Earlier in the month, Netflix fired one of the stars of their show The Ranch, Danny Masterson. The firing, stemming from accusations of rape made against Masterson in March, came after a wave of firings, resignations and other controversies involving sexual misconduct. But the streaming company has now also let go of Andy Yeatman, director of global kids content at Netflix, after a HuffPost piece revealed he told one of Masterson’s accusers that he did not believe the allegations.
In the fallout of the purge of sexual offenders that began with Harvey Weinstein, Netflix was criticized for still having Masterson in their employment as an actor and executive producer on The Ranch despite the March 2017 accusations (and a resulting investigation from the LAPD), in which four women accused the actor of raping them in the early 2000s. Netflix had already taken action against House of Cards lead actor Kevin Spacey.
Tuesday, Dec. 5, a day after the HuffPost story about Masterson and Yeatman came out, Netflix released the following statement:
As a result of ongoing discussions, Netflix and the producers have written Danny Masterson out of The Ranch. [Monday] was his last day on the show, and production will resume in early 2018 without him.
One of the anonymous accusers, named “Victim B” in the HuffPost piece, recalled her encounter with Yeatman at a children’s soccer game in Los Angeles. Once Victim B discovered that Yeatman worked for Netflix, she asked him why the company had not yet taken action against Masterson at the time. Yeatman replied that while Netflix takes such allegations seriously, he stated that “we don’t believe” Masterson’s accusers, to which Victim B replied, “I’m one of them.”
Per THR, Yeatman is no longer with Netflix, who said in a statement: “Mr. Yeatman’s comments were careless, uninformed and do not represent the views of the company. Further, he would have no insights into decision making on The Ranch. We are aware of the allegations against Danny Masterson and we are following the current investigation, and will respond if developments occur.”
While Masterson was ultimately let go from the show, he still denies the allegations. The second half of the second season of The Ranch, which still features the actor, will debut on Netflix this Friday, Dec. 15.