Should Fox have just canceled "Lethal Weapon" instead of doing this?
The network canceled "Lucifer" and "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," but renewed "Lethal Weapon" for Season 3, just without co-lead Clayne Crawford. It was announced over the weekend that actor Seann William Scott was cast as a new character who partners with Damon Wayans' Roger Murtaugh.
So Seann isn't taking over the part of Martin Riggs, played by Mel Gibson on film and Clayne Crawford on TV. He's playing someone brand new.
Crawford had retweeted support from costars and coworkers before the official recasting was announced. But, according to Entertainment Weekly, Fox was pushed into a corner and told by Warner Bros. that they *couldn't* keep Crawford if the show was renewed, from a financial and legal perspective. Here's more from EW:
"Studio Warner Bros. issued a statement declaring Crawford's contract was not picked up for the third season. Sources have told EW that the decision was a difficult one and was due to Crawford exhibiting a pattern of toxic behavior on the set and that there is video and audio evidence of such behavior. While not going into exact details, we're told that in each instance there were disciplinary actions taken by the studio and the behavior continued. A couple crew members even resigned over Crawford's actions, sources say. Warner Bros. alerted Fox to the issue and told the network they couldn't keep the actor on the show if renewed — even just from a financial standpoint, ignoring a documented pattern of behavior would put the studio at risk."
Crawford had joked about the rumors that he would be fired, then responded to official renewal/recasting news:
He's been retweeting messages of support from past coworkers, probably in the hope that he is picked up for a new job soon:
Love you buddy......"dad" https://t.co/CquZNXbVnI— Clayne Crawford (@ClayneCrawford) May 12, 2018
Thank you brother! https://t.co/jtC0jgON7i— Clayne Crawford (@ClayneCrawford) May 13, 2018
Buddy, the pleasure was all mine, look forward to working with you again soon. https://t.co/72HGo39kw3— Clayne Crawford (@ClayneCrawford) May 13, 2018
Fans have been upset at Fox and supportive of Clayne Crawford, but they also weren't on set when anything happened. It's possible even if the video and audio were released they'd still stand by him. But if this is happening, and a couple of crew members even quit because of him, it must've been pretty serious.
That said, Fox isn't exactly doing itself any favors by keeping the show at all -- with a recast lead -- when it just axed several favorites. And Seann William Scott? Don't blame him. The "American Pie" alum was probably a good replacement choice, if they were simply determined to bring the show back and couldn't keep Crawford, so hopefully fans don't take their ire out on him. But they may just not watch the show, leaving Fox wishing they had made this simpler for themselves.
Want more stuff like this? Like us on Facebook.