The sitcom reboot was abruptly cancelled after Roseanne Barr spent the night on Twitter promoting conspiracy theories and making racist comments. On Tuesday morning, executive producer Dave Caplan had to learn through the news that his first day working on the new season might be his last. By 11 a.m., ABC executives had cancelled Roseanne despite its massive success over the previous season.
Caplan spoke to The Hollywood Reporter shortly after the announcement. He did the interview before Barr returned to Twitter that night, while the wound was still fresh in his mind. The veteran producer and writer broke down his day and explained the emotional roller coaster of the cancellation to reporters, before turning to the question of whether Barr will get back on TV any time soon.
"There's been chatter on social media that Fox, given the network's new broader direction with Tim Allen's Last Man Standing, would be a fit to pick up Roseanne after the dust settles here," the interviewer pointed out.
"I would be surprised if [Barr] returned in any form. I think she probably has personal things she needs to deal with. I don't think there's any room for any kind of conservativism on TV that borders on racism. I'm sure that's not what they intend to do on Last Man Standing. I wish them all the best. And I think there is room for all kinds of voices on television — as long as they're respectful, humane and thoughtful. So if that's what they're going to do with Last Man, then I applaud them for that."
Many die-hard Roseanne fans are already lobbying other outlets to revive the sitcom. The precedent is strong, as Fox just revived an ABC sitcom this year. Last Man Standing was cancelled by ABC after six seasons. It laid dormant for over a year while its audience cried out for a conservative show, and finally, Fox agreed to bring it back.
Roseanne might not get so lucky, however. Even before the reboot aired its controversial first episode earlier this year, many were baffled that ABC got back into business with Barr in the first place. In the last decade, she has made a point of espousing conspiracy theories and throwing out racist comments on social media.
Caplan, along with the rest of the cast and crew of Roseanne, found out about the cancellation through the news along with the rest of us. Barr was reportedly the only one who got a warning phone call from the network.