A&E Cancels Controversial KKK Documentary Series

Just a week after announcing it
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 24, 2016 3:50 PM CST
Peace activist Arno Michaelis speaks with Chris Buckley, the Grand Knighthawk for the North Georgia White Knights, on A&E's controversial documentary series “Generation KKK,” which was renamed "Escaping...   (TIJAT/A&E via AP)

(Newser) – A&E canceled its controversial new documentary about the KKK on Saturday—just a week after it was announced, the Hollywood Reporter reports. But what a week it was. People were concerned the show, originally titled Generation KKK, would give the hate group a spotlight and normalize them. According to USA Today, rights group Color of Change started a petition to get the show canceled. A&E then brought Color of Change—as well as the Anti-Defamation League—on board. The network renamed the show Escaping the KKK on Friday, hoping to clarify that it was actually about people who help KKK members leave the group.

But viewers will never get a chance to judge the show for themselves, and apparently not because of the controversy. A&E canceled Escaping the KKK after learning that producers on it paid some of its subjects to get access. "While we stand behind the intent of the series and the seriousness of the content, these payments are a direct violation of A&E’s policies and practices for a documentary," the Reporter quotes the network as stating. A&E says it doesn't believe any payments were made to the KKK itself. Escaping the KKK had been set to premiere next month. (Read more KKK stories.)

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