First it was Hallmark Channel cutting Lori Loughlin loose earlier today after her indicted involvement in the elite college admissions fraud scheme. Now it seems inevitable that Netflix will not be inviting the actor known around the world as Aunt Becky back for the fifth and final season of Fuller House.
“She’s toast, it’s over,” said one well positioned source of Loughlin’s Tanner residence future.
While no official final decision has been made by the streamer or distributor Warner Horizon Television on still UTA-repped Loughlin’s Fuller House fate, I’m told the writing is pretty clearly on the wall. A final judgement could come as soon as the next day or so.
The timing wouldn’t be surprising considering the pace of events since the FBI and the U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts revealed on March 12 the 50 people indicted for the $25 million scam to fast track kids of the wealthy to top schools with fake athletic credentials or phony SAT scores
In fact, writing is at the core of the solution for Netflix and WB’s production arm when it comes to the Jeff Franklin created show and the scandal drenched Loughlin.
Though a final season of the sequel to the ABC sitcom that ran from 1987 to 1995 was announced at the end of January, a month after Season 4 launched, nothing much has actually happened since. A writer’s room is still in the stages of coming together to pen the last pop culture infused 18 episodes of the Candace Cameron Bure, Andrea Barber and Jodie Sweetin-led series.
Similar to previous cycles, Season 5 of Fuller House looks set to premiere in the last weeks of this year.
All of which means losing the recurring guest role can occur with a line or two of yet to be written dialogue about how Rebecca Donaldson-Katsopolis had to leave San Francisco suddenly. That’s certainly a far cry from the deep re-edits or other “creative solutions” that Hallmark producers are trying to come up with for their series that Loughlin starred on.
As they have since the scandal broke on Tuesday, Netflix today had no comment on Loughlin and Fuller House. Warner Horizon TV also had no comment on the matter.
Arrested and arraigned Wednesday in federal court in Los Angeles on conspiracy charges stemming from the nationwide investigation made public the day before by federal investigators, Loughlin is currently out on a $1 million bail bond. Restricted to travel within the continental U.S. and Vancouver for work – though the latter seems irrelevant now that Hallmark-owning Crown Media Family Networks said Thursday that “we are no longer working with” the actor whatsoever.
The long running Loughlin starring Garage Sale Mysteries TV movie franchise has been immediately canceled by Hallmark as of today. At the same time, producers for the top rated and definitely not canceled When Calls The Heart are exploring a variety of options to continue without Loughlin’s Abigail Station character for the rest of the just debuted sixth season and beyond.
As part of a year-long investigation that charged American Crime star Felicity Huffman and 30 other parents, Loughlin and her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli were caught trying to juice the system. The couple are accused of paying “bribes totaling $500,000 in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team — despite the fact that they did not participate in crew — thereby facilitating their admission to USC,” according to the 200-page indictment.
Like what went down in her husband’s arraignment on March 12 Loughlin is set to appear in court next on March 29 for a preliminary hearing in Boston. On the other hand, while the charges carry a sentence of potentially five years behind bars, no one expects it likely that Huffman, Loughlin or many of the white collar others will spend anywhere near that time in jail, if at all.