This past Sunday, actress Afton Williamson explained why she left ABC’s The Rookie even after it was renewed for a second season. The reasons Williamson is leaving include having to endure racist comments from the hair and makeup team and sexual harassment from a guest star.
Not only did Williamson have to survive in an unhealthy work environment, but the showrunners at The Rookie did little to improve things for her and broke a promise to cut the unnamed guest star from the show for Season 2. Instead, the showrunner did not inform the producers or HR about her concerns, was forced to read and film with the guest star and saw that he was returning for the second season. She explained it all in an Instagram post.
“I will not be returning for Season 2 of The Rookie,” she began. Throughout the filming of the pilot, I experienced Racial Discrimination/Racially Charged inappropriate comments from the hair department and bullying from Executive Producers. During the Season, it continued along with Sexual Harassment from a recurring guest star and the racist commentary & bullying from the Hair Dept. Head escalated into Sexual Assault at our Wrap party.”
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Entertainment One, the lead studio on The Rookie, launched an investigation into Williamson’s claims, but that hasn’t stopped her from wanting to leave the show.
“We take claims of this nature very seriously,” said Entertainment One in a statement. “We have initiated an independent investigation which is ongoing and as such, it would not be appropriate to comment at this time.”
The Rookie is about John Nolan (Nathan Fillion) who decides to become an officer on the LAPD in his mid-30s, making him the oldest rookie cop on the force. Season 2 will premier on ABC in late September.