Paramount Television President Amy Powell has been fired following accusations that she launched into a racist harangue on a conference call:
The alleged incident occurred during a call to discuss “The First Wives Club,” a series adaptation of the 1996 Paramount film of the same name. The project’s showrunner is Tracy Oliver, who wrote the Universal Pictures hit “Girls Trip,” about a group of black friends reconnecting at Essence Fest in New Orleans. Her version of “The First Wives Club” is expected to feature a predominantly black cast.
During the call, Powell made offensive remarks stereotyping black people in a lengthy rant, the person familiar with the matter said. An assistant at the studio who heard the remarks reported the incident to an executive, who then went to human resources. At least four people heard the comments, the person familiar with the matter said.
Powell vehemently denies everything, but an awful lot of people seem to have heard her rant. This kind of thing is just bizarre. What on earth could prompt someone not just to do this, but to do it with a bunch of people listening, virtually all of whom are guaranteed to be unsympathetic to this kind of diatribe? It’s all but suicidal. I guess I’m pretty curious now to hear her side of the story.