Sara Gilbert Reacts to 'Roseanne' Cancellation: 'This Is Incredibly Sad and Difficult'

ABC canceled the sitcom on Tuesday after Roseanne Barr tweeted racist comments.

Sara Gilbert is understandably upset over the cancellation of Roseanne.

Despite getting an early 13-episode renewal in March after the sitcom premiered to gangbuster ratings, ABC announced on Tuesday that they were canceling the show following Roseanne Barr's racist tweet hours earlier towards Barack Obama's former White House adviser, Valerie Jarrett

Gilbert, one of the show's stars and an executive producer, had already posted two tweets ahead of the official cancellation, the latter of which does seem to be a reaction to Roseanne's demise.

"Roseanne’s recent comments about Valerie Jarrett, and so much more, are abhorrent and do not reflect the beliefs of our cast and crew or anyone associated with our show. I am disappointed in her actions to say the least," Gilbert tweeted.

"This is incredibly sad and difficult for all of us, as we’ve created a show that we believe in, are proud of, and that audiences love — one that is separate and apart from the opinions and words of one cast member," she continued.

Whitney Cummings -- the co-showrunner on Roseanne who left earlier this month to focus on other projects and was not returning for season 11 -- responded to Gilbert's tweets with a simple, "I love you Sara."

Gilbert's fellow EP, Bruce Helford, spoke out through his agent, United Talent Agency co-president Jay Sures, telling ET, “On behalf of all the writers and producers, we worked incredibly hard to create an amazing show. I was personally horrified and saddened by the comments and in no way do they reflect the values of the people who worked so hard to make this the iconic show that it is."

ET reached out to Gilbert's rep, who said the 43-year-old actress' tweets were her response and she was "not planning any additional statements at this time." The California native did not address the cancellation on Tuesday's episode of The Talk as the episode was pre-taped. 

As for the official cancellation, in a statement Tuesday morning that was later commended by Disney-ABC Chairman and CEO Bob Iger, ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey said, "Roseanne's Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show." 

Barr's racist tweet that set all this into motion read, "Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj,” referring to Jarrett, who is black and was born in Iran. After coming under fire, the 65-year-old comedian later deleted the racist tweet in question and issued an apology. 

"I apologize. I am now leaving Twitter," Barr said in one tweet before emphasizing in a second, "I apologize to Valerie Jarrett and to all Americans. I am truly sorry for making a bad joke about her politics and her looks. I should have known better. Forgive me-my joke was in bad taste."

Following those tweets -- which were far from the first controversial statements that Barr has made on social media over the years -- Wanda Sykes quit as a consulting producer on the show, and Emma Kenney, who played Gilbert's daughter on the revival, tweeted that she had called her manager ahead of its cancellation to talk about quitting the show.

Gilbert, who starred as Darlene Conner on the sitcom, was the driving force behind the show coming back in the first place. After her TV dad, John Goodman, came onto her daytime talk show, The Talk, and said that he would do a reunion, she realized that everyone would come back, and she made it happen. 

And it did -- season 10 hit the airwaves this spring, 21 years after the original season finale, with all of the original cast members back to reprise their roles, including Gilbert, Barr (Roseanne Conner), Goodman (Dan Conner), Laurie Metcalf (Jackie Harris), Michael Fishman (D.J. Conner), Lecy Goranson (Becky Conner -- No. 1) and Sarah Chalke (Becky No. 2).

"I feel this responsibility for the character and I feel this responsibility to the show, so it's probably a lot more stressful now. It's not on me alone, but I feel a big sense of responsibility to keep the show's quality up," Gilbert told ET in an interview conducted two weeks before the controversy. 

Adam Rose/ABC

The fallout from Roseanne's cancellation continued all day Tuesday. Barr was dropped by her agency, ICM, and Variety revealed that Roseanne reruns would be pulled from Viacom cable channels starting Wednesday. 

Roseanne being dropped by ABC clearly affects more than just Barr -- every single person on the show is now out of a job, and the actors who played members of the Conner family are clearly saddened by the turn of events. Michael Fishman, who played Gilbert's sister and Barr's son, DJ Conner, on the sitcom, addressed just that.

"Today is one of the hardest in my life. I feel devastated, not for the end of the Roseanne show, but for all those who poured their hearts and souls into our jobs, and the audience that welcomed us into their homes. Our cast, crew, writers, and production staff strived for inclusiveness, with numerous storylines designed to reflect inclusiveness. The words of one person do not exemplify the thinking of all involved," Fishman wrote in a lengthy statement on Twitter.

"I condemn these statements vehemently," the 36-year-old actor continued. "They are reprehensible and intolerable, contradicting my beliefs and outlook on life and society. I have always lived and taught my children to be inclusive. I believe our show strived to embrace different backgrounds and opinions, through open dialogue."

For more on the cancellation, watch the video below.


Latest News