Orlando Jones Explains Why He Spoke Out Now About 'American Gods' Firing

Meredith Jacobs
Starz

Orlando Jones won't be returning for American Gods Season 3, and the actor is now explaining why he was the one to share the news with his fans months after he was fired from the Starz series.

"On September 10, 2019, I was fired from American Gods," the actor revealed in a video he posted on Twitter Saturday.

"I assumed at some point, somebody would say that I wasn't going to be in Season 3," he told Variety. However, since that didn't happen, he felt he owed it to the fans to let them know what to expect. "I was getting hundreds of messages from fans on each one of those [social media] platforms," he explained. "I just sat and cried because I knew that I wasn't going to be there."

Since he didn't expect an announcement to be coming at all, he didn't want viewers to be angry once they tuned into the third season. "I didn't want to be in a scenario where somebody paid their hard earned dollars for Season 3 of American Gods just to find out I wasn't going to be there," he continued. "So I just repeated what they had said. All I can say is what I was told. And all what I was told was, 'angry gets s**t done' is the wrong message for black America, and that the new showrunner [Chic Elgee] writes from a black male perspective." He also stated that in his video on Twitter.

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Jones claims the Starz series axed him because his character Mr. Nancy sends 'the wrong message for black America.'

Jones explained he not only thought he'd be back to star in Season 3, but he also thought he'd be writing, as he'd done in Season 2, as well. "When I showed up to work in Season 2, they hadn't written at all for Mr. Nancy," he revealed, adding that he was "in the writing chair for all of the disenfranchised characters."

He also thought he'd be returning for Season 3 since producer Fremantle and Starz had been working with his manager on his deal. He was even enlisted to promote the show with appearances such as a panel at Salt Lake City Comic-Con with Ricky Whittle prior to Starz telling him he wouldn't be back.

"Jones' option was not picked up because Mr. Nancy, among other characters, is not featured in the portion of the book we are focusing on within Season 3," Fremantle said in a statement.

The actor also noted that this decision "took [him] out of all this other work that [he] could do," as he hadn't been told until September that they wouldn't be bringing him back. And he hopes that in calling attention to this, he can teach others facing similar experiences.

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This news comes soon after Gabrielle Union spoke about her exit and bad experience at America's Got Talent, also produced by Fremantle.

"I was fired ... like @itsgabrielleu @OfficialMelB @NickCannon @heidiklum all have said @FremantleUS is a nightmare," Jones tweeted. "They treated you like a 2nd class citizen for doing your job to well."

Union retweeted his message, adding, "Ohhhhhhhhhhh let's chat my friend."

American Gods, Season 3, Starz