Netflix has announced that actor Danny Masterson is no longer working on The Ranch as of Tuesday. Masterson, who is also known for appearing on That ’70s Show, has been accused of rape and sexual assault by four women and is currently under investigation by the Los Angeles County District Attorney and the LAPD. Masterson has denied the allegations, which he calls “outrageous.”
“As a result of ongoing discussions, Netflix and the producers have written Danny Masterson out of The Ranch,” a Netflix spokesperson said in a statement. “Yesterday was his last day on the show, and production will resume in early 2018 without him.”
Netflix has faced mounting pressure to act on the Masterson allegations over the past several days, especially after taking action against Kevin Spacey and Louis C.K. The news of Masterson’s departure comes shortly after a HuffPost report in which one of his alleged victims approached a Netflix executive on the sidelines of a children’s soccer game in Los Angeles to ask him why Netflix had not taken action against Masterson. According to her account and that of a witness, the executive, who was not aware the woman was one of Masterson’s accusers, told her, “We don’t believe them.”
Netflix confirmed that the executive was Andy Yeatman and called his comments “careless” and “uninformed.”
The fourth installment of The Ranch is set to premiere on Netflix on Dec. 15. “I am obviously very disappointed in Netflix’s decision to write my character off of The Ranch,” Masterson said, according to a statement provided to HuffPost. “From day one, I have denied the outrageous allegations against me. I have never been charged with a crime, let alone convicted of one. In this country, you are presumed innocent until proven guilty. However, in the current climate, it seems as if you are presumed guilty the moment you are accused. I understand and look forward to clearing my name once and for all.”
At least three of the women who have accused Masterson belonged to the Church of Scientology, of which Masterson is a longtime member.