MTV has halted production of Catfish as it opens an investigation into sexual misconduct allegations that involve the shows host and executive producer, Yaniv “Nev” Schulman. In a statement to the Daily Beast, which a representative also provided Vanity Fair, the network said, “We take these allegations very seriously. Were working with Critical Content, our third-party production company, to conduct a thorough investigation.” Meanwhile, Schulman has denied the claims. In his own statement, Schulman told the Daily Beast, “I have always been transparent about my life and would always take responsibility for my actions—but these claims are false.”
Catfish has aired on MTV for seven seasons, since 2012. It was inspired by a 2010 documentary starring Schulman—who also served as a cinematographer—in which Schulman and his friends documented Schulmans budding online relationship with a woman named “Megan.” The doc is credited with coining the term “catfishing” to describe when someone creates a false persona online.
Schulman has been at the center of controversy in the past as well. In 2014, he admitted to punching a woman in 2006, when he was attending Sarah Lawrence. Schulman claimed in his book, In Real Life: Love, Lies & Identity in the Digital Age, that he was acting out of self-defense—but a woman who claimed to be his victim told a different story. Schulman said in the book that although the case was dismissed, he was kicked out of Sarah Lawrence following the incident. Two years ago, Schulman also drew ire with a tweet in which he wrote, “#BlackGirlsRock I totally agree. They also tend to #catfish a lot. Just sayin.”
Schulman did not immediately respond to V.F.s request for comment.
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