Network chiefs behind reality show DUCK DYNASTY have decided to reinstate family patriarch PHIL ROBERTSON, days after he was suspended for making controversial remarks about homosexuality in a magazine article.
Robertson, who helps to run a multi-million dollar family duck hunting business, hit headlines last week (ends20Dec13) after he was asked by a GQ reporter to describe sin, to which he replied, "Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there."
The 67 year old's words landed him in trouble with gay rights activists and supporters, including actor Charlie Sheen, who lambasted the reality star for his "unforgivable" comments.
However, a number of fans also rallied in Robertson's defense and called for him to be allowed back on Duck Dynasty, and now A&E TV bosses have agreed to lift the ban.
A statement released on Friday (27Dec13) reads, "While Phil's comments made in the interview reflect his personal views based on his own beliefs, and his own personal journey, he and his family have publicly stated they regret the 'coarse language' he used and the mis-interpretation of his core beliefs based only on the article. He also made it clear he would 'never incite or encourage hate.'
"We at A+E Networks expressed our disappointment with his statements in the article, and reiterate that they are not views we hold.
"But Duck Dynasty is not a show about one man's views. It resonates with a large audience because it is a show about family... a family that America has come to love. As you might have seen in many episodes, they come together to reflect and pray for unity, tolerance and forgiveness. These are three values that we at A+E Networks also feel strongly about.
"So after discussions with the Robertson family, as well as consulting with numerous advocacy groups, A&E has decided to resume filming Duck Dynasty later this spring with the entire Robertson family."