A Roseanne spinoff is looking more and more likely, with insiders expecting an announcement from ABC as early as this week. ABC has been contemplating a potential spinoff centered around Darlene Conner (Sara Gilbert) ever since they canceled the hit Roseanne revival last month; a move made in response to a horrifically racist tweet that Roseanne Barr had written on her personal Twitter account.
Roseanne had already been renewed for a second season when the series was canceled, so that left ABC with an open primetime slot to fill. While some people were hoping ABC would revive Agent Carter, it seems they plan on moving forward with a Roseanne spinoff. Aside from Gilbert, the Roseanne executive producers are reportedly scrambling to find a way to bring back Dan (John Goodman), Jackie (Laurie Metcalf), and possibly the rest of the revival cast– minus Barr, of course.
THR reports that ABC may officially announce a Roseanne spinoff sometime this week, with showrunner Bruce Helford possibly returning at the helm, along with the entire crew from the previous season (including the writing staff). Right now, a bunch of ideas are allegedly being tossed around, with the most popular concept being a sitcom that focuses on Darlene. That makes sense, since Gilbert's character proved to be one of the most popular aspects of the recent revival.
The outlet also reports that ABC executives gathered for an impromptu brainstorm session on Friday in the hopes of figuring out how to keep Roseanne afloat in one way or another. Those conversations carried over into the weekend, with producer Tom Werner reportedly extremely intent on keeping the show alive. If this is true, then ABC will likely be making an announcement any day now.
A Roseanne spinoff chronicling the continued adventures of Darlene and co. could work, and it would allow the cast and crew of the now-canceled revival to keep their jobs, as well as fill the hole in ABC's schedule. The only major problem with the plan is that Roseanne Barr is still one of the show's creators and holds rights over the property. That means she still stands to profit off the show, even if she isn't a featured cast member in the spinoff. What's interesting is that Gilbert, Metcalf, and Goodman are still expected to be paid for the now-aborted 11th season either way, and will each be earning $300,000 per episode after renegotiating their contracts.
Despite promising to steer clear of social media, Barr has been compulsively tweeting left and right. She even accused former castmate Michael Fishman of throwing her "under the bus" after he called her behavior "reprehensible and intolerable." Barr also tried to blame the offending tweet on the fact that she was under the influence of the popular sleep medication Ambien. This prompted a spokesperson for the biopharmaceutical company Sonofi to respond, claiming that racism isn't one of the drug's side effects. If a Roseanne spinoff moves forward, regardless of what it ends up being about, it will still carry all of the bad press with it.