'That '70s Show' Star Kicked Off Netflix Show Amid Rape Allegations
Danny Masterson's character is being written out of 'The Ranch' after four women accused him of sexual assault.
Photo by Michael Bezjian/Getty Images for Mulholland Drive Entertainment on behalf of Sabra Dipping Co
On Tuesday, Netflix announced it had cut actor Danny Masterson from The Ranch and is writing his character out of the show in light of several rape allegations against him, Huffington Post reports.
Masterson, who rose to fame playing Hyde on That '70s Show, has been accused of raping four women in the early 2000s. The Los Angeles Police Department has been investigating the allegations for nearly a year, but hasn't filed charges against him. Masterson has long been a member of the Church of Scientology, and three of his accusers are also reportedly members of the Church.
Netflix came under fire for how it handled Masterson in the wake of similar allegations against Kevin Spacey and Louis C.K. The streaming service dropped the second of two stand-up specials C.K. had filmed right after the comedian's sexual misconduct allegations broke, and Netflix announced on Monday that it would be moving forward with the final season of House of Cards without Spacey as its star after temporarily halting production.
Even though an online petition aimed at getting Netflix to cancel The Ranch racked up nearly 40,000 signatures, HuffPo reports that Masterson will appear in the slate of new episodes premiering on Netflix December 15. He's also expected to show up onscreen in a few episodes airing next year.
For his part, Masterson has denied the allegations against him, and told HuffPo he was "very disappointed" by Netflix's decision to remove him from The Ranch.
"From day one, I have denied the outrageous allegations against me," Masterson said in a statement. "I have never been charged with a crime, let alone convicted of one."
Follow Drew Schwartz on Twitter.
Related: Judah Friedlander on Sexual Assault in Comedy