Rick and Morty creator Dan Harmon has apologized for a recently resurfaced video he created years ago after. The video's unearthing resulted in Harmon completely deleting his Twitter account. The video, and the controversy that has come along as a result, comes just days after Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn was fired by Disney over a series of old, offensive tweets that reappeared online.
The video that started making the rounds was a sketch intended to be a Showtime pilot. It was a spoof of the series Dexter and featured Dan Harmon as a character who travels through time to stop serial killers by raping them as infants. Harmon is seen in the sketch breaking into a house and mimicking a sexual assault on a life-like infant doll. Harmon had this to say in a statement.
"In 2009, I made a 'pilot' which strove to parody the series Dexter and only succeeded in offending. I quickly realized the content was way too distasteful and took the video down immediately. Nobody should ever have to see what you saw and for that, I sincerely apologize."
Even with the apology and the fact that this video was made in 2009, there have been questions as to whether or not Cartoon Network's Adult Swim would take any action. Rick and Morty, which was recently renewed for another 70 episodes by the network, is wildly popular and features Dan Harmon as one of the chief creative forces, along with Justin Roiland, who voices the two main characters. Adult Swim also released a statement on the matter. Here's what they had to say.
"At Adult Swim, we seek out and encourage creative freedom and look to push the envelope in many ways, particularly around comedy. The offensive content of Dan's 2009 video that recently surfaced demonstrates poor judgement and does not reflect the type of content we seek out. Dan recognized his mistake at the time and has apologized. He understands there is no place for this type of content here at Adult Swim."
While the statement doesn't explicitly address Dan Harmon's employment status with the network, it appears as though they aren't going to fire him. It would surely be different if this video were created and released by Harmon recently. However, since it wasn't, Adult Swim seems to be accepting of his apology. Disney is a much larger company, but they took a very different approach with the James Gunn tweets, firing him promptly. In the wake of Disney's decision, many have come to Gunn's defense, including several members of the Guardians of the Galaxy cast and fellow filmmakers.
Earlier this year, Dan Harmon admitted to sexual misconduct against a former writer on his show Community, Megan Ganz, and apologized for his actions on Twitter and on an episode of his podcast at length. Harmon is currently working on Rick and Morty season 4, which doesn't yet have a release date. This news comes to us courtesy of The Hollywood Reporter.