Why hasn’t ’19 Kids and Counting’ been canceled? It’s complicated

29 May 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Is a 19 Kids and Counting Spinoff Happening?.

There’s only one thing more troubling than TLC pulling “19 Kids and Counting” off the air after allegations of child molestation against star Josh Duggar.Following the controversy surrounding 19 Kids and Counting star Josh Duggar’s molestation scandal, Us Weekly has learned that cast members Jessa Duggar and her husband , as well as Jill Duggar and her husband Derick Dillard, are in talks for their own TLC spinoff. The popular program was yanked from TLC’s schedule Friday, a day after Josh Duggar — the oldest of the 19 Duggar kids — said he had “acted inexcusably” and was “deeply sorry” for what he called “my wrongdoing” when he was “a young teenager.” Duggar, 27, also resigned from his high-profile position with the Family Research Council, a conservative lobbying organization.

Now People is reporting that a spinoff show may already be “in the works” at the network—one focusing on the families of newlyweds Jill and Derick Dillard and Jessa and Ben Seewald. Last year, the network canceled “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” after it was reported that Mama June — mother to 9-year-old Alana Thompson, star of the show — was dating a convicted child molester. Although TLC has yet to announce any cancellation plans, sources tell Us they’re actively working towards a spinoff. “They’ve invested a lot of time in developing these story lines and the last thing they want to do is to throw it all away,” a source tells Us of the controversial Christian family’s show, adding that Josh, however, will not be a part of any filming. Two months earlier, Discovery Channel (owned by TLC’s parent company, Discovery Communications) scrapped “Sons of Guns” when star Will Hayden was charged with the rape of a child.

A “404” error message notifies visitors that the “page does not exist.” TLC has pulled the show from its schedule, but has not canceled the program yet. Reality TV has grappled with this since its inception: When you showcase real people, you get very real problems – especially on channels that feature unusual families or personalities. I never dated the guy, I never touched my kid — I think that’s disgusting,” Shannon told Extra in an interview on Tuesday, May 26. “And our show was canceled immediately…It wasn’t no break with us. Despite the this being their second child sex scandal in seven months, 19 Kids still pulls in more than 3 million viewers, and has kept the cable network thriving while competitors have suffered double-digit declines.

Amid the mess — advertisers including Walgreens, David’s Bridal, Payless and more companies have chosen to pull their ads from the network — the Duggar family continues to stand by Josh. In a statement posted to the family’s website, parents Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar said that their 27-year-old son’s “very bad mistakes” caused them to draw closer to God. General Mills, Choice Hotels Intl., Payless Shoe Source, Ace Hardware, David’s Bridal and Pure Leaf Iced Tea are some of the brands working to keep their ads away from “19 Kids.” Most advertisers have deals with TLC or Discovery Communications-owned networks, rather than specific programs.

Certain industry insiders caution against blaming the network or production companies for allowing these cast members on air in the first place, pointing out there’s only so much they can prevent. We are taking steps to have them removed from future episodes.” Walgreens, another major advertiser with the reality TV show, took to Facebook to address the recent controversy: “In the wake of recent news, we are no longer advertising on the program.” Last week, the 27-year-old issued a public apology, saying that he “acted inexcusably” 12 years ago. They take an extraordinary amount of precaution…and Discovery in particular is actually one of the most aggressive [networks] in weeding out background issues,” Pinvidic said. “It’s a really unfortunate bar to be held to: That you’re responsible for every element of someone’s personal life because you’re documenting their life. Pinvidic, who helped develop “Jon & Kate Plus 8” for TLC, said all potential reality stars go through a vetting process, complete with psychological and medical tests. A network will pass on a show if there are any signs of trouble. “Even the slightest twinge of issues, a show never makes it,” he said. “It has to be pretty squeaky clean.

Background checks for reality show subjects, he cautions, are a lot more complicated than many people realize. “It’s quite a process, and I can see how someone might wonder, ‘How did they miss that?’” Myers said. “The reality is that, first, not all records are discoverable to investigators, no matter how hard they look. State laws get even more convoluted: In California, when investigators look into someone’s criminal history, they are only allowed to tell networks about convictions in the last seven years, but not arrests and police reports. Russell added that the pressure has increased on some smaller production companies forced to shell out money for initial background checks – in earlier years of reality TV, the network would foot the bill. Saving money could inspire some to cut corners, Russell said, but that many would never risk it. “For me, as a casting company trying to stay in the game…we are aggressive about our background checks,” Russell said. “We don’t leave any stones unturned, for the very reasons that are so prevalent in the media right now.” As for Discovery Communications specifically, former TLC executive Brant Pinvidic reiterates there’s no way that, for example, the network knew anything about the Josh Duggar allegations. “I would bet anything that there is no possibility Discovery had any knowledge of this whatsoever.

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