‘The Rookie’: How Talia Bishop Was Written off the Show After Afton Williamson Opened up About Alleged Harassment
Afton Williamson who played Talia Bishop on The Rookie claimed she was sexually harassed and discriminated against while working on the show. She walked away from her role and now the show has returned.
How was Talia written off and what do fans have to say about it? Here is everything you need to know.
Afton Williamson said she reported sexual harassment and racial discrimination
Williamson opened up about her time working on The Rookie on Instagram. She said she left after reporting sexual harassment and racial discrimination.
“Throughout the filming of the pilot, I experienced Racial Discrimination/Racially Charged inappropriate comments from the hair department and bullying from Executive Producers,” she wrote in an Instagram post.
“During the Season, it continued along with Sexual Harassment from a recurring guest star, Demetrius Grosse, and the racist commentary & bullying from the Hair Dept. Head, Sally Ciganovich escalated into Sexual Assault at our Wrap party,” she added.
She wrote that she reported this to showrunner, Alexi Hawley yet it wasn’t reported to HR. The actress claimed she was eventually asked to work with Grosse again at the end of the season.
An investigation claimed there was no inappropriate behavior
A third party investigated the matter and found no one named by Williamson “in an unlawful manner or demonstrate[d] behavior inappropriate for the workplace,” according to TV Line.
Grosse eventually released a statement through his attorney regarding this sexual harassment allegation. The statement given to Variety claimed:
Demetrius Grosse was wrongfully accused and has been exonerated of the alleged misconduct regarding his work on The Rookie…. My client was libeled all over the media before any of the claims could even be verified. No one should publish serious allegations like these in such a reckless manner. Demetrius lost multiple jobs as a result of being falsely accused. We’re glad that the investigation has been completed and are grateful to eOne for its unwavering support. Onward.
Williamson reacted to this news on Instagram. “What saddens me the most is that the lengths that were taken to Deceive, Lie, and Cover Up the Truth, were far greater than those made to Protect and Maintain a Safe Working Environment for Employees,” started her caption.
She continued, “It’s Heartbreaking for everyone on that set; Past and Present. And for every Actor out there who Stands in the Face Of Harassment and Discrimination, Assault and Injustice. As a Black Woman, an Artist, an Actor, in 2019.”
Talia took another job
The character wasn’t killed off the show. Talia simply took another job at ATF (the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives), according to TV Line.
“It’s not going to be quite the same without Talia,” Nolan (Nathan Fillion) told Jessica (Sarah Shahi) in the episode. Jessica then said, “taking that job over at ATF was smart [for Talia]. She was never going to have the career she wanted at the LAPD, not after she lied about her brother [on her PHQ].”
Fans shared their reactions to this news on Twitter. “Good to know that Talia is still employed, although it’s no longer with the LAPD. #TheRookie,” one fan tweeted. Another fan wasn’t as happy with the decision tweeting, “That’s the only send off we get for Talia? Dang. #TheRookie S2E1.”
Time will tell if the character will be mentioned again in the future. For now it looks like the show will continue to go down this new direction.