Skip to Content

Former Desperate Housewives star Neal McDonough was fired from the new ABC series Scoundrels earlier this week for refusing to film sex scenes with co-star Virginia Madsen.

McDonough, a strict Catholic who is married with three children, is known for refusing sex scenes on Desperate Housewives, where he played the deranged husband of Nicolette Sheridan‘s character, Edie.

“It has cost him jobs, but the man is sticking to his principles,” a source tells Deadline Hollywood.

Three days into shooting Scoundrels, McDonough was replaced with JAG star David James Elliott. ABC explained the move as simply a casting change.

Although McDonough has always made it clear he won’t do intimate scenes, a show insider says it wasn’t just “heated love scenes” the actor refused. “He wouldn’t do any kissing whatsoever, even though those scenes were clearly in the scripts he read before taking the role. He didn’t tell the producers that cast him on this show that he had any issues with this until shooting started. So unprofessional, and such a shame because he is a great talent.”

A rep for McDonough refused to comment.

photo: Fayes Vision/