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Clayne Crawford, the former leading co-star of TV show Lethal Weapon, was fired in May following accusations of unspecified bad behaviour on set, including “emotional abuse” and “creating a hostile environment.”
In a two-hour expletive-laced podcast recorded on Aug. 28 and titled “What REALLY Happened On The Set of Lethal Weapon,” Crawford outlined his perspective on his firing.
The reports of his on-set behaviour were published the very day he started to direct his first-ever Lethal Weapon episode. He claimed Warner Bros. Television (the studio that creates the show) set him up to fail by letting him direct a Season 2 episode after he threatened to quit after Season 1. He also clarified that he and former co-star Damon Wayans never really got along, and he said that neither of them really wanted to do the show in the first place.
“I was only … able to direct an episode of Season 2 because I did not want to come back for Season 2,” he said. “It was such a s**tshow Season 1, I felt like I had been lied to — they told me Damon was so excited.”
Crawford also challenged the media coverage of his firing, as well as multiple tweets by Wayans that purportedly showcased Crawford’s on-set violence. He said he was blackmailed by Warner Bros. to keep quiet about his not-so-rosy relationship with Wayans.
At the time, Wayans posted a graphic video of what happened during the Crawford-directed episode. (After posting this series of tweets, Wayans deleted his Twitter account entirely; all the photos below are screengrabs of his account while active.)
In the video, which is no longer playable, Wayans is seen getting struck on the head by shrapnel.
A photo posted later shows Wayans with a bloody cut on the opposite side of his head, and he questions his on-set safety.
Wayans’ next tweet provides an explanation for his injury, and the actor seems to implicate Crawford by tagging him and hashtagging “#noapology.”
Wayans continued to tweet accusations and photos. One photo shows a sticker affixed to a post on the Warner Bros. TV lot, reading “Clayne Crawford is an emotional terrorist.”
Wayans also accused Crawford of seeking to make women cry and striking fear in cast and crew members. He called out a specific event when Crawford allegedly “hit another actor in the mouth with a bottle of green tea and busted his mouth open.”
Wayans claimed the victim was Lance Henriksen, the actor best-known for playing android Bishop in the Alien franchise.
Wayans ended his tweetstorm by saying Crawford has a “file of infractions” and used the hashtag “#releasethetapes,” further insinuating that Warner Bros. may have more evidence it’s not sharing with the public. Wayans said goodbye to Twitter and his account was deleted.
“That’s a blatant f**king lie,” said Crawford in the podcast about a report of him yelling at children near the Lethal Weapon set while he was directing. “Clearly, I’m yelling the guy whose job it is to get the set quiet. Did I make a poor choice? Absolutely. I felt embarrassed in the moment because I was belligerent, I was so angry. We’d been shooting a three-page scene for eight hours. We were so behind and we continued to try to shoot through all this noise. We stopped production over seven times. I called my agents, was writing emails, called everyone to try to resolve the situation. No one would come in and help us.”
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Crawford said he asked Warner Bros. Television president Peter Roth how he could allow Wayans to “put this slander s**t out there.” He said that Roth told him to apologize to Wayans to make amends so things could flow more smoothly.
“This kind of s**t would come up all the time and I’d go and complain,” he said on the podcast. “Once they had that tape , anytime I complained they’d say this will come out and it will ruin your career. When the incident happened, I had to pay half my salary for that episode. I had to spend six weeks in anger management every day on my lunch break and had to be escorted from my trailer on set by a security guard. It was humiliating.”
As for the injuries suffered by Wayans, Crawford dismissed them, saying that “guys have cut themselves worse shaving.”
“He was blaming others when it was a ricochet,” he said. “To go around and ask us to sign a get-well card? That was the show. I’ve worked with A-list stars and have never seen anyone treat someone the way they treated him: They’d reward his extremely poor behaviour constantly, which only fuelled the fire.”
Clearly, Crawford felt that Wayans was attempting to sabotage his directorial debut.
“We get into the car and I looked at him and said, ‘You’re a p***y,'” Crawford said, and he allegedly said to Wayans that his six-year-old son could have “taken a better hit” than he did. “I was so disappointed in him. I just didn’t know where else to go. I’d been putting up with this bulls**t for two years … he just sabotaged everything and did it in a very passive-aggressive way.”
From there, the podcast spiralled into insults about Wayans.
“ only famous because of Keenan. That’s when things got heated and he told me to suck his p***y d**k … I ripped his a**. I told him that we could bring Steve Harvey in from the Family Feud today and the audience would embrace it. I told him we could bring f**king Keenan out of retirement. S**t, we could take Damon Jr., who is a great guy and a great actor… I ripped his a** because I’d had enough. I had to tell him what I thought of him and that he’s a waste of space and that nobody cares.”
It was a different story prior to Crawford’s firing when he issued an Instagram apology.
Crawford concluded the podcast by saying he’s never watching anything on Fox — the American broadcaster — ever again.
Wayans told the media that Season 3 of Lethal Weapon is “definitely a lot lighter in tone and we’re having fun, on and off set.” He wished Crawford the best and added, “Onward and upward for everybody.”
Seann William Scott (Goon, American Pie) will be taking over Crawford’s role going forward.
Warner Bros. Television has not commented publicly on Crawford’s statements.
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