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‘Rick and Morty’ cuts ties with Justin Roiland after domestic violence charges

A man with facial hair and glasses smiled in front of a dark blue background
Adult Swim said it has severed ties with “Rick and Morty” co-creator Justin Roiland.
(Chris Pizzello / Invision / Associated Press)
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Adult Swim, which airs the adult comedy “Rick and Morty,” announced on Tuesday that it will no longer work with series co-creator Justin Roiland. The news comes less than two weeks after he was charged with domestic violence in Orange County.

“Adult Swim has ended its association with Justin Roiland,” said a statement posted on social media and the official “Rick and Morty” accounts. “Rick and Morty will continue.”

Roiland, who also co-created and stars in Hulu’s “Solar Opposites,” appeared in court on Jan. 12 for a pretrial hearing related to charges filed in May 2020.

According to the complaint obtained by The Times, Roiland is facing one count of domestic battery with corporal injury and one count of false imprisonment by menace, violence, fraud and deceit.

The complaint says the charges are related to an alleged incident that occurred on or about Jan. 19, 2020, involving an unnamed Jane Doe who was dating Roiland at that time. Orange County Superior Court records indicate Roiland pleaded not guilty to both felony counts when he was arraigned in October 2020.

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According to these court records, Roiland had been released after posting a $50,000 bond that August.

‘Rick and Morty’ co-creator Justin Roiland is facing two felony counts of domestic violence in Orange County. The charges were filed in May 2020.

Jan. 12, 2023

Roiland’s attorney denied the charges, saying in a statement to The Times on Jan. 12 that his client is “innocent” and they expect “that this matter is on course to be dismissed once the District Attorney’s office has completed its methodical review of the evidence.”

The writer-actor’s legal representative did not immediately respond to The Times’ request for comment Tuesday.

The court will reconvene for Roiland’s pretrial hearing on April 27.

A screen grab of the cartoon show "Rick and Morty"
Justin Roiland voiced the titular characters of Adult Swim’s “Rick and Morty.”
(Adult Swim / Turner)

For six seasons, Roiland voiced the titular characters of “Rick and Morty,” mad scientist Rick Sanchez and his grandson Morty Smith. The roles will most likely be recast, as a representative for Adult Swim told The Times Tuesday that “the show will continue without [Roiland’s] involvement.”

“Rick and Morty” was renewed through Season 10 as part of Adult Swim’s 70-episode pick-up in 2018. Roiland and Dan Harmon co-created the Emmy Award-winning series, which debuted in 2013.

In Tuesday’s announcement, Adult Swim added that “the talented and dedicated crew are hard at work on Season 7.”

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Times staff writer Tracy Brown contributed to this report.

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