|Robertson to Return to 'Duck Dynasty' After Anti-Gay Comments|
|By MICHAEL ROTHMAN (@TheRealRothman)||Dec 27, 2013, 5:38 PM|
Phil Robertson's future with the hit reality show "Duck Dynasty" is no longer in question. After being suspended by A&E for an interview he gave with GQ magazine, where he made anti-gay comments, today the network released a statement saying he would return to the show in 2014.
"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," the release stated.
It also added that the network would "use this moment to launch a national public service campaign (PSA) promoting unity, tolerance and acceptance among all people, a message that supports our core values as a company, and the values found in 'Duck Dynasty.' These PSAs will air across our entire portfolio."
The suspension that occurred more than a week ago and today's announcement came after the "Duck Dynasty" patriarch, 67, said that he believed homosexuality to be a sin and that he never saw the mistreatment of any black person growing up in Louisiana before the civil rights era.
Robertson later defended his comments and said all he did was quote from the Bible and that he would "not give or back off from my path."
A&E explained the decision to bring Robertson back, added today that "Duck Dynasty" is not a show about one man's views - Robertson's - and that "it resonates with a large audience because it is a show about family... a family that America has come to love ... they come together to reflect and pray for unity, tolerance and forgiveness."
EDITOR'S NOTE: ABC is a part owner of the A&E Network