Fred Savage Fired As ‘The Wonder Years’ EP/Director After Investigation – Deadline
EXCLUSIVE: Disney is severing ties with Fred Savage following multiple misconduct complaints in his role as executive producer and director of freshman ABC comedy series The good years, produced by 20th Television, part of Disney Television Studios. The allegations were investigated, leading to Savage’s dismissal.
The good yearsa reboot of the beloved 1988 series, which starred Savage, has yet to be renewed for a second season but remains in contention.
“Recently we became aware of allegations of inappropriate conduct by Fred Savage, and as policy dictates, an investigation was launched. Upon completion, the decision was made to terminate his employment as executive producer and director of The good yearsa spokesperson for 20th Television said in a statement to Deadline, declining further comment.
Details about the nature of the allegations are unclear, but I heard they included verbal outbursts and inappropriate behavior. Deadline has reached out to Savage reps for comment.
Savage has faced misconduct charges in the past.
In 2018, The good years actress Alley Mills claimed the cancellation of the original series followed a “completely ridiculous sexual harassment lawsuit” filed by a client against Savage (then 16) and Jason Hervey (then 20), which Mills, who played Savage and Hervey’s mother on the show, said was settled out of court.
In the same year, a member of the Savage’s Fox series The grinder filed a lawsuit, accusing the actor of assaulting and harassing her on the set of the show in 2015. At the time, Savage called the allegations “completely baseless and absolutely untrue,” while 20th Television, who produced the show, said that after investigating the allegations, he found no evidence of wrongdoing on Savage’s part. This lawsuit was also eventually settled out of court.
The accusations are likely a shock to a generation of Americans who grew up with Savage and his wildly popular characters as a child actor: he played the grandson in the 1987 modern classic The princess to be marriedand Kevin Arnold, a teenager growing up in a middle-class suburban family in the late 1960s and early 1970s, on the original wonderful years series that aired on ABC from 1988 to 1993. He was 12 when he was cast in the series, and at 13 he received the first of two Emmy nominations for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, becoming the youngest actor ever nominated in the category.
Savage then branched out and worked largely behind the camera as a director. On the new The wonderful years he directed eight Season 1 episodes, including the pilot, in addition to executive producing the show, which follows the black middle-class Williams family in Montgomery, AL, during the turbulent late 1960s.