10 Actors Who Were Removed From TV Shows In 2021

One annoyed the Chinese government, two refused the vaccine, two were accused of sexual assault...

Jeff Garlin The Goldbergs

Actors work on short-term contracts and they get fired all the time. The reasons are numerous: poor behaviour on set, stalled contract negotiations, legal issues, and lack of chemistry with co-stars, are just a few examples. But the reasons aren’t limited to that.

Charlie Sheen famously got canned and killed off Two And A Half Men after the drama with his personal life got too intense and embarrassing for CBS to bear. At the time, Sheen was the highest-paid actor on television, pulling in a million dollars per episode. Netflix also fired Kevin Spacey from its breakout show, House of Cards, in 2017, after the actor encountered a hail of sexual assault allegations.

2021 was no different, seeing a host of firings across several TV shows. As a result, the makeup of these programmes have had to change, with actors being edited out of upcoming episodes entirely, or simply recast with another performer.

The reasons behind firings in the last year have been quite varied: controversial tweets, boorish on-set behaviour, vaccine refusal, and annoying the Chinese government - but whatever the reason, each of the following actors have since said goodbye to these TV shows.

10. Zhao Wei - Removed From Everything

Jeff Garlin The Goldbergs
New Classics Media

"Cancel culture" may be blamed for everything in the West, but Zhao Wei’s case proves that extreme censorship is much more than deplatforming and negatively trending on Twitter. The billionaire Chinese actress wasn’t just blacklisted from the industry, she was scrubbed from the internet.

Zhao Wei, also known as Vicky Zhao, is one of the most popular actresses in China. Her first major role was in My Fair Princess, the most popular Chinese drama of all time. She made her film debut in the 2001 comedy Shaolin Soccer and has only grown popular ever since.

Then in August China’s entertainment regulator, the National Radio and Television Administration (NRTA), ordered all streaming sites in the country to remove everything with her face in it. Her TV shows like Chinese Restaurant and even My Fair Princess were removed from every streaming site in China. Every film or TV show she has starred in was pulled down. Even interviews were not spared. Her producing and directing credits were also expunged from all movie information sites. Any evidence of her entire career as an actress was purged from the Chinese internet. It's like she never existed.

The NRTA didn’t give any reason for blacklisting Zhao. The agency just ordered her entire filmography purged, and she has subsequently been recast for all upcoming projects.


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