The second season of the AMC show Talking with Chris Hardwick was set to debut on Sunday night with guest Donald Glover, but the season was shelved after actress Chloe Dykstra went public with sexual and emotional abuse allegations believed to be about her ex-boyfriend, Chris Hardwick. On Saturday, the network pulled the show from the schedule pending an investigation and issued a statement regarding Hardwick, who also hosts The Walking Dead after show Talking Dead for the same network. From Washington Post:
“We have had a positive working relationship with Chris Hardwick for many years,” the network said in a statement. “We take the troubling allegations that surfaced [last week] very seriously. While we assess the situation, ‘Talking with Chris Hardwick’ will not air on AMC, and Chris has decided to step aside from moderating planned AMC and BBC America panels at Comic-Con International in San Diego next month.”
“Talking With Chris Hardwick” began as part of AMC’s after-show franchise, with Hardwick interviewing cast members and fans of popular shows including “Breaking Bad” and “The Walking Dead.” Last year, the network announced that Hardwick would host a broader, one-hour talk show. “Talking” was scheduled to begin its second season Sunday with Donald Glover as the guest. Instead, AMC showed a previously aired episode of “Ride With Norman Reedus.”
Among the Comic-Con panels Hardwick was scheduled to moderate was <em>The Doctor Who panel featuring Jodie Whitaker, the first woman to play The Doctor in the show’s 55-year history.
Hardwick issued a statement to Deadline on Friday night denying Dykstra’s allegations, which entailed sexual abuse and attempts to blacklist her following their breakup.
“These are very serious allegations and not to be taken lightly which is why I’ve taken the day to consider how to respond,” said Hardwick in a statement Friday night. “I was heartbroken to read Chloe’s post. Our three year relationship was not perfect—we were ultimately not a good match and argued—even shouted at each other—but I loved her, and did my best to uplift and support her as a partner and companion in any way and at no time did I sexually assault her.”
“When we were living together, I found out that Chloe had cheated on me, and I ended the relationship,” Hardwick asserts. “For several weeks after we broke up, she asked to get back together with me and even told me she wanted to have kids with me, ‘build a life’ with me and told me that I was ‘the one,’ but I did not want to be with someone who was unfaithful,” he added in the carefully crafted response. “I’m devastated to read that she is now accusing me of conduct that did not occur. l was blindsided by her post and always wanted the best for her. As a husband, a son, and future father, I do not condone any kind of mistreatment of women.”
Hardwick also hosts the NBC gameshow The Wall, but according to a statement issued by the network, his future there is uncertain.
“These allegations about Chris Hardwick took us by surprise as we have had a positive working relationship with him,” read a statement published in Dateline on Saturday. “However, we take allegations of misconduct very seriously. Production on The Wall does not begin until September, and in the meantime we are continuing to assess the situation and will take appropriate action based on the outcome.”
Shortly after Dykstra’s unlisted Medium essay detailing her allegations went viral on Friday, the geek-culture outlet Nerdist issued a statement distancing itself from its founder Hardwick, who sold the company to Legendary Digital Networks, but until last week, was listed as its CEO. Nerdist promptly scrubbed all mention of Hardwick from its site.