PBS Series Drops Fred Willard After His Arrest on Suspicion of Engaging in a Lewd Act

PBS has dropped Fred Willard from the show Market Warriors following his arrest on Wednesday evening on suspicion of committing a lewd act in public.

“Given the unfortunate news reported today, effective immediately Fred Willard will no longer be involved with the Market Warriors series,” the president of PBS station WGBH, which produces the program, said in a statement to ABC News. “It’s something we felt was important to decide, and given the trust of our audiences, we wanted to move forward.”

Antiques Roadshow host Mark Walberg will take on voice duties for Willard’s episodes.

Meanwhile, though ABC has yet to officially comment on its plans for unaired, pre-taped episodes of its Willard-hosted summer series Trust Us With Your Life, it is believed they will air as planned.

Willard, best known for his work in the Christopher Guest films but also a recent guest star on TV series including The Closer and Modern Family, was picked up by police at a Hollywood adult theater for performing what the LAPD described as a lewd act. The actor’s lawyer countered in a statement, “[O]ur belief is that Fred did nothing in any violation of any law. We will be working vigorously to clear his name in this matter.”

Willard has yet to be convicted of an offense.

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18 Comments
  1. Andrew says:

    WHO CARES!

  2. malarson2 says:

    When I first read about this arrest earlier today, my initial thought was that it would just add to his funny/quirky/deadpan persona. I mean…he IS 72, after all, and the thought of him having a moment with himself in adult theater didn’t sound too dramatic. But now, reading this, I’m wondering if there is more to the story. PBS can be a little stuffy, obviously, but immediately yanking him from their program seems to me to be a sign of more trouble to come from this arrest. Just stay home and ‘have your moments’, people! :)

  3. Britta Unfiltered says:

    Hey Fred Willard, there’s this thing called the internet….I’ve heard it has porn….

  4. Preston says:

    “you broke our hearts Fredo-you broke our hearts”

  5. Kasper F. Nielsen says:

    Haha this is hilarious. What else would you be doing in a porn theater other than choking the chicken? Seems like a bizarre thing to get arrested for doing.

  6. Stu says:

    Wacky-tacky!

  7. Cindy says:

    Leave the old guy alone.

  8. aunt_deen says:

    I’d like to know who in that establishment he was offending.

  9. Lyndee says:

    Pee Wee Herman all over again.

  10. I was completely surprised pron theaters still even exist lol. You can get all the porn you want right off the internet lol

  11. scifisiren says:

    This incident has been way overblown.

  12. Mikael says:

    I find it hilarious that you’re not supposed to do that in a porn theater. So you’re just supposed to watch the movie and enjoy the “acting” and deep storyline? What else you would do while watching that?

  13. Templar says:

    OK, this is ONLY my thoughts on the subject. Fred has been in the business too long not to be aware of the many sources for porn in his own home [Internet, DVD etc.] The fact that he elected to do this in a theater indicates either a seriously diminished capacity for good judgement, or a reckless thrill seeker mentality. In either case, PBS was right to dismiss him.

  14. Edward says:

    While trying not yo be too graphic… There seems to be a lot of assumption as to what the “lewd act” was here in the comments. There are other lewd acts, involving other people, that have traditionally and often been performed by patrons of adult theaters. And those acts you cannot do by yourself while surfing the internet.

  15. NP says:

    How can you fire someone for being accused of something?? ‘Innocent until proven guilty,’ remember.

    I hope either the charges are dropped or he’s found not guilty and then he gets some justice.

    • Lacy says:

      The network pays his salary, that’s how. We’re not talking an office job he was fired from. I would assume the network is smart enough to include in their airtight contracts the ability to let someone go for any reason they want.
      I find it hilarious, but have no pity. Fred has enough money and success that I doubt he will hurt financially over this too much.

  16. Chaim Paddaman says:

    The arresting law enforcement officer’s formal written statement of the incident and Willard’s mastrubation attempt reads as follows; ” Courage and perseverance have a magical talisman, before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish into thin air. Sadly, the outcome did not have the desired effect that he had hoped for. The poor old bugger had no clue whether he was coming or going. It was the ultimate tear jerker.” Bizarre sexual orientation disturbances such as paraphilia, necrophilia, pedophilia are common in the Hollywood celebrity culture. What is the big deal here? Hoping to see Fred Willard and his former Roseanne co star “Big Bang Theory’s Johnny Galecki at the next Obama fundraising dinner.

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