The Flash Fires Hartley Sawyer Over Offensive Social Media Remarks
It looks like Team Flash may be down a member when The Flash returns for it seventh season. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Hartley Sawyer has been fired from The Flash over offensive social media posts from years ago. Sawyer had played Ralph Dibny/the Enlongated man since the fourth season of The Flash.
THR notes that Sawyer’s remarks were made before he joined The Flash in 2014. The Hollywood Reporter also shared a few examples of Sawyer’s resurfaced tweets: “Among the tweets users surfaced in the past two weeks are one from 2012 in which Sawyer wrote ‘The only thing keeping me from doing mildly racist tweets is the knowledge that Al Sharpton would never stop complaining about me.’ In 2014, he wrote, ‘Enjoyed a secret boob viewing at an audition today.’ Several tweets refer to assaulting women, and one reads, ‘Date rape myself so I don’t have to masturbate.’”
The producers of The Flash subsequently issued this statement: “Hartley Sawyer will not be returning for season seven of The Flash. In regards to Mr. Sawyer’s posts on social media, we do not tolerate derogatory remarks that target any race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, or sexual orientation. Such remarks are antithetical to our values and policies, which strive and evolve to promote a safe, inclusive and productive environment for our workforce.”
Additionally, Sawyer acknowledged his posts and shared an apology on his Instagram account.
“My words, irrelevant of being meant with an intent of humor, were hurtful, and unacceptable,” wrote Sawyer. “I am ashamed I was capable of these really horrible attempts to get attention at that time. I regret them deeply. This was not acceptable behavior. These were words I threw out at the time with no thought or recognition of the harm my words could do, and now have done today.”
It’s unclear if Sawyer’s role will be recast. Ralph Dibny’s role was increased in season 6, when the show introduced Natalie Dreyfuss as Sue Dearbon. In the comics, Ralph and Sue eventually married and shared adventures together. The season 6 finale set up a new Ralph and Sue storyline, after she was framed for murder.
How do you feel about Hartley Sawyer’s exit from The Flash? Let us know in the comment section below!
Recommended Reading: The Flash: A Celebration of 75 Years