A former co-star is defending comedian Roseanne Barr after she was fired from her show and accused of being a racist.
In an interview with the British Sunday Times, actor John Goodman came to the embattled actress’s defense, saying he believed her tweet, in which she joked about former Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett’s likeness to a Planet of the Apes character, was taken out of context.
From the Sunday Times:
“I know for a fact that she’s not a racist,” he said, before suggesting that he was not entirely supportive of ABC’s decision to cancel the sitcom. “I’ll put it this way, I was surprised at the response,” Goodman said clearly choosing his words carefully. “And that’s probably all I should say about it.”
Goodman also revealed the new Roseanne spinoff The Conners, set to debut in October, would likely feature a storyline in which the beloved protagonist would be killed off.
Regarding how spinoff series The Conners will address Barr’s absence, Goodman said, “It’s an unknown. I guess he’ll be mopey and sad because his wife’s dead.”
On Monday, Barr thanked Goodman for speaking up for her, despite potential retaliation from the ABC network.
“I thank John Goodman for speaking truth about me, despite facing certain peril from producers and network,” Barr wrote in a tweet.
I thank John Goodman for speaking truth about me, despite facing certain peril from producers and network.
— Roseanne Barr (@therealroseanne) August 28, 2018
Explaining her previous tweet in a video released in July, Roseanne claimed she made the joke in reference to Iran and because she didn’t know Jarrett was black.
“I thought the bitch was white!” Barr yelled in the video uploaded to her YouTube channel last month.
The Roseanne reboot, which premiered in March, earned ABC some of its highest ratings in years, with an estimated 18 million viewers tuning in to the 90s sitcom revival.