Fred Savage has been fired as a director and executive producer of ABC’s “The Wonder Years” reboot over inappropriate conduct (via Deadline). The news comes after 20th Century Television received multiple complaints of inappropriate set behavior from Savage and, after an investigation, decided to sever ties with him.
In a statement, the studio confirmed the news but did not offer specifics about the nature of the complaints.
“Recently, we were made aware of allegations of inappropriate conduct by Fred Savage, and as is policy, an investigation was launched,” a spokesman for 20th Century Television said. “Upon its completion, the decision was made to terminate his employment as an executive producer and director of ‘The Wonder Years.’”
Savage rose to prominence as a child actor in the 1980s for his roles as The Grandson in “The Princess Bride” and Kevin Arnold on the original run of “The Wonder Years.” The latter role made him the youngest Emmy nominee ever, but he soon decided to prioritize his directing career.
Throughout the 2000s and 2010s, Savage quietly established himself as a prolific TV comedy director. He has helmed episodes of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” “Party Down,” “Black-ish,” “Modern Family,” and “The Conners,” among many others. He directed eight episodes of ABC’s reboot of “The Wonder Years” in addition to serving as an executive producer.
This is not the first allegation of inappropriate workplace conduct from Savage. He was accused of verbally harassing crew members on his 2015 sitcom “The Grinder,” though an investigation from 20th Century cleared him of wrongdoing at the time. And his original “Wonder Years” co-star Alley Mills recently said that the show was cancelled due to a sexual harassment lawsuit against Savage, although she called the claim “ridiculous.”
Savage’s firing adds even more question marks to the show’s already uncertain future. It has not yet been renewed for a second season, though it remains in contention as Season 1 wraps up.
The reboot was created by Saladin K. Patterson, and stars Elisha Williams, Dulé Hill, Saycon Sengbloh, and Laura Kariuki, with Don Cheadle serving as the show’s narrator. The series moves the show’s setting to Montgomery, Alabama and tells the story of a Black family in the late 1960s.