Superstar Julianne Hough apologized for “wearing blackface” in 2013 for a Halloween costume and her new show “The Activist” on CBS has been pulled for now.
“Wearing blackface was a poor choice based on my own white privilege and my own white body bias that hurt people and is something I regret doing to this day,” the 33-year-old actress captioned her post on Instagram. The post was noted by the New York Post in a piece published Wednesday.
“However, the regret that I live with pales in comparison to the lived experiences of so many,” she added. “My commitment has been to reflect and act differently. Not perfectly, but hopefully with a more developed understanding that racism and white supremacy is harmful to ALL people. I am still listening because this is a messy and uncomfortable conversation, and I’m committed to being here for all of it.”
The “Footloose” star also addressed some of the criticism that’s been leveled against her new reality series called “The Activist” which she said included that it “promoted pseudo-activism over real activism” and “felt tone-deaf.”
She also shared statements that claimed Hough and other hosts, Priyanka Chopra and Usher, “weren’t qualified to assess activism” because they weren’t activists but celebrities.
“And because of this, there is a feeling of insult, dehumanization, insensitivity and hurt that is being rightfully felt,” the actress wrote. “I do not claim to be an activist and wholeheartedly agree that the judging aspect of the show missed the mark and furthermore, that I am not qualified to act as a judge.”
Following criticism of the show’s concept, the network released a statement along with production partners Global Citizen and Live Nation, to CNN.
“The Activist was designed to show a wide audience the passion, long hours, and ingenuity that activists put into changing the world, hopefully inspiring others to do the same,” the statement read. “However, it has become apparent the format of the show as announced distracts from the vital work these incredible activists do in their communities every day.”
“The push for global change is not a competition and requires a global effort,” it added. “As a result, we are changing the format to remove the competitive element and reimagining the concept into a primetime documentary special (air date to be announced).”
The new reality series “will showcase the tireless work of six activists and the impact they have advocating for causes they deeply believe in,” and “each activist will be awarded a cash grant for the organization of their choice, as was planned for the original show,” the CBS’s statement shared.
There has been no further information released about the timing of the revamped show.