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John Goodman defends Roseanne Barr: 'I know for a fact she's not a racist'

The actor revealed in a new interview that he was "surprised" ABC canceled the top-rated "Roseanne" revival after Barr tweeted a racist remark.
/ Source: TODAY

John Goodman is opening up about the depression he suffered after the cancellation of "Roseanne" — and he's defending his TV wife, Roseanne Barr, against allegations of racism.

The 66-year-old actor got candid in a new interview with the Sunday Times, revealing how devastated he was after the hit "Roseanne" revival was axed in May because of a racist tweet Barr shared.

John Goodman says his TV wife Roseanne Barr has been "going through hell" since the "Roseanne" revival was canceled after she tweeted a racist remark.Adam Rose / ABC

"I was brokenhearted, but I thought, ‘OK, it’s just show business, I’m going to let it go,'" Goodman recalled. "But I went through a period, about a month, where I was very depressed. I’m a depressive anyway, so any excuse that I can get to lower myself, I will. But that had a great deal to do with it, more than I wanted to admit.”

Goodman also defended Barr, 65, whose since-deleted tweet called Obama administration aide Valerie Jarrett the offspring of the "Muslim Brotherhood & 'Planet of the Apes.'"

"I know, I know, for a fact that she’s not a racist," he said, adding that he was stunned by ABC's move to cancel the top-rated series.

"I’ll put it this way, I was surprised at the response," Goodman said. “And that’s probably all I should say about it.”

The actor pointed out that during the controversy Barr agreed to give up her rights to "Roseanne" so that ABC could feature its characters in its upcoming spinoff "The Conners" without Barr benefiting financially.

"She had to sign a paper saying that she relinquished all her rights to the show so that we could go on," he shared. "I sent her an email and thanked her for that. I did not hear anything back, but she was going through hell at the time. And she’s still going through hell."

In May, Barr expressed regret that the show's cancellation would cause Goodman and actress Laurie Metcalf, who played Roseanne Conner's sister Jackie, to lose their jobs.

"I just wish ABC had not thrown two of the greatest actors in the world out with me —Laurie and John," Barr tweeted. "I'm so sick over this — they will never have better character actors on their network."

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