The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation on Thursday congratulated Fox for deciding to pull its planned two-hour reality show, Seriously Dude I'm Gay.
"Fox deserves a lot of credit for doing the right thing here," said GLAAD Executive Director Joan M. Garry in a statement. "They offered us an advance copy of the show and were incredibly responsive to our grave concerns. They worked with us to schedule a meeting and preempted that meeting with a decision to shelve the show."
Seriously, Dude, I'm Gay, in which straight men had to convince friends and family that they were gay in order to win $50,000, had been slated for Monday, June 7. A showing of theatrical American Pie 2 will air in its place.
Garry and Entertainment Media Director Stephen Macias called the show "an exercise in systematic humiliation," with contestants referring to the experience as their "worst nightmare" and complaining that they were "trapped in gay hell."
As part of follow-up with GLAAD, Fox has asked the group to participate in a meeting examining Fox's representation of gay and transgendered people.
The whole project got off to a rocky start. When Fox announced the show two weeks ago, it had to quickly pull an initial press release that called turning gay "every heterosexual male's worst nightmare." Later that day, Fox apologized and sent out a replacement release.
Seriously, Dude, I'm Gay was produced by Rocket Science Laboratories, the same company that did Joe Millionaire, My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiance and Temptation Island.
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Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.