Amazon has confirmed that Jeffrey Tambor will not be returning to the cast of Transparent for the fifth season of the streaming comedy series, for which Tambor has won two Emmys playing a transgender parent.
The Golden Globe-winning series created by Jill Soloway was ordered for a fifth season last year before allegations of sexual harassment were made against Tambor by transgender actresses Van Barnes (also Tambor’s former assistant) and Trace Lysette.
Tambor, who admitted that he could be hard to work with but said he has never been a predator, made a statement last November suggesting he would not return to the show, the fourth season of which aired last autumn.
Tambor’s statement at the time said: “I’ve already made clear my deep regret if any action of mine was ever misinterpreted by anyone as being aggressive, but the idea that I would deliberately harass anyone is simply and utterly untrue. Given the politicized atmosphere that seems to have afflicted our set, I don’t see how I can return to Transparent.”
In response to confirmation that Tambor would not be back on the show, Soloway this week issued a statement saying: “I have great respect and admiration for Van Barnes and Trace Lysette, whose courage in speaking out about their experience on Transparent is an example of the leadership this moment in our culture requires. We are grateful to the many trans people who have supported our vision for Transparent since its inception and remain heartbroken about the pain and mistrust their experience has generated in our community.”
Soloway added: “We are taking definitive action to ensure our workplace respects the safety and dignity of every individual, and are taking steps to heal as a family.”
Amazon did not comment on the future of the series beyond Season Five.
In a new statement released after the news was confirmed, Tambor said: “I am profoundly disappointed in Amazon’s handling of these false accusations against me. I am even more disappointed in Jill Soloway’s unfair characterisation of me as someone who would ever cause harm to any of my fellow cast mates.
“In our four-year history of working together on this incredible show,” Tambor’s statement continued, “these accusations have NEVER been revealed or discussed directly with me or anyone at Amazon. Therefore, I can only surmise that the investigation against me was deeply flawed and biased toward the toxic politicised atmosphere that afflicted our set. As I have consistently stated, I deeply regret if any action of mine was ever misinterpreted by anyone and I will continue to vehemently defend myself. I also deeply regret that this ground-breaking show, which changed so many lives, is now in jeopardy. That, to me, is the biggest heartbreak.”