While Roseanne Barr may be done at ABC, the characters she helped create are poised for a comeback. ABC has given a series order to a spinoff of “Roseanne” that will not include Barr, but will include the rest of her on-screen family.
ABC announced in a statement that it has greenlit a series with a working title “The Conners,” to air on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. this fall. Barr reportedly will have no financial or creative involvement with the show following her firing over a racist tweet directed at former Obama aide Valerie Jarrett in which she referred to her as an “ape.”
“I regret the circumstances that have caused me to be removed from Roseanne,” Barr said about the agreement she made with producer Werner Entertainment, in a statement provided to Fox News. “I agreed to the settlement in order that 200 jobs of beloved cast and crew could be saved, and I wish the best for everyone involved.”
Cast members John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Sara Gilbert, Lecy Goranson and Michael Fishman are set to reprise their roles. It’s unclear at this time how the family will continue without Barr’s character or how she’ll be written out. Deadline reports that “a sudden turn of events” will lead the Conners to face daily life in their home of Lanford, Illinois, in a way they haven’t before – without their no-nonsense matriarch.
“The Conners’ stories demonstrate that families can always find common ground through conversation, laughter and love. The spinoff will continue to portray contemporary issues that are as relevant today as they were 30 years ago,” ABC said in a statement announcing the news.
The returning cast released a statement as well:
“We have received a tremendous amount of support from fans of our show, and it’s clear that these characters not only have a place in our hearts, but in the hearts and homes of our audience,” the statement read. “We all came back last season because we wanted to tell stories about the challenges facing a working-class family today. We are so happy to have the opportunity to return with the cast and crew to continue to share those stories through love and laughter.”
As previously reported, Barr was canceled last month despite a series order for a second season of the revival, which picked up where the Conner family left off after the show’s original run ended in 1996. The premiere was a massive ratings success for the network, but ABC pulled the plug after some politically charged tweets from Barr topped by the racist remarks against Jarrett.
“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 told Fox News at the time.
Since then, rumors have been swirling that the network was hoping to push forward with a spinoff that would not include “Roseanne.” Fans and critics alike were skeptical about the concept of a “Roseanne” series without Roseanne, but it seems the network is betting on the supporting cast to maintain its ratings high.
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