The main voice behind Rick & Morty won’t be returning in season seven and beyond, as Adult Swim has announced that it would cut ties with series co-creator Justin Roiland. The decision comes after news surfaced that he was facing two felony domestic abuse charges in early 2020.
“Adult Swim has ended its association with Justin Roiland,” the Rick and Morty account tweeted today. “Rick and Morty will continue. The talented and dedicated crew are hard at work on Season 7. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Dan Harmon will remain the sole creator through season 10, with the title characters, which had been voiced by Roiland, recast. There’s no mention of the showrunner’s replacement(s) just yet.
Earlier this month, Roiland made a court appearance in an ongoing criminal case in California where he faces felony domestic abuse charges for battery and false imprisonment. The semi-sealed case was kept out of the public until a hearing on 12 January, with Roiland required to attend a scheduled 27 April hearing. He pleaded not guilty to the charges in October 2020, but hasn’t publicly commented on the allegations.
The news came shortly after Roiland’s game studio, Squanch Games, released the comedic first-person shooter game High on Life. It quickly rose to become one of the biggest Xbox Game Pass launch of the year, but a report by Kotaku highlighted that the studio previously faced a sexual harassment lawsuit by a former employee back in 2018. Squanch Games denied the allegations and the affair was later settled out of court, but recent developments have prompted Roiland to officially step down as CEO.
“On January 16, 2023, Squanch Games received Justin Roiland’s resignation,” reads the studio’s statement on Twitter. “The passionate team at Squanch will keep developing games we know our fans will love while continuing to support and improve High On Life.”
No date has been set for Roiland’s trial, but he could face seven years in prison if convicted — in California, felony domestic violence can carry a sentence of up to four years, while felony false imprisonment can carry a sentence of up to three years.