Upfronts 2018: Network Ownership Peaks, Digital Rights Demands Increase As Volume & License Fees Slide

A week before ABC made its official new series orders, the network had not screened two high-profile pilots, the light action drama Whiskey Cavalier from producer Bill Lawrence, and comedy Most Likely To from Berlanti Productions. The holdup was due to…

A week before ABC made its official new series orders, the network had not screened two high-profile pilots, the light action drama Whiskey Cavalier from producer Bill Lawrence, and comedy Most Likely To from Berlanti Productions. The holdup was due to new expanded digital rights deals ABC had put forward a few weeks before it was to make pickup decisions. I hear the new template — which varied slightly from show to show and studio to studio — called for expanded stacking…

Damon Wayans Twitter Storm: ‘Lethal Weapon’ Star Takes On Warner Bros. TV and Clayne Crawford

Following Crawford’s firing, Wayans shares graphic video of on-set accident, and claims that “Warner Bros. TV is not defending me at all.”

Warner Bros. TV managed to save “Lethal Weapon” over the weekend with a last-minute Hail Mary move to replace fired star Clayne Crawford with “American Pie” alum Seann William Scott. But apparently hard feelings remain for star Damon Wayans, who posted his side of the story on Monday night via Twitter.

After some fans of the show balked at the changes, Wayans wrote that he believed “Warner Bros. TV is not defending me at all,” and posted images (and a video) of an injury he received on the back of his head while shooting an episode directed by Crawford. “Now that the fate of the show is solidified, I’d like to address the Twitter outrage with this video and image to follow,” he wrote.

Wayans also tweeted that he received “no apology” from Crawford. The two stars’ relationship had already been rocky, but insiders said this solidified the animosity between the two — and several nasty exchanges followed. Below, here’s the video, shared by Wayans, of the moment he was injured on set.

 

Lethal Weapon

There’s also the issue of Crawford’s behavior on set beyond just Wayans, which has been well documented. Wayans posted a photo of a sticker on set calling Crawford “an emotional terrorist,” arguing that “He became uninsurable. Relished in making female cry. And struck fear in cast and crew.”

Lethal Weapon

Among others that Wayans alleges were harmed during filming: “He hit another actor in the mouth with a bottle of green tea and busted his mouth open.” And in yet another Tweet, Wayans said Crawford had a “file of infractions” and told Warner Bros. TV to “release the tapes” — alleging that there is film of Crawford’s bad behavior.

“Kiss the dark side of my ass if you don’t understand it wasn’t just me,” Wayans wrote.

Additionally, Wayans retweeted a fan who defended the choice of Scott in taking over opposite him.

Yet, insiders have suggested that Wayans wasn’t completely innocent on set either. And in what may have been some of his own negotiation, the actor on May 12 was retweeting fans who suggested that Crawford needed to stay. He even tweeted the hashtag “#TeamClayne” at one point. That Tweet appears to be gone, and Wayans claimed that his Twitter account was “hacked,” but yet those other pro-Crawford Tweets remain.

Lethal Weapon

Lethal Weapon

Lethal Weapon

Crawford was reprimanded several times by Warner Bros. TV for his behavior on set, which he admitted in an Instagram post, but said he “reacted with anger over working conditions that did not feel safe or conducive to good work.” According to his post, he completed studio-appointed therapy and shared part of his check with one of the parties that he clashed with. He then also mentioned the Wayans shrapnel incident, without mentioning his co-star’s name.

“I absolutely love, respect and care for my crew and cast, and would never intentionally jeopardize so many jobs,” he wrote. “I am incredibly sorry if my passion for doing good work has ever made anyone feel less than comfortable on our set, or feel less than celebrated for their efforts.”

That apology didn’t sit well with Warner Bros. TV, however, and the studio began looking for a replacement. Among the options were Scott and Johnny Knoxville (who sources said was not interested in doing a TV series). Once Scott was firmed up, Warner Bros. announced that it had decided not to renew Crawford’s contract.

The move was a gamble, as Warner Bros. TV has a lucrative hit on its hands, and changes to an established show are often hard to incorporate. But insiders said the situation had become untenable.

Fox wasn’t informed at first of the situation, and Fox TV Group chairman Dana Walden admitted to reporters on Monday that “this was not our choice… ultimately, our partners at Warner Bros. came to us about three weeks ago to tell us that they could not deliver ‘Lethal Weapon’ as we’ve known it before. That there were some real challenges in the cast. They thought long and hard about it. I know that was not their first choice, but that ultimately, these were the circumstances that they could offer us the show.

“We thought about it a lot, and we talked about a lot of different names and ultimately, when they came back with Seann, and a fantastic showrunner, and a big TV star in Damon, and a great cast and a storytelling engine that works, and a fan base that’s very passionate about the show, I think we ultimately made the right choice,” she added. “And we are prepared to support it from a marketing point of view, to educate viewers and fans of the show, about a new dynamic, but a good one, and a lot of a show that people love, which is still intact.”

In particular, Fox and Warner Bros. TV execs point to the successful transition of “NYPD Blue” early in its run, when David Caruso departed and was replaced by Jimmy Smits. “‘NYPD Blue; changing out one of their leads going into the second season of the show, did that beautifully with a great new character, and the show continued on its great success path,” said Fox TV Group chairman Gary Newman. “And we’re anticipating Matt Miller, who’s really one of the top creator/showrunners working in television today, being able to do that with Seann and ‘Lethal Weapon.'”

After Wayans’ initial Tweet storm, he switched his Twitter account to private — but by then, plenty of screengrabs had already been taken. Later, he once again opened his account to the world to see. Warner Bros. TV has not responded to a request for comment.

‘Lethal Weapon’ Star Damon Wayans Calls Out Clayne Crawford After Renewal

“Lethal Weapon” star Damon Wayans has spoken out via Twitter after the Fox series was renewed for a third season despite the exit of star Clayne Crawford, who was let go from the show after revelations about two on-set incidents for which C…

“Lethal Weapon” star Damon Wayans has spoken out via Twitter after the Fox series was renewed for a third season despite the exit of star Clayne Crawford, who was let go from the show after revelations about two on-set incidents for which Crawford received reprimands. Wayans, who plays Roger Murtaugh, posted a video and image […]

‘Lethal Weapon’ Season 3 Renewal After Casting Shakeup Comes With Caveat – A Shorter Order

EXCLUSIVE: Lethal Weapon yesterday scored a dramatic, eleventh-hour Season 3 renewal by Fox with Seann William Scott replacing original co-lead Clayne Crawford. And this morning, Lethal Weapon was on the fall Fox schedule, retuning to Tuesday night.
No…

EXCLUSIVE: Lethal Weapon yesterday scored a dramatic, eleventh-hour Season 3 renewal by Fox with Seann William Scott replacing original co-lead Clayne Crawford. And this morning, Lethal Weapon was on the fall Fox schedule, retuning to Tuesday night. No episode count was announced but I hear that, despite the fact that Lethal Weapon‘s third season is premiering in the fall, its order is for 13 episodes, not the standard full-season 22. Besides sophomore shows that had…

Damon Wayans Shares Video of On-Set Injury During ‘Lethal Weapon’ Episode Directed by Clayne Crawford

“Lethal Weapon” star Damon Wayans shared a graphic video and photo on his Twitter page on Monday in the wake of former co-star Clayne Crawford’s recent firing from the Fox buddy cop show.

The video was shot during the filming of a Season 2 episode that was directed by Crawford and shows Wayans being hit in the head with shrapnel.

“Now that the fate of the show is solidified,” Wayans said, referring to it being renewed for Season 3 without Martin Riggs as a key character, “I’d like to address the Twitter outrage with this video and image to follow #directedby@ClayneCrawford.”

Also Read: Fox Brass on Clayne Crawford’s ‘Lethal Weapon’ Firing: ‘This Was Not Our Choice’

Wayans’ Twitter account is set to private but The Hollywood Reporter captured screenshots of the tweets.

His next post said: “How does the shrapnel from this hit me on the opposite side of the head? #directedby@ClayneCrawford.”

Later he added, “Below is a rendering seeking to explain yesterday’s incident … @ClayneCrawford #noapology.”

Also Read: Clayne Crawford Responds to ‘Lethal Weapon’ Firing with Glum Photo

See screenshots of the tweets below.

According to IMDb.com, Crawford directed the Season 2 episode titled “Jesse’s Girl,” which aired on April 24.

A representative for Fox referred TheWrap to Warner Bros. Television, who did not immediately respond to our request for comment on Wayans’ tweets about the on-set incident.

Also Read: Clayne Crawford’s Reaction to ‘Lethal Weapon’ Recasting News Is Actually Pretty Hilarious

On Sunday, Michael Thorn, president of entertainment at Fox Broadcasting Company, announced that “Lethal Weapon” had been renewed for a third season, along with revealing that Seann William Scott (“American Pie”) will be joining the cast next season as a new character who folds into a partnership with Roger Murtaugh (Wayans).

Also Read: Fox’s ‘Lethal Weapon’ Renewed Without Clayne Crawford; Seann William Scott to Star

A spokesperson for Warner Bros. Television added that the studio had “decided not to renew Clayne Crawford’s contract for ‘Lethal Weapon,’” following incidents of bad behavior on the Fox action drama’s set, for which he apologized. The announcement of Crawford’s ousting comes less than a week after news broke the studio was exploring recasting his part.

“Lethal Weapon” is based on the feature film franchise of the same name. The cast includes Keesha Sharp, Kevin Rahm, Jordana Brewster, Johnathan Fernandez, Dante Brown, Chandler Kinney and Michelle Mitchenor.

The Hollywood Reporter first reported the news of Wayans’ tweets.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Fox Brass on Clayne Crawford’s ‘Lethal Weapon’ Firing: ‘This Was Not Our Choice’

Clayne Crawford Responds to ‘Lethal Weapon’ Firing with Glum Photo

Fox’s ‘Lethal Weapon’ Renewed Without Clayne Crawford; Seann William Scott to Star

“Lethal Weapon” star Damon Wayans shared a graphic video and photo on his Twitter page on Monday in the wake of former co-star Clayne Crawford’s recent firing from the Fox buddy cop show.

The video was shot during the filming of a Season 2 episode that was directed by Crawford and shows Wayans being hit in the head with shrapnel.

“Now that the fate of the show is solidified,” Wayans said, referring to it being renewed for Season 3 without Martin Riggs as a key character, “I’d like to address the Twitter outrage with this video and image to follow #directedby@ClayneCrawford.”

Wayans’ Twitter account is set to private but The Hollywood Reporter captured screenshots of the tweets.

His next post said: “How does the shrapnel from this hit me on the opposite side of the head? #directedby@ClayneCrawford.”

Later he added, “Below is a rendering seeking to explain yesterday’s incident … @ClayneCrawford #noapology.”

See screenshots of the tweets below.

According to IMDb.com, Crawford directed the Season 2 episode titled “Jesse’s Girl,” which aired on April 24.

A representative for Fox referred TheWrap to Warner Bros. Television, who did not immediately respond to our request for comment on Wayans’ tweets about the on-set incident.

On Sunday, Michael Thorn, president of entertainment at Fox Broadcasting Company, announced that “Lethal Weapon” had been renewed for a third season, along with revealing that Seann William Scott (“American Pie”) will be joining the cast next season as a new character who folds into a partnership with Roger Murtaugh (Wayans).

A spokesperson for Warner Bros. Television added that the studio had “decided not to renew Clayne Crawford’s contract for ‘Lethal Weapon,'” following incidents of bad behavior on the Fox action drama’s set, for which he apologized. The announcement of Crawford’s ousting comes less than a week after news broke the studio was exploring recasting his part.

“Lethal Weapon” is based on the feature film franchise of the same name. The cast includes Keesha Sharp, Kevin Rahm, Jordana Brewster, Johnathan Fernandez, Dante Brown, Chandler Kinney and Michelle Mitchenor.

The Hollywood Reporter first reported the news of Wayans’ tweets.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Fox Brass on Clayne Crawford's 'Lethal Weapon' Firing: 'This Was Not Our Choice'

Clayne Crawford Responds to 'Lethal Weapon' Firing with Glum Photo

Fox's 'Lethal Weapon' Renewed Without Clayne Crawford; Seann William Scott to Star

‘Lethal Weapon’s Damon Wayans Shares Video & Photo Of On-Set Shrapnel Injury, Calls Out Fired Clayne Crawford

UPDATED with more tweets: Damon Wayans has shared additional tweets in regards to Clayne Crawford’s on-set behavior, saying that Crawford has a “file of infractions.” In one of his tweets, Wayans claims that Crawford hit an actor in t…

UPDATED with more tweets: Damon Wayans has shared additional tweets in regards to Clayne Crawford’s on-set behavior, saying that Crawford has a “file of infractions.” In one of his tweets, Wayans claims that Crawford hit an actor in the mouth with a bottle of green tea and busted his mouth open. He posted another tweet with a photo of a flyer that said “Clayne Crawford is an emotional terrorist. The caption says that he was “UNINSURABLE!” and that he “relished” in making…