Arnold Schwarzenegger said that he won’t ever do another season of “Celebrity Apprentice,” and he’s blaming Donald Trump’s continued involvement in the show as a reason the show’s ratings have taken a nose dive.
“I loved every second of working with NBC and Mark Burnett. Everyone – from the celebrities to the crew to the marketing department – was a straight 10, and I would absolutely work with all of them again on a show that doesn’t have this baggage,” Schwarzenegger said in a statement following an interview with Empire magazine, in which he said that the show suffered from its association with Trump.
“Even if asked [to do it again] I would decline.” Schwarzenegger said in the interview. “With Trump being involved in the show people have a bad taste and don’t want to participate as a spectator or as a sponsor or in any other way support the show. It’s a very divisive period now and I think this show got caught up in all that division.”
Schwarzenegger added, “It’s not about the show… because everyone I ran into came up to me and said ‘I love the show… but I turned it off because as soon as I read Trump’s name I’m outta there!”
Donald Trump has an executive producer credit on the show, even though he left his on-screen role when his presidential campaign began.
“NBC did everything they could to promote the show and [producer] Mark Burnett did a fantastic job,” Schwarzenegger told the magazine. “No one really knew that this was going to happen and I think that everyone was caught off guard.”
“When people found out that Trump was still involved as executive producer and was still receiving money from the show, then half the people [started] boycotting it.”
The show seems to have struggled with ratings this season. Trump and Schwarzenegger have had a back-and-forth on Twitter over the show’s ratings.
On Feb. 3rd Trump tweeted, “Yes, Arnold Schwarzenegger did a really bad job as Governor of California and even worse on the Apprentice…but at least he tried hard!
Of course, Donald Trump has a very different point of view on the matter, as is his custom. U.S. President Donald Trump disputed Arnold Schwarzenegger’s announcement about quitting as host of “The Celebrity Apprentice,” saying Saturday that Schwarzenegger was leaving after drawing few viewers.
“Arnold Schwarzenegger isn’t voluntarily leaving the Apprentice, he was fired by bad (pathetic) ratings, not by me,” Trump wrote in a message on his personal Twitter account. “Sad end to great show.”
In response to Trump’s accusation, Schwarzenegger posted on his Twitter account, “You should think about hiring a new joke writer and a fact checker.”
As with anything else in President Trump’s world there are the facts and then there are the “alternative facts”.
Schwarzenegger, a movie star and the former governor of California, took over as the host of “Celebrity Apprentice” last year. His first season premiered in January, and was watched by around 4 to 5 million viewers.