Drew Barrymore PAUSES premier of her show after issuing teary-eyed apology for resuming talk show during writers strike
Drew Barrymore has sensationally paused the premier of her talk show until after the Hollywood writers strike ends after facing intense criticism for her actions.
The 48-year-old actress issued a groveling on-camera apology for continuing her CBS talk show ‘The Drew Barrymore Show’ while her three unionized writers were on strike – but she still refused to halt production.
Barrymore was planning to return to screens on September 18, with filming for the fourth season of her show taking place earlier this week. She was then called out for her actions and lack of solidarity with the Writers Guild Of America (WGA).
Announcing that she was going back on her decision after the backlash, she wrote on Instagram on Sunday: ‘I have listened to everyone, and I am making the decision to pause the show’s premiere until the strike is over.
‘I have no words to express my deepest apologies to anyone I have hurt and, of course, to our incredible team who works on the show and has made it what it is today.
Drew Barrymore apologized for resuming her talk show without her three unionized writers amid the ongoing writers strike
‘We really tried to find our way forward. And I truly hope for a resolution for the entire industry soon.’
The Instagram walk-back comes after she said in a video on Friday: ‘I wanted to own a decision, so that it wasn’t a PR-protected situation, and I would just take full responsibility for my actions.’
‘I believe there’s nothing I can do or say in this moment to make it OK,’ she said through tears.
‘I fully accept that. I fully understand that. There are so many reasons why this is so complex, and I just want everyone to know my intentions have never been in a place to upset or hurt anymore.
‘It’s not who I am. I’ve been through so many ups and downs in my life, and this is one of them. I deeply apologize to writers. I deeply apologize to unions.’
She added: ‘There’s a huge question of the why — why am I doing this?
‘Well, I certainly couldn’t have expected this kind of attention, and we aren’t going to break rules and we will be in compliance. I wanted to do this, because as I said, this is bigger than me and there are other people’s jobs on the line.’
Barrymore’s show operates with union writers, therefore non-WGA members would have been hired to write the new episodes’ scripts, which is considered crossing the picket line.
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers revealed on Thursday that it was working with the WGA to get back to the negotiating table to put an end to the strikes
Drew, on her knees, talking to trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney on The Drew Barrymore Show
The WGA hit out at her decision to bring back the show during the strike, saying: ‘Drew Barrymore should not be on the air while her writers are on strike fighting for a fair deal.
‘In reality, shows like this cannot operate without writing, and that is struck work.’
A spokesperson for the union maintained The Drew Barrymore Show is a struck show, and as a result union members picketed outside of her studios on Monday and Tuesday in New York City.
‘It has stayed off the air since the strike began on May 2nd but has now (unfortunately) decided to return without its writers,’ the spokesperson said in the statement.
‘The Guild has, and will continue to, picket any struck show that continues production for the duration of the strike.’
Actors who appear as guests when The Drew Barrymore returns for its fourth season will have to abide by the Screen Actors Guild American – Federation Of Television And Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) strike rules. This includes not discussing or promoting any struck work.
Cristina Kinon, one of the co-head writers for The Drew Barrymore Show who is on strike, spoke out about the issue.
She was diplomatic about the situation but argued that Barrymore could have done more to help television industry workers impacted by the strikes than simply restarting the show, and Kinon said returning to the air would only ‘prolong the strike.’
‘I personally understand that everybody has to make the best decision for themselves,’ Kinon said carefully.
‘I know that this show has a crew of hundreds of people who need to be paid, and I understand the perspective of wanting to protect your cast, your crew, and your staff.’