Variety reports that Nickelodeon has suspended [Update: and now fired, see the full statement below] animator Chris Savino, creator of the network’s popular cartoon The Loud House, reportedly over multiple accusations of sexual harassment. The well-received show—which featured the network’s first same-sex married couple in an episode last year—is currently in its second season and preparing for its third.
Viacom refused to discuss the specifics of the decision—and whether it was linked to accusations that surfaced against Savino on animation news site Cartoon Brew, which says at least a dozen women have come forward with stories of inappropriate behavior on his part. According to Variety, “Their accusations—which date back several years—include unwanted sexual advances as well as threats of retribution after the end of consensual relationships.” Cartoon Brew also confirmed with BoJack Horseman director Anne Walker Ferrell that a series of tweets she posted about a predatory figure in the animation world last year were in reference to Savino.
Here’s Viacom’s statement on the suspension:
Viacom is committed to the safety and well-being of our employees, and to fostering a workplace free from harassment. As a matter of policy, we do not comment on specific employee matters, but we take all allegations of this nature very seriously, investigate them thoroughly and take any necessary actions as a result.
Update: Here’s a full statement from a Nickelodeon spokesperson, confirming that Savino has been fired, and that the series will continue on without him:
Chris Savino is no longer working with Nickelodeon. We take allegations of misconduct very seriously, and we are committed to fostering a safe and professional workplace environment that is free of harassment or other kinds of inappropriate conduct.
The Loud House, which is currently in its second season, will continue to air on Nickelodeon and be in production. Season three is scheduled to premiere in early 2018.