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ABC Gives ‘Roseanne’ the Ax After Roseanne Barr Compares Former Obama Adviser to an ‘Ape’

FILE – In this March 23, 2018, file photo, Roseanne Barr arrives at the Los Angeles premiere of “Roseanne” on Friday in Burbank, Calif. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)

ABC has canceled its hit reboot of “Roseanne” following comedian Roseanne Barr’s racist tweet about former Barack Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett.

ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey says the comment “is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel the show.”

The “Roseanne” revival this spring was an unexpected major hit for ABC. It was particularly popular among many conservative viewers because Barr’s character expressed support for President Donald Trump.

Barr’s tweet suggested that Jarrett is a product of the Muslim brotherhood and the “Planet of the Apes.”

On Tuesday, Barr tweeted to Jarrett that she was sorry “for making a bad joke” about her politics and her looks. Jarrett, who is Black, advised Barack and Michelle Obama.

Barr’s now-deleted tweet read: “muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj.” It was part of a busy period on Twitter for Barr, who wrote tweets or retweeted attacks on Michael Moore, Chelsea Clinton and George Soros. In her apology, Barr said the Jarrett comment was “in bad taste.” She also later clarified, “Muslims r NOT a race.”

Yet this wasn’t the first time Barr has compared a Black official to an ape.

In 2013, The Daily Beast reported she called Obama National Security Adviser Susan Rice “a man with big swinging ape balls.”

In response to Barr’s initial tweet, Wanda Sykes, who served as a consulting producer on the rebooted 1980s-1990s sitcom tweeted she won’t return for a second season.

However, no second season will come to fruition and several stars celebrated ABC’s decision to give “Roseanne” the axe. Still, others lamented the fact that the rest of the cast and crew are out of a job.

National Action Network president Rev. Al Sharpton issued a statement saying ABC “had done the right thing by immediately canceling ‘Roseanne,'” adding “there is no place in media for racism.” Earlier this morning, he called on the network to “take action now” in response to Barr’s tweet.

Additionally, several cast members have spoken out.

“As I called my manager to quit working on ‘Roseanne,’ I found out the show got canceled,” actress Emma Kenney said in a now-deleted tweet. “I feel so empowered by Channing Dungey and those at ABC standing up against abuse of power and lack of values. Bullies do not ever win. Ever.”

She added, “I am hurt, embarrassed, and disappointed. The racist and distasteful comments from Roseanne are inexcusable.”

“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,” tweeted Sara Gilbert. “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.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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