Coming on the heels of the controversy surrounding popular podcaster Joe Rogan, noted for his use of racial slurs, using the N-word multiple times on his show, as well as false spread COVID-19 disinformation and the continual backing by Founder and CEO of Spotify Daniel Ek, Ava DuVernay‘s Array film distribution company has officially nullified its dealings with Spotify.
Despite acknowledging Rogan’s behaviour, Spotify has not directly publicly called him out.
Daniel Ek, the founder and CEO of Spotify, shared earlier this month, “There are no words I can say to adequately convey how deeply sorry I am for the way The Joe Rogan Experience controversy continues to impact each of you. I think it’s important you’re aware that we’ve had conversations with Joe and his team about some of the content in his show, including his history of using some racially insensitive language.”
Recall that a multi-year first-look deal was announced last year, January 2021 stating DuVernay’s company Array would be producing multiple scripted and unscripted shows for the streaming service through Gimlet – a Spotify owned podcast studio.
Commenting on the news at the time, DuVernay in a statement said: “Recognizing the undeniable power of voice and sound, I’m thrilled to extend Array’s storytelling into the realm of podcasts,” “The opportunity to work with Lydia Polgreen and her passionate team drew us to Spotify as a home for our audio narratives and we couldn’t be more excited to begin this new creative journey.”
Polgreen of Gimlet commented on the development at the time, stating, “Ava DuVernay and her team at Array are at the forefront of telling powerful stories about the most pressing issues of our time. We’re so excited to bring their passion for lifting up forgotten and neglected voices to life in audio.”
However, a spokesperson for Array recently announced their departure from the streaming giant.
Hollywood Reporter reports although plans were being made for the projects “under the pact, multiple projects were in development” none was released