All Rise Creator Greg Spottiswood Fired Following Misconduct Allegations

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CBS and Warner Bros. have severed ties with Greg Spottiswood, the creator and showrunner of All Rise.

The news comes following an investigation into accusations of workplace misconduct, including unprofessional behavior and offensive language.

Co-showrunner, Lawrence Harris, has been elevated to sole showrunner and will oversee the remainder of All Rise Season 2.

Greg Spottiswood

“Warner Bros. Television has relieved ‘All Rise’ executive producer Greg Spottiswood of his duties, effective immediately," reads a statement from Warner Bros., via Deadline.

"Executive producer Dee Harris-Lawrence will continue to serve as showrunner of the series, working closely with fellow executive producers Michael M. Robin and Len Goldstein."

"We remain committed, at all times, to providing a safe and inclusive working environment on our productions and for all employees.”

The news comes following a New York Times article last year that revealed five of the original writers of the series were not returning.

Lola Fights for the Truth - All Rise Season 1 Episode 2

Of those exits, three were the highest-ranking writers of color during All Rise Season 1.

All five of the departing writers are said to have clashed with showrunner Greg Spottiswood over the way the series portrays race and gender.

One of the departing writers, Shernold Edwards, stepped away from the show in November 2019 after realizing “we had to do so much behind the scenes to keep these scripts from being racist and offensive,” according to the aforementioned Times article.

An episode written by Greg Nelson, who is white, was used as an example. It was set to include a subplot about a gang of Latin American teenagers in Los Angeles preying on citizens with machetes.

Drama in the Court - All Rise Season 1 Episode 2

A Latin American writer on staff did not want to be associated with the storyline because it didn't have any correlation with real life.

It wasn't until actress Lindsay Mendez said she would not appear in the episode that Spottiswood agreed to cut the subplot from the episode in question.

Sunil Nayar quit  the show after his efforts to have the series reflect experiences of Black people and other people of color went ignored.

“It became clear to me, when I left the show, that I was only there because I’m the brown guy,” Nayar explained to the Times.

Mark Helps - All Rise Season 1 Episode 2

“Greg hired me to be his brown guy.”

An internal review was carried out in response to what was going on behind the scenes, but Spottiswood was allowed to keep his job.

He was paired with a corporate coach.

“As soon as we became aware of concerns in the All Rise writers’ room, we took steps to conduct a review of the work environment,” a Warner Bros. rep revealed in a statement to the Times last year.

“While the studio identified areas for improvement, the findings did not reveal conduct that would warrant removing series creator Greg Spottiswood from the executive producer role.”

Amy Steps Up - All Rise Season 1 Episode 2

“I acknowledge that I can have a rhetorical, professorial tone in the room, and that can be perceived by some as condescending, and that I can be defensive in creative conversations and debates," Spottiswood said in a statement at the time of the article being unveiled.

"I remain strongly committed to improving my communication style and skills, and to being a more inclusive leader — ensuring that writers and artists are not just heard, but feel listened to, respected, safe and valued.”

He has yet to respond to his firing.

All Rise airs Mondays at 9/8c on CBS. The series is currently awaiting word on a third-season renewal.

Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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