MTV has pulled the plug on the controversial reality show “Buckwild” following the death of Shain Gandee, one of its stars. The network confirmed plans this morning to cancel the show.
The network also announced plans to televise a special this Sunday at 8 p.m. ET/PT as a tribute to Gandee.
The Hollywood Reporter says producer J.P. Williams was less than thrilled with MTV’s decision to end the series. “Williams, who manages most of the cast members and produces the show, took particular aim at MTV for pulling the plug midway through filming on the second season,” the piece reports.
Williams is quoted as saying: "This is the network that has shows about teen pregnancy. They’ll stick by a show that allows you to abandon a child, but a kid dies by accident doing what he does for a living [mudding] and they cancel the show? There’s something that smells of s— here on every level."
“News of the show’s cancellation comes a week or so after Gandee, 21, was found dead April 1 in his vehicle, along with his uncle and a friend, after going off-roading, or ‘mudding,’ on a remote road in West Virginia,” the story reports. “The local sheriff’s office ruled the death was caused by carbon monoxide poisoning. The network had suspended production as it considered whether to continue with the hit series, which was intended to fill a void left by onetime juggernaut ‘Jersey Shore.’”
Williams said producers were told Friday that MTV planned to go ahead with the series. “At that time, the network had four episodes in the can and was planning to shoot four more plus a special dedicated to Gandee to kick off the season,” THR reports. “But Williams says MTV brass followed up Tuesday with a different message for the show’s producers: The network had opted to cancel the series instead.”
Said Williams: “There was no explanation.”
“He adds that the cast, which had planned to come to Los Angeles for the MTV Movie Awards this weekend, had not been informed of the news,” the story reports.
“Williams, who manages eight of the show’s cast members, including Gandee, does not intend to move on to other projects,” THR reports. “In fact, he suggests that he will continue shooting the series and will look to produce a ‘Buckwild’ film, which he would self-finance if need be. ‘My job is to protect these kids,’ he tells THR, adding: ‘This will get ugly.’”