’s decision was welcomed by many in Hollywood who recognized that ABC would be taking a financial hit in the process.
Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston thanked Disney CEO Robert Iger for deciding that ‘righteousness trumps profits’ by firing an ‘open racist and anti-Semite.’ (Disney owns ABC).
Actress Minnie Driver tweeted that she was ‘so proud’ of ABC for ‘having the ethical compunction to cancel Roseanne’.
British comedian Ricky Gervais tweeted his response to a fan who claimed that the network was attempting to ‘police speech’ by shutting down the show, and urged him to support Roseanne.
Actress Minnie Driver added that she was ‘so proud’ of ABC for ‘having the ethical compunction to cancel Roseanne despite the show’s huge numbers.’
Arnold also tweeted he had a ‘ton of respect for Bob Iger’ who made a ‘tough decision with financial consequences for his company, but right for America.’
Arnold – who was a writer on the original Rosanne series – claimed that Barr’s politics and social media showed that she was obsessed with the conspiracy theories that Donald Trump has been feeding to the masses
The 65-year-old actress was widely condemned after she tweeted that Valerie Jarrett, who is African-American and advised Barack and Michelle Obama, looked like the ‘Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby’
Barr shared her disgust with the segment when someone tagged her in a post about it
Roseanne’s ex husband said yesterday, on AC360, that he was not surprised by the scandal – he’d been bracing himself ever since he’d heard the news of the reboot.
The 59-year-old – who was a writer on the original Rosanne series – claimed that Barr’s politics and social media showed that she was obsessed with the conspiracy theories that Donald Trump has been feeding to the masses.
‘This monkey thing is something that she tweeted before about black people, it’s a meme that she and thousands of her alt-right fans do. They love to call black people monkeys, it’s not a one time joke,’ Arnold explained.
Arnold wrote for the show in 1988 and married Barr in 1990 but would divorce in 1994
‘They can do this because we have a white trash racist president. That’s a fact!’
Just earlier, Arnold made comments to The Hollywood Reporter, claiming that Barr wanted to have the show cancelled which he reiterated on CNN
‘It had to happen,’ Arnold said to THR. ‘And I am going to tell you the truth, she wanted it to happen, if you saw how her tweets escalated this weekend. If it hadn’t happened yesterday, this season would have been so awful for everyone every day because she would have felt like she was [being] taken advantage [of], just like when I left the show.’
The actor shared that if Barr’s phone would have been taken away, the chances of something to this degree happening would have been reduced.
Arnold wrote for the show in 1988 and married Barr in 1990. They divorced in 1994 with Barr claiming he abused her. Yet he received $50million in the settlement.
‘I said look, someone has got to tell her that Donald Trump doesn’t carry his own phone,’ he added. ‘He may say the tweet, but someone is typing it in.’
Arnold felt that Barr needed a ‘shield’ or ‘someone to wrangle her in and take her phone.’
Trump has weighed in on the controversy, demanding an apology from ABC on Friday, claiming the network offended ‘millions of people.’
Trump also criticized ABC for a story reporter Brian Ross did last year on the Russia investigation that the network later retracted.
Arnold shared his disgust with how Trump was only concerned with how the media had treated him when news of Barr’s tweets made their way to him
‘Oh my god, you’ve married up in the world,’ Arnold claimed Trump said to him at the 2005 Oscar dinner party. ‘Then he says to me, ‘Roseanne was disgusting”
It was his second demand in two days for an apology from Disney CEO Bob Iger. Disney owns ABC.
Trump weighed in on the Roseanne Barr controversy for the first time Wednesday with a complaint that he never got an apology from ABC for the ‘for the HORRIBLE statements made and said about me on ABC.’
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders later said Trump was referring to bias in the media when he asked for the apology.
But on Friday the president mentioned a specific infraction from ABC and accused the network of a ‘double standard’ for not apologizing for Ross’ gaffe.
‘Bob Iger of ABC called Valerie Jarrett to let her know that “ABC does not tolerate comments like those” made by Roseanne Barr. Gee, he never called President Donald J. Trump to apologize for the HORRIBLE statements made and said about me on ABC. Maybe I just didn’t get the call?’
Multiple sources told DailyMail.com that a possible spin-off of the show is not out of the question, potentially featuring stars Metcalf, Goodman and Sara Gilbert, who plays Roseanne’s daughter Darlene.
One of the sources said Gilbert is dealing with the cast and crew after the fallout from creator Roseanne’s racist tweet left over 200 people without a job, and will be speaking with writers and producers later this week in a meeting that had already been planned prior to Tuesday.