Chris Hardwick's AMC Talk Show Pulled and Appearances Canceled Amid Sexual Assault Allegations
AMC won't be airing Talking with Chris Hardwick after Hardwick's ex-girlfriend Chloe Dykstra accused the comedian of sexual assault
One day after Chris Hardwick’s ex-girlfriend Chloe Dykstra made sexual assault allegations, AMC has announced they will no longer be airing his talk show while “while we assess the situation.”
On Saturday, the network released a statement obtained by PEOPLE, explaining that they will have pulled Talking with Chris Hardwick — which was set to return on Sunday — from their schedule. Additionally, Hardwick will no longer moderate two upcoming panels at San Diego’s Comic-Con in July.
“We have had a positive working relationship with Chris Hardwick for many years,” the network said in a statement. “We take the troubling allegations that surfaced yesterday very seriously. While we assess the situation, Talking with Chris Hardwick will not air on AMC, and Chris has decided to step aside from moderating planned AMC and BBC America panels at Comic-Con International in San Diego next month.”
Hardwick has also been removed from his upcoming appearance at KAABOO Del Mar 2018, the annual festival said on Saturday.
“We have made the decision to pull Chris Hardwick from the KAABOO Del Mar 2018 comedy lineup following detailed accusations of substantial abuse,” a statement on their website reads. “KAABOO is an experience dedicated to providing a safe community and fostering an inclusive environment for all of our guests, performing artists and comedians, chefs, visual artists and team members. KAABOO does not condone, and will not tolerate, any type of abusive behavior or harassment. A replacement act for Hardwick will be announced shortly.”
Dykstra, 29, wrote about her painful experience with sexual assault in an emotional first-person essay on Friday.
Although she never named her former boyfriend, certain key details led many fans on Twitter to believe that she was referring to ex-boyfriend Hardwick. The two announced their split in July 2014 via Twitter. Hardwick married heiress and actress Lydia Hearst in 2016.
In the essay, Dykstra said when she was in her early 20s, she began dating a man almost 20 years her senior who began displaying “controlling behavior,” and “rules were quickly established” within two weeks.
According to Dykstra, her nights “were expected to be reserved for him, as he had a busy schedule,” which alienated her from her friends. Dykstra also said she was not to have close male friends and was not to drink alcohol, as he was sober. (Hardwick stopped drinking in 2003.)
“Terrified to piss him off,” Dykstra said she “did what he said. Including let him sexually assault me. Regularly.”
“I was expected to be ready for him when he came home from work,” she said. “Every night, I laid there for him, occasionally in tears. He called it ‘starfishing.’ He thought the whole idea was funny.”
After three years “of being snapped/yelled at constantly,” Dykstra said she finally left him. She said she’s “still recovering from being sexually used (not in a super fun way) for three years” and considered suicide “many times” over the years. Though she managed to “rebuild” her life, she said she “never received closure for the long-lasting trauma, physical and emotional.”
Hardwick, 46, released a statement obtained by PEOPLE, saying he made sure to take time to respond to the “very serious allegations.”
“I was heartbroken to read Chloe’s post. Our three year relationship was not perfect — we were ultimately not a good match and argued — even shouted at each other — but I loved her and did my best to uplift and support her as a partner and companion in any way and at no time did I sexually assault her,” Hardwick said.
He continued by describing their relationship at the time and claiming the actress had been unfaithful to him when they were a couple.
“When we were living together, I found out that Chloe had cheated on me, and I ended the relationship,” Hardwick said. “For several weeks after we broke up, she asked to get back together with me and even told me she wanted to have kids with me, ‘build a life’ with me and told me that I was ‘the one,’ but I did not want to be with someone who was unfaithful.”
“I’m devastated to read that she is now accusing me of conduct that did not occur,” Hardwick added. “I was blindsided by her post and always wanted the best for her. As a husband, a son, and future father, I do not condone any kind of mistreatment of women.”
Discussing the statement, a source familiar with the situation tells PEOPLE that Hardwick’s wife Hearst is not currently pregnant but that “children are definitely in their future plans.”