Duck Dynasty Returning With Phil Robertson in 2014; Suspension Lifted By A&E

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Despite much controversy over the past two weeks, Duck Dynasty will return on schedule next year, with Phil Robertson an active participant, A&E announced.

The company suspended Robertson indefinitely December 18 following controversial anti-gay comments the 67-year-old made in an interview with GQ.

Duck Dynasty had been on hiatus when the comments went public; the show is set to return in January and to resume filming new episodes this spring.

None of that will change. The network, “after discussions with the Robertson family, as well as consulting with numerous advocacy groups,” says the show will go on.

The Robertson Family

The Robertson family admitted that the anti-gay comments were coarse, but criticized the suspension and implied they would not film without Phil.

Since the national controversy erupted, Phil Robertson has been defiant, reiterating his stance on gays, sin and homosexuality at a Bible study group.

He has been roundly criticized by gay rights groups, but supporters began demanding his reinstatement and even planning a Chick-Phil-A Day.

The network thus found itself in the midst of a PR nightmare, and ultimately decided to distance itself from Phil's views while still bringing back the show.

A&E's statement on the decision, released Friday, reads:

As a global media content company, A&E Networks’ core values are centered around creativity, inclusion and mutual respect. We believe it is a privilege for our brands to be invited into people’s home and we operate with a strong sense of integrity and deep commitment to these principals.

That is why we reacted so quickly and strongly to a recent interview with Phil Robertson. While Phil’s comments made in the interview reflect his personal views based on his own beliefs, and his own personal journey, he and his family have publicly stated they regret the “coarse language” he used and the misinterpretation of his core beliefs based only on the article. He also made it clear he would “never incite or encourage hate.” We at A&E Networks expressed our disappointment with his statements in the article, and reiterate that they are not views we hold.

But Duck Dynasty is not a show about one man’s views. It resonates with a large audience because it is a show about family… a family that America has come to love. As you might have seen in many episodes, they come together to reflect and pray for unity, tolerance and forgiveness. These are three values that we at A&E Networks also feel strongly about.

So after discussions with the Robertson family, as well as consulting with numerous advocacy groups, A&E has decided to resume filming Duck Dynasty later this spring with the entire Robertson family.

We will also use this moment to launch a national public service campaign (PSA) promoting unity, tolerance and acceptance among all people, a message that supports our core values as a company, and the values found in Duck Dynasty. These PSAs will air across our entire portfolio.

And that's that. While there may be backlash and protests as a result of its decision, A&E was going to get that regardless, and is standing by its cash cow.

Do you think their statement and justification goes far enough? Or did Robertson deserve more than a wrist slap? Comment and vote in our survey below:

A&E lifting Robertson's suspension: Right or wrong?

 

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A bunch of hillbillies that made it rich! Wow! Didn't we already have a program on about this???? Oh yeah,,,,Jed and Jethro and who can forget Ellie May that must of been Phil"s 14 year old wife! OMG ,,,I'm getting both the show's mixed up! They both suck! Good luck u rich hicks!!!

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I don't really know what Duck Dynasty is, but I did look at a picture of th show. It had two men and a really nasty background that was supposed to look like a dirty neighborhood, I'm guessing. Anyway, it's all over Tumblr because of its comedy, I think. That's just what I hear. You can never know what's happening with TV and entertainment these days until you see it.
But, I'll see what's going on here.
So, Duck Dynasty is going to be renewed and I think they put that out because the fans were thinking it might have been canceled or something, so people just wanted to get it out there that the show is still going on, they just have to wait for it. Um, and so they put it on a popular website so some people would see it and then they'd tell other people and the cycle would keep going on until there is no news to share, which while humans are still on Earth will not happen, I'm pretty sure. Almost everyone is notified that their show is going on until it is finally canceled.
Glad I cleared everything up if there were any confusions or misunderstandings. I'm sure the article was fully translated into a simple, but focused way of speaking.

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I've never married and am not a virgin. According to the Bible I'm a sinner :-) I don't blame Phil, he didn't write the book he just believes. Since when did having an opinion in this country warrant censorship??? I have gay people in my family that I Love. I am no better or worse than them in Gods eyes. Watching the Robertson family reminds me of my own. My Grandma says insensitive stuff all the time, doesn't make it a lie. :-) She tells me what she thinks I need to hear, not what I want. She has that right, and she sees it as a responsibility in an attempt to do Good. People protest the funerals of Vets and They have that right too. Our country grants the freedom to say what you want as part of our Constitution. If you don't want to hear Phils opinion, don't read the article and don't watch the show. Pretty simple fix A&E! All this drama was your creation! The Execs at that network need the Ax! Simply say Phil had the right to feel how he feels, The Network doesn't agree, can we now Please get over it already.

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controversy = ratings in Network Land and ratings = money...duh?

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I forgot to tell you, I just got my corn rows tightened this weekend for the low price of $9.99 at jetcurls.com.Next week im planning to go to Brooklyn to eat a National Hebrew ballpark frank.

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@ debra_cwilliams

Oh great - thanks for letting us know. My year has been made so much more meaningful with this knowledge.

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Yeah right. When they suspended him, he said it was more important to be himself than have the money. He said in the GQ interview that he was a preacher and getting the gospel message out was more important than a paycheck. He said he ad enough money. Now, what does he do? Come back for a bigger paycheck. What a fraud!

Debra cwilliams

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I am sick of hearing about Phil He is not god yes he has the right to speak but not when he could have some gays and sinners their life what if the world was the other way around .just think about that now if you really want to something that God would be proud of .Their is a 12 year old little girl that could use your help Alexis needs a operation to save her life her mother and father cant afford it and ins want pay for the operation Just go to NBC Heath News and do something really good really And I hope u are giving 10 percent of all that money you make to God But I love u

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Im just glad Phil will be back, he is a part of the family. The actual inventor of this duck call and an American. And Free speech is part of that I thought. I think A&E need to realize, if you are going to air reality shows that the charactors opinions will be spoken. You can not

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Phil Robertson is very intelligent and has a masters degree. People are just jeolous because Duck Dynasty has the number 1 show with most viewers and four times more viewers than the Kardashians. These people were rich and legends in their area before the TV show. They are good people with fine restaurants they run and big hearts who employ much of their town for their Duck Commander and Duck call factories. People need to quit bitching about a good man that they are just jeolous of.

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@ Barbara Goodsons

nobody is jealous of him - he is a bigot - plain and simple and the lemming eat it up.

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