Hours and hours after Chloe Dykstra implied that Chris Hardwick sexually assaulted her while they were involved, the Talking Dead host has strongly denied the claims of his former girlfriend.
“These are very serious allegations and not to be taken lightly which is why I’ve taken the day to consider how to respond,” said Hardwick in a statement Friday night. “I was heartbroken to read Chloe’s post. Our three year relationship was not perfect—we were ultimately not a good match and argued—even shouted at each other—but I loved her, and did my best to uplift and support her as a partner and companion in any way and at no time did I sexually assault her.”
Hardwick went on to detail the circumstances of their eventual separation, seemingly quote from Dykstra and how he was “blindsided” by her online account earlier today.
“When we were living together, I found out that Chloe had cheated on me, and I ended the relationship,” Hardwick asserts. “For several weeks after we broke up, she asked to get back together with me and even told me she wanted to have kids with me, ‘build a life’ with me and told me that I was ‘the one,’ but I did not want to be with someone who was unfaithful,” he added in the carefully crafted response. “I’m devastated to read that she is now accusing me of conduct that did not occur. l was blindsided by her post and always wanted the best for her. As a husband, a son, and future father, I do not condone any kind of mistreatment of women.”
The response from the long time AMC host and Nerdist founder came late in the day after ex-girlfriend Dykstra wrote a harrowing first-person account of their three-year relationship online.
While never calling out Hardwick directly by name, the Web TV personality and cast member of Syfy’s Heroes of Cosplay‘s post on Medium had numerous details about the “mildly successful podcaster” who became “a powerhouse CEO of his own company, their age difference and more. Details that pretty clearly were indicative of the now married Hardwick, who announced his break up with Dykstra in 2014 online.
Since Dykstra went public with her claims earlier today, pressure has been building on AMC to halt the June 17 Season 2 debut of Talking With Chris Hardwick, either permanently or at least until a full investigation into the actress’ claims is conducted. The cabler and home of The Walking Dead has remained silent on the matter but sources tell Deadline that execs have been mulling over the pleas of reps of Talkingguests to address the situation.
Set to play a big presence next month at San Diego Comic-Con, as he has in past years, there is no word if Hardwick will still moderate the inaugural panel of first female Doctor Who Jodie Whittaker or the Hall H return of The Walking Dead.
In her essay this morning, Dykstra outlined a relationship that had restrictions placed on her going out at night, having male friends or speaking in public. Most damning it also claimed that she was the victim of sexual and emotional assault by the unnamed ex-boyfriend.
Dykstra also alleged that after she broke up with him, Hardwick and a female colleague successfully worked to have her blacklisted from the industry, calling companies she had been employed by “to get me fired by threatening to never work with them.”
Additionally, Dykstra also took to Twitter on her claims and the response she had received:
I quietly posted an article today, unlisted on Medium. It clearly made the rounds. I’m overwhelmed and I want to thank all of you for your support and kind words- they mean so much to me. I may take some time off the internet, please know your support means everything to me.
— Chloe Dykstra (@skydart) June 15, 2018
Before I take my break, I do want to address something re: the company he founded. As I understand it, the person has not been associated with that company for several years, and I hope that they will not suffer as a result of my essay. Be kind to them, they are good people.
— Chloe Dykstra (@skydart) June 15, 2018
However, the allegations did quickly prompt now Nerdist owners Legendary Entertainment on Friday to bleach out any reference to Hardwick on the site he founded. name from the website he started.
“Chris Hardwick had no operational involvement with Nerdist for the two years preceding the expiration of his contract in December 2017,” Legendary said. “He no longer has any affiliation with Legendary Digital Networks. The company has removed all reference to Mr. Hardwick even as the original Founder of Nerdist pending further investigation.”