Comedian T.J. Miller’s exit from the hit HBO show “Silicon Valley” was not a clean break, sources said.
HBO announced in May 2017 that Miller was departing from the show after the fourth season. The network called it a “mutual agreement” at the time.
However, employees on the show’s set told The Hollywood Reporter that Miller was “explosive” and “almost a danger to have around.” Other employees hinted the comedian was dealing with “demons” and had substance abuse issues.
The employees also said Miller, 36, would fall asleep often on set or would not even bother to show up some days.
The show’s creator, Mike Judge, appeared to confirm that Miller would not show up some days.
“There are a lot of different ways you can find out somebody doesn’t want to do the show anymore,” Judge told The Hollywood Reporter. “And it’s not fun to work with someone who doesn’t want to be there, [especially when] they’re one of the main people and you’ve got however many crewmembers and extras and people who are [not paid as well] and they’re all showing up before 7 a.m., and then are just like, ‘Oh, OK, we’re not shooting today.’”
Judge concluded by saying, “It just wasn’t working.”
Miller defended himself in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter claiming his schedule at the time was stacked. He also claimed he was not “blackout drunk, bumping into things on set.”
“What was occurring was I was out doing stand-up all the time, even if it meant I only got three hours of sleep. So, the thing I have a problem with? It’s pushing myself to do too much," Miller said.
Alec Berg, the show’s executive producer, told The Hollywood Reporter the show would be fine without Miller’s presence, and compared the situation to a basketball team.
“These guys are the Golden State Warriors of comedy,” Berg said of the series’ cast: Thomas Middleditch, Kumail Nanjiani, Zach Woods and Martin Starr. “So, it’s like, yeah, we’ve lost Andre Iguodala but we still have Steph Curry and Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson.”
“T.J. wasn’t LeBron [James],” Berg concluded.
Miller responded to Berg’s sports reference stating, “Oh, that’s great. And it makes me like him more [because] he’s so good at being an a--hole.”
In December, Miller was accused of sexual assault by an anonymous woman. The woman told The Daily Beast she and Miller had a consensual relationship in college but recalled distinct moments of unwanted and violent encounters with the comedian.
Miller and his wife Kate Gorney vehemently denied the allegations.
Following the allegations, Miller’s series “The Gorburger Show” was canceled by Comedy Central.