Andy Samberg says discussions are ongoing between the cast and crew of NBC‘s Brooklyn Nine-Nine about how they should proceed with the show after the death of George Floyd in Minnesota, anger at continuing police brutality, and global Black Lives Matter protests.
Samberg, who has played Detective Jake Peralta on the cop sitcom for seven seasons, admits that moving forward with Brooklyn Nine-Nine following the events of 2020 will be “a challenge”.
“We’re taking a step back, and the writers are all rethinking how we’re going to move forward, as well as the cast,” he told People. “We’re all in touch and kind of discussing how you make a comedy show about police right now, and if we can find a way of doing that that we all feel morally okay about.”
He added “I know that we’ll figure it out, but it’s definitely a challenge, so we’ll see how it goes.”
Samberg’s comments echo those of his Brooklyn Nine-Nine co-star Terry Crews, who first revealed that the show was being retooled during an interview last month.
“We’ve had a lot of somber talks about it and deep conversations and we hope through this we’re going to make something that will be truly groundbreaking this year. We have an opportunity and we plan to use it in the best way possible,” Crews told Access Daily. “Our show-runner Dan Goor, they had four episodes all ready to go and they just threw them in the trash. We have to start over. Right now we don’t know which direction it’s going to go in.”
“This is an opportunity right now for us all to unite and get together and understand what this is and that we have to battle this together.”
Showrunner Goor also confirmed that he and the cast had made a $100,000 donation to the National Bail Fund Network in early June following the death of George Floyd during his arrest. The horrifying incident was filmed via several cameras and the footage spread widely, triggering massive protests around the world against police brutality, racism, and lack of accountability.
“The cast and showrunner of Brooklyn 99 condemn the murder of George Floyd and support the many people who are protesting police brutality nationwide. Together we have made a $100,000 donation to the National Bail Fund Network. We encourage you to look up your local bail fund: the National Bail Fund Network is an organization that can lead you to them. #blacklivesmatter.”
Though the reevaluation of Brooklyn Nine-Nine‘s direction may prove to be tricky for the team behind the series, other networks are taking quick and decisive action to avoid future backlash. Paramount Network canceled its reality series Cops after 32 seasons on the air – the show had long been criticized for glorifying aggressive police behavior – and A&E also nixed Live PD after a four-season run.