Advertisers said they would have abandoned the show if ABC had not canceled it.
“No advertisers would have run in the show anyway,” said Jason Kanefsky, chief investment officer at Havas Media, a media buying agency. “It would have gone on a list where we won’t run on it. Today is Starbucks [diversity training day] — no one wants to be part of this mess.”
Also on Tuesday, Viacom announced that its cable networks, Paramount Network, TV Land, and CMT, will be pulling syndicated reruns of the old “Roseanne” from their schedules as of Wednesday.
And Barr’s talent agency, ICM, also said it would no longer represent her.
“We are all greatly distressed by the disgraceful and unacceptable tweet from Roseanne Barr this morning,” the company said in a statement. “What she wrote is antithetical to our core values, both as individuals and as an agency. Consequently, we have notified her that we will not represent her. Effective immediately, Roseanne Barr is no longer a client.”
Barr’s claim that she was under the influence of Ambien has many precedents.
The Food and Drug Administration’s guidance on zolpidem includes the warning that “you may get up out of bed while not being fully awake and do an activity that you do not know you are doing. The next morning, you may not remember that you did anything during the night.”
In 2006, Patrick Kennedy, then a Democratic representative from Rhode Island, pleaded guilty to driving under the influence of prescription drugs, specifically Ambien. He claimed that he remembered nothing about the incident, which brought to public attention the sometimes bizarre side effects of the drug.
In 2011, lawyers for a North Carolina man charged with killing eight people and wounding three others during a shooting rampage at a nursing home in 2009 told jurors that he had been under the influence of Ambien and hadn’t been aware of what he was doing. The man was convicted and was sentenced to life in prison.
Barr’s tweets on Tuesday sparked backlash on social media, with users calling on ABC to fire the actress and to suspend the show’s production.
Before the announcement of the show’s cancellation, the comedian Wanda Sykes tweeted that she would not be returning as “consulting producer.”
Other celebrities and actors applauded the network’s move to cancel the show:
The actress Sara Gilbert, who played Barr’s daughter on the show, condemned her co-star’s tweets on social media: