On Sunday PBS announced that they will edit out Al Franken’s appearance from the Monday’s broadcast of the Kennedy Center’s Mark Twain Prize ceremony honoring David Letterman. The event, which was taped on October 22nd at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.
The decision was made after allegations were made that Franken has been guilty of sexual misconduct. PBS said in a statement that including Franken in the broadcast would “distract from the show’s purpose as a celebration of American Humor.”
The special will air on PBS on Monday November 20th at 8pm, and will include appearances by Jimmy Kimmel, Norm Macdonald, Steve Martin, John Mulaney, Bill Murray, Amy Schumer, Paul Shaffer, Martin Short, Eddie Vedder, Jimmie Walker, Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, and of course David Letterman.
In other news, amidst rumors that writers were planning to write his character, Maura Pfefferman, out of the next season, Jeffrey Tambor has announced that he is stepping away from his critically acclaimed series Transparent. Tambor’s role has been groundbreaking for television and the trans community but the series has become tainted by the allegations of sexual harassment leveled against Tambor in recent weeks.
Tambor told Variety, “playing Maura Pfefferman on ‘Transparent’ has been one of the greatest privileges and creative experiences of my life. What has become clear over the past weeks, however, is that this is no longer the job I signed up for four years ago.” He continued to deny any misconduct but went on to say that he deeply regrets if any of his actions were misinterpreted as acts of aggression. “Given the politicized atmosphere that seems to have afflicted our set, I don’t see how I can return to ‘Transparent,” he said. In prior statements, Tambor admitted to being “volatile and ill-tempered” and of expressing opinions harshly and without tact, but the actor remained emphatic that he is not a predator.
The latest person tied to the comedy industry to come under attack is Def Comedy Jam producer Russell Simmons. New allegations accuse the music and comedy producer of sexual assault in 1991.