Leave it to Stifler to save the day. Seann William Scott has been hired to replace the fired Clayne Crawford in Fox’s TV adaptation of Lethal Weapon, securing the well-performing procedural a third season renewal.
Scott will step in as a new character playing off Damon Wayans’ Roger Murtaugh. The Hollywood Reporter says sources tell them Scott will play the brother of Crawford’s Martin Riggs in order to maintain the family name so closely associated with the franchise.
Warner Bros. Television, which produces the Fox drama, officially announced Crawford’s firing just before revealing the addition of Scott. The axing follows two reports of bad behavior on the show’s set, for which Crawford was forced to publicly apologize. One incident involved the actor lashing out at a guest director and assistant director over what he perceived to be “working conditions that did not feel safe or conductive to good work,” as Crawford said in his statement. That led to the actor meeting with human resources, completing therapy, and sharing a “sizable portion” of his paycheck with one of the offended parties, all at the studio’s request. Even so, a second incident occurred during an episode which Crawford was directing after an actor was hit by a piece of shrapnel from an effect and complained about the unsafe conditions.
Warners reprimanded Crawford in each situation, but ultimately determined his behavior was not changing. They decided to part ways with the show’s star before optioning it for renewal to Fox. The program was “on the bubble” with Crawford attached, despite being Fox’s fifth-most-watched drama. With Crawford out, Fox quickly rewarded it with a renewal for Season 3.
Responding to the news, Crawford posted an Instagram image of himself on set with a note that read in part, “To my cast and crew – CONGRATULATIONS on season 3! To the Fans – Thank you for the overwhelming support and love.” He did not, however, directly address Scott’s casting.
Read both Crawford’s original apology and his congratulatory message below.