During a table read for the pilot of the "Army Wives" spinoff, producer Mark Gordon used the word "nigger’ twice, prompting Lifetime to notify ABC Studios that the situation needed to be dealt with, reports Nikki Finke of Deadline.com.
Gordon, who also executive produces "Grey’s Anatomy" and "Private Practice" with African-American showrunner Shonda Rhimes, said in a statement, "I feel terrible about this. It was a stupid lapse in judgment. I didn’t meant [sic] to offend anyone, and I’ve apologized to everyone involved.”
During the table read, there was a scene involving one character putting a gun to another’s head. Acting out what he said was a scene from the film "Blazing Saddles," Gordon claims he put himself in a headlock (a witness said he grabbed the person next to him) and said, "I’m going to kill you nigger … nigger," the story says.
Gordon, who is white, acted out the scene in front of a cast and crew that includes two African-American actors, Gabrielle Union and "Army Wives" series regular Wendy Davis, the story says. (To see the "Blazing Saddles" scene, click here.)
Gordon was reported to Lifetime’s Human Resources, which then reported him to ABC Studios. ABC says the episode was "dealt with appropriately," according to the the story.