Adult Swim Dumps Rick and Morty Star

Channel acts after domestic violence charges emerge against Justin Roiland, show's co-creator
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2023 1:16 AM CST
Updated Jan 25, 2023 7:25 AM CST
Rick and Morty Star Has Been Dealing With Domestic Violence Charges Since 2020
Justin Roiland poses for a portrait to promote the television series "Rick and Morty" on day two of Comic-Con International, July 21, 2017, in San Diego.   (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)
UPDATE Jan 25, 2023 7:25 AM CST

Justin Roiland is out at Rick and Morty. Deadline reports that the Adult Swim channel cut ties with the show's 42-year-old co-creator and executive producer, who also voiced both main characters, after domestic violence charges from 2020 came to light earlier this month. "Adult Swim has ended its association with Justin Roiland" was the curt statement on Tuesday from an Adult Swim/Cartoon Network spokesperson. The voices of Rick and Morty will be recast. The decision to ditch Roiland leaves co-creator Dan Harmon as the sole showrunner for the program, with Adult Swim "[not] even halfway through a massive 70-episode order for the show," per the Hollywood Reporter. The show has wrapped up six seasons, with a renewal through Season 10.

Jan 13, 2023 1:16 AM CST

A big name behind the animated comedy series Rick and Morty stands accused of domestic violence. Justin Roiland, who co-created the Adult Swim show and voices both titular characters, was charged with domestic battery and false imprisonment in May 2020, but the incident hasn't been publicly reported until now, per NBC News. Roiland was arrested in August 2020 and released on bond; he was arraigned later that year and pleaded not guilty. A protective order issued that year bars him from harassing, threatening, or going within 100 yards of an unnamed person. More than a dozen court hearings, including pretrial hearings, have followed, but no trial date has yet been set.

The alleged domestic violence took place on or around Jan. 19, 2020, in California's Orange County, and involved a woman Roiland, now 42, was dating at the time. No details have been made public, but the specific charges are one felony count of domestic battery with corporal injury and one felony count of false imprisonment by menace, violence, fraud, and/or deceit.

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In addition to Rick and Morty, Roiland has co-created and/or voiced characters in other series, released a video game through his game studio, sold a painting at auction, and released multiple NFT art collections. People notes that Dan Harmon, the other Rick and Morty co-creator, has faced his own legal problems, including admitting to sexually harassing a former writer on another show of his, Community. (More domestic violence stories.)

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