Following actor Amber Dixon Brenner’s explosive allegations that producer-director Salim Akil abused her sexually and physically, OWN has canceled Love Is___, which Akil produced with his wife, Mara Brock Akil, who created the series and served as its showrunner.
The show’s first season aired earlier in 2018 and was renewed for a second season, set to air in 2019. Variety reports that the new season was in preproduction when OWN pulled the plug. According to the press release that announced it in 2017, the show purportedly drew its inspiration from the Akils’ real-life relationship.
Additionally, Variety reports that according to its sources, an internal investigation at Warner Bros. Television found no allegations of misconduct on Love Is___ or Black Lightning, which is executive produced by Salim Akil. (WB produces both shows.) Black Lightning, according to the trade, has continued uninterrupted and Akil remains the showrunner.
Jezebel broke the story in November about Brenner’s lawsuit against Salim Akil, which in addition to detailing horrors of alleged abuse also accuses him of breach of contract regarding a script Brenner wrote that she says he mined for content without proper credit. Salim Akil’s attorney sent Jezebel a statement saying that Brenner’s allegations were “totally untrue.”
Mara Brock Akil responded to OWN’s cancellation of her show on Instagram, saying that she was “saddened” that Love Is___ would cease production: