As women continue to come forward with rape allegations against veteran comedian Bill Cosby, a planned comedy special on Netflix that was to feature Cosby has been shelved, Deadline.com reports.
As previously reported, model and former “America’s Next Top Model” judge Janice Dickinson is the latest to accuse Cosby of sexual assault. She alleges that in 1982 Cosby gave her a glass of red wine and a pill, which caused her to pass out. “The next morning I woke up, and I wasn’t wearing my pajamas, and I remember before I passed out that I had been sexually assaulted by this man,” she said.
Netflix’s decision is an about-face after the streaming service said Saturday that it would continue with the special as planned despite the controversy. In a statement issued Tuesday night, Netflix said: “At this time we are postponing the launch of the new stand-up comedy special ‘Bill Cosby 77.’” The special had been scheduled for the day after Thanksgiving.
“The scandal since has grown, with more testimonies by alleged victims and calls for Netflix and NBC, which has a comedy series with Cosby in the works, to distance themselves from the comedian,” Deadline notes.
Because of the allegations, which now number half a dozen accusations, the Netflix special was seen as insensitive, the story adds. The special was planned as a celebration of Cosby’s 77th birthday.
Netflix’s decision adds to the pressure on NBC, which is working on a family sitcom starring Cosby, Deadline adds. “In light of the slew of disturbing accusations, it would be hard for viewers to accept Cosby as a lovable family man and for NBC to sell the project to advertisers,” the article notes.