Fred Savage, director and executive producer of ABC’s The Wonder Years 2021 reboot, was fired from the comedy series following an investigation into his alleged misconduct.
“Recently, we were made aware of allegations of inappropriate conduct by Fred Savage, and as is policy, an investigation was launched,” a spokesperson for ABC’s parent network, 20th Television, told Deadline in a statement on Friday, May 6. “Upon its completion, the decision was made to terminate his employment as an executive producer and director of The Wonder Years.”
A rep for Savage did not immediately respond to In Touch’s request for comment.
The original series pilot first premiered in January 1988, and starred Savage as teenager Kevin Arnold. The show wrapped its final season in May 1993 following a lawsuit filed by a costume designer, according to The Los Angeles Times. She accused Savage and his costar Jason Hervey of sexual harassment. The two actors were 16 years old and 20 years old at the time, respectively. The case was reportedly settled out of court.
Savage has been accused of negative behavior on other television sets as well. In 2018, he faced accusations from a female crew member on Fox’s The Grinder, who alleged he created a hostile work environment. She claimed that the American Dad! actor “violently struck” her in the arm three times and had a bad reputation for his behavior at work, according to Us Weekly. Savage denied the claims in a statement to the outlet.
“I was made aware that a woman working in the costume department of a show I was on almost three years ago has claimed that I treated her harshly on set simply because she was a woman,” he said in March 2018. “These accusations are completely without merit and absolutely untrue. Fox conducted an extensive internal investigation into her claims, a process in which I fully participated. After concluding a thorough investigation, Fox determined that there was absolutely no evidence to support these accusations. None of her claims could be substantiated because they did not happen.”
At the time, Fox claimed it conducted a “thorough investigation” and that the network “found no evidence of any wrongdoing on the part of Mr. Savage,” as a representative for Twentieth Century Fox said in a statement to the outlet.
In January of that year, actress Alley Mills, who portrayed the Savage and Hervey’s mother on the original series, came to Savage’s defense. She labeled the 1993 Wonder Years lawsuit as “completely ridiculous” in an interview with Vulture.
Three years later, ABC premiered The Wonder Years reboot in September 2021, with Savage as its director and executive producer. It has not been renewed for a second season yet in the wake of Savage’s alleged on-set conduct.
The news of the Chicago native’s alleged conduct comes as a shock to fans of the original show. He received multiple Emmy nominations and other accolades after he was first cast in the show at just 12 years old. Savage later became the youngest actor to be nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, as he was 13 at the time.
Aside from his noteworthy coming-of-age TV character, the actor is also known for his roles in the 1987 film The Princess Bride, Little Monsters and The Wizard. Not only that, but he also directed episodes of well-known TV shows, including Disney shows Boy Meets World, Phil of the Future, That’s So Raven, Even Stevens and Hannah Montana. He delved into directing work with Nickelodeon as well for its highly successful teen comedy series Zoey 101 and Drake & Josh.
Keep scrolling below for everything we know about Savage’s firing.
For access to all our exclusive celebrity videos and interviews – Subscribe on YouTube!
1 of 2