John Goodman: ‘Roseanne Barr’s tweet didn’t seem true at first’


John Goodman initially struggled to accept the news about his co-star Roseanne Barr’s offensive tweet because it “just didn’t seem true”.

The actor’s revived TV sitcom Roseanne was cancelled in May (18) after his co-star tweeted a comment about Valerie Jarrett, a former advisor to U.S. President Barack Obama, which many deemed to be racist.

Roseanne later gave her permission for a spin-off called The Conners to be created without her involvement, featuring her former co-stars John, Sara Gilbert and Laurie Metcalf.

The trio sat down for a chat with People magazine to discuss the new show, which premieres later this month (Oct18), and John opened up about his reaction over Roseanne’s messages for the first time, admitting he struggled to process the news.

The actor recalled first hearing of the tweet “in my kitchen and maybe my daughter or my wife told me,” before adding, “It just didn’t seem true. Then it got true. I was consciously trying to accept it.”

Oscar nominee Laurie said she was on Broadway at the time and found out by watching the news. She recalled, “I (first) thought, ‘Oh, I wonder if we still have a show.’ Because of how heavy everything became.”

She added that the fallout was “hard to wrap our heads around” and she prepared herself for the show’s cancellation.

The Big Lebowski actor also said that he held onto the hope of resurrecting the program, with him explaining, “There was the feeling of not wanting it to go away until we were ready. There was a debt owed to this fictional family. We want to finish telling this story.”

However, when the idea for the spin-off came about, they were hesitant because it was a risky move, but they collectively decided to do it. They feel grateful towards Roseanne for giving them a chance to pursue The Conners, something John called a “very big deal”.

The Talk star Sara added, “Any sadness that we feel over what we’ve lost we’re hopefully channelling in an honest way into the show.”

While John concluded, “Let us finish the story on our own terms. Come along with us and see how we do.”

The Conners will premiere in the U.S. on 16 October.