The bad news is Chris Hardwick had to sit out San Diego Comic-Con this year, where he was originally scheduled to moderate the panels for AMC’s ‘The Walking Dead’ and ‘Fear the Walking Dead’ and BBC’s ‘Doctor Who’ which marked the first US con appearance by Jodie Whittaker. The good news, however, is that AMC has cleared him of any wrongdoing, stemming from allegations of emotional and sexual abuse made last month by his ex-girlfriend Chloe Dykstra. In addition to his withdrawal from SDCC, Hardwick’s talk show, ‘Talking with Chris Hardwick’ was pulled from the network’s schedule just before it was set to premiere.
AMC issued the following statement:
“Following a comprehensive assessment by AMC, working with Ivy Kagan Bierman of the firm Loeb & Loeb, who has considerable experience in this area, Chris Hardwick will return to AMC as the host of Talking Dead and Talking with Chris Hardwick. We take these matters very seriously and given the information available to us after a very careful review, including interviews with numerous individuals, we believe returning Chris to work is the appropriate step.”
AMC has not yet announced when or if ‘Talking with Chris Hardwick’ will air, considering it was a timely chat program meant to promote specific projects. Already in the can are episodes with special guests Donald Glover, Chris Pratt, Bill Hader, Ethan Hawke, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg.
Upon Hardwick’s suspension, AMC installed frequent guest Yvette Nicole Brown as interim host of ‘Talking Dead’ and a ‘Walking Dead’ season nine preview special. Brown will still host the preview special, but Hardwick will resume hosting of the regular ‘Talking Dead’ chat fest, and is expected to do so on August 12, following the ‘Fear the Walking Dead’ season four mid-season premiere.
Prior to that, AMC will be present at the Television Critics Association press tour, the annual industry gathering where networks preview their upcoming seasons and projects. There may be some more information about Hardwick’s reinstatement then. That takes place on July 29.