FOX has decided to renew its action drama series Lethal Weapon for a third season, but it’s not exactly that cut and dry. Word broke last week that star Clayne Crawford, who plays Martin Riggs, was in line to be fired from the series owing to “bad behavior” on set. Indeed, FOX announced today that Lethal Weapon Season 3 is happening, but Crawford will no longer be part of the show. Instead, Seann William Scott has been cast as “a new character who folds into a partnership with Murtaugh (Damon Wayans),” leaving this Lethal Weapon TV series without a Riggs.
The is the first series regular role for Scott, who first broke out as part of the American Pie franchise but who has shown considerable range through films like Role Models, The Rundown, and Goon.
Lethal Weapon was something of a bubble show for a renewal, averaging a 1.7 rating and a multi-platform audience of 8.6 million, but the series does well internationally. Kate Arthur of Buzzfeed reports that one of the reasons FOX opted to renew the series without Crawford was to “make the point that bad behavior will get you fired.” Arthur cites sources close to the show who say Crawford was “abusive to his cast and crew” and once had an outburst in front of children, for which he was reprimanded and docked pay. Apparently the “bad behavior” continued, and FOX made the decision to remove the actor from the series entirely.
This marks the next dramatic development in what’s shaping up to be an eventful upfronts season, as FOX on Thursday cancelled three of its main comedies: Brooklyn Nine-Nine, The Last Man on Earth, and The Mick. Fan outcry was so intense that Brooklyn Nine-Nine has now been picked up by NBC, but FOX also axed its drama series The Exorcist and Lucifer, upsetting fans even further.
We’re only just getting started as this week the networks will begin to unveil their new lineups this week. Stay tuned.