An Emmy-winning camera operator is suing Warner Bros. claiming he was fired from his longstanding television job simply because he is “white.”
According to new legal documents, obtained by The Blast, a veteran cameraman named Brian Armstrong is suing Warner Bros. after working for the company on various television shows for over 20 years. This included most recently being employed as a Camera Operator/Technician on the television show, “The Big Bang Theory” through 2019.
In the filing, Armstrong points out that he is a highly qualified camera operator and “is one of the very few camera operators to have been nominated for an Emmy Award eight (8) years in a row. Additionally, he actually won an Emmy Award for excellence in camera work in “The Big Bang Theory” in close time proximity to the following events.
Veteran Camera Operator Claims Warner Bros. Fired Him For Being ‘White’
To start, Armstong claims that throughout his time working for “The Big Bang Theory” in 2019, the producers, cast, and crew “created a hostile work environment replete with slurs, tropes, stereotypes, and hate speech.” In the suit, he makes a point that upper management was aware of the situation and failed to prevent or correct “any of the harassment.”
The problems started after BBT was finished and Warner Bros. and many of the crew members began preparation and production of “Bob Hearts Abishola.” The stars of the show included a lead character who is African-American. Armstrong points out that Warner Bros. had not previously included “an African American or black lead main recurring character on any of its shows that he had worked on as a Camera Operator.”
The show is a sitcom about a businessman who falls in love with a Nigerian nurse, Abishola Adebambo, after suffering a heart attack and being hospitalized for it.
Armstrong claims, “In or around this time, (Warner Bros.) both officially and through statements by its managing agents and other officers, management, producers, announced that the race and color of the crew for Abishola would strive to mirror the proportion of racial, ethnic, ancestral, and color background of the cast of Abishola wherein more than 50% of the recurring actors are African American and black.”
So, they allegedly fired him.
Cameraman Claims Producers Used Less Qualified Employees On Basis Of ‘Race And Color’
He added, the company “engaged in similar treatment toward a large group of employees, workers, and contractual parties many, if not all of whom, were white.”
Specifically, Brad says the show producers replaced him with a “much less qualified” person who had less seniority on the “basis of race and color.”
Bottom line, Armstrong claims “In 2019, management told (Armstrong) that he could not be considered to be hired for Abishola including for the express reasons that he was “white” and “Caucasian.” He continued that the Executive Producer ordered employees responsible for hiring crew not to hire “white” crew members.
The former cameraman says he reported the situation to the Human Resources Department and was interviewed by its President on two occasions. Obviously, it didn’t go his way — and he decided to file a lawsuit against the company.
In the end, Brad says the company also “failed to hire other “me too” white and Caucasian workers in a pattern and practice of discrimination.”