Belfast Telegraph

Roseanne Barr condemned as stars react with disgust to ‘racist’ comments

The comedian compared a former Barack Obama adviser to an ape.

Roseanne Barr has been widely condemned as stars reacted with disgust to her comments comparing a former Barack Obama adviser to an ape.

US TV network ABC cancelled Barr’s show, Roseanne, after she sent a tweet referring to Valerie Jarrett as a product of the Muslim Brotherhood and the Planet of the Apes.

Barr, 65, later deleted the tweet and apologised before saying she would be quitting Twitter.

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US actress and comedian Roseanne Barr, who has faced widespread criticism for her ‘racist’ comments about a former Barack Obama staffer (Steve Parsons/PA)

As well as ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey announcing the cancellation of her show, Barr was also dropped by the talent agency ICM Partners.

Jarret has also responded to the incident.

Speaking on MSNBC, she said: “I’m fine. I’m worried about the people out there who don’t have a circle of friends and followers who come right to their defence.”

Elsewhere, stars lined up to attack Barr.

Writing on Twitter, British actress Minnie Driver, who stars in ABC’s Speechless, wrote: “So proud of @ABCNetwork for having the ethical compunction to cancel #Rosanne despite the show’s huge numbers. We too make a show about a middle class family, come and watch us instead #speechless @Speechless_ABC.”

Sara Gilbert, who starred alongside Barr in Roseanne, labelled her comments “abhorrent”.

She said: “Roseanne’s recent comments about Valerie Jarrett, and so much more, are abhorrent and do not reflect the beliefs of our cast and crew or anyone associated with our show. I am disappointed in her actions to say the least.”

Another of Barr’s co-stars, Emma Kenney, revealed she was ready to quit the show in protest at the comments.

She tweeted: “I am hurt, embarrassed, and disappointed. The racist and distasteful comments from Roseanne are inexcusable.

“As I called my manager to quit working on Roseanne, I was told it was cancelled. I feel so empowered by @iamwandasykes, Channing Dungey and anyone at ABC standing up for morals and abuse of power. Bullies will NEVER win.”

Film director Ava DuVernay posted a photo of Dungey, along with the words: “For the record, this is Channing Dungey. Sitting on top of your world like a Queen in full judgement of your garbage and taking it out. #Roseanne.”

And singer Cher also slammed Barr.

She said: “Feel sorry 4 cast and crew of Rosanne. Her racism left good ppl out in the cold, without jobs. Those ppl MUST pay bills,take care of their kids,or parents.”

In March, Barr told ABC’s Good Morning America that Donald Trump had called her to congratulate the ratings success her revived sitcom had experienced.

Barr has been a vocal backer of the US president and also plays one of his supporters in Roseanne.

At the time Barr said the the Republican was happy for her, adding: “I’ve known him for many years and he’s done a lot of nice things for me over the years.”

The return of Roseanne was watched by an estimated 18.4 million viewers in the US. Its original run came to an end in May 1997.

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