In June, Talking Dead host Chris Hardwick was accused of sexual assault and emotional abuse in an essay by actress Chloe Dykstra. Hardwick quickly denied the allegations, and now AMC has decided the host will return to his position next month.
“Following a comprehensive assessment by AMC, working with Ivy Kagan Bierman of the firm Loeb & Loeb, who has considerable experience in this area, Chris Hardwick will return to AMC as the host of Talking Dead and Talking with Chris Hardwick,” the network said in a statement, according to Deadline. “We take these matters very seriously and given the information available to us after a very careful review, including interviews with numerous individuals, we believe returning Chris to work is the appropriate step.”
Hardwick will reappear on the show Talking Dead on Aug. 12, after the season 4 mid-season debut of Fear the Walking Dead.
After Dykstra's piece went up, Nerdist distanced itself from Hardwick, who founded the site, and claimed he does not have creative control or operational involvement. AMC also distanced itself from the podcaster, pulling the season 2 June 17 premiere of Talking With Chris Hardwick, and removing him from Talking Dead for the near future.
Hardwick released a long denial to Dykstra’s accusation, writing, "I was heartbroken to read Chloe’s post. Our three-year relationship was not perfect—we were ultimately not a good match and argued—even shouted at each other—but I loved her, and did my best to uplift and support her as a partner and companion in any way and at no time did I sexually assault her."
Dykstra has warned that she has proof of his alleged abuse. "I have audio/video that will support and prove many of the things I’ve stated in this post," Dykstra said at the end of her piece. "I’ve chosen not to include it for your sake, in the hopes that the person you’ve become will do the right thing."