ABC Makes It Official: ‘Roseanne’ Spinoff Won’t Include Roseanne
ABC announced on Thursday that a rumored ‘Roseanne’ spinoff would debut this fall minus its controversial star, Roseanne Barr.
We’ve heard the rumors about a possible Roseanne spinoff for weeks now.
They began within about 24 hours of ABC pulling the plug on the reboot of Roseanne Barr’s hit sitcom after Barr posted a controversial tweet that compared a former Obama advisor to an ape.
Despite her apology and acknowledgement that the joke was in poor taste, that wasn’t enough for the alphabet network, which announced the cancellation of the program. That program, by the way, was one of the biggest hits of the season. That fact alone made it a surprise that ABC would axe the show.
Almost immediately, people suggested that rather than cancelling the show, ABC should just dump Barr herself and retitle it Dan, the name of her fictional husband, played by John Goodman. Instead the rumor mill placed the focus on Sara Gilbert’s character of Darlene, Roseanne and Dan’s daughter.
Last week, it was suggested that ABC could make an announcement within days. Reports suggest the final sticking point was determining how much Barr would have to be paid to walk away from characters she helped create and the show itself.
On Thursday, the network made it official: this autumn, the retooled reboot, tentatively titled The Conners, will shift the focus from Roseanne and Dan to Darlene.
I haven’t yet seen any details about exactly how much she’s getting. But she said in a statement she agreed to a settlement “in order that 200 jobs of beloved cast and crew could be saved” and also wished the best for all of them.
It’s not the first time a show has killed off a primary star. I mentioned in that earlier post that after All in the Family became Archie Bunker’s Place, Jean Stapleton decided to leave the series and producers wound up killing off her beloved character of Edith Bunker. And years later, after a contract dispute, NBC fired Valerie star Valerie Harper, renaming the series Valerie’s Family and then The Hogan Family.
But Roseanne’s character was so synonymous with the show itself that it’s hard to imagine a show focused on those characters without her in the picture.
Will you watch ‘The Conners’ next season? Do you see yourself staying through all 10 episodes?