Former ‘Y&R’ EP/HW Maria Arena Bell on Muhney Firing Post TMZ Report: ‘He Should Have Been Let Go Months Before Because of His Behind the Scenes Actions’

Keadrick D. Washington/PR Photos
Keadrick D. Washington/PR Photos

In a new interview with Highlight Hollywood, former executive producer and head writer of “,” , has clarified a statement she made in Soap Opera Digest after the publication released their report on ’s firing from the daytime drama series. In it, she said, “Michael brought amazing dimension and complexity to the role of Adam Newman, and his and Sharon’s [Sharon Case] was a great dark love story. Sadly, that story was seriously derailed in the last year, so I am not surprised that the show would look for a solution to their problematic storytelling decisions. It will be a tough role to recast.” However, with a report by  that says the actor was let go following alleged claims he fondled the breasts of one of his co-stars, Bell now says, “Frankly he should have been let go months before because of his behind the scenes actions.”

You can read Bell’s full statement below:

Sean Smith/JPI Studios
Sean Smith/JPI Studios

“Let me be clear.  Tommy I am a fan of Michael Muhney the actor- not the person. Frankly he should have been let go months before because of his behind the scenes actions. It’s still a loss for the fans. Instead of acting quickly they tried to turn the fans against the character of Adam. Bad move. And they should not recast right away now. It’s too damaged.”  Adding, “The only thing that matters in this story -now  on TMZ is that a young girl is protected. She should have been all along. People should have been more decisive not less in this matter.”

“I think they should have taken immediate action. They didn’t. Whatever happened, they need to protect the safety of the cast.”

Muhney last airs on Thursday, January 30. The show does plan to recast, per the actor in a Huffington Post Canada exit interview.

  • Me

    Just shut up Maria.

    • Jacquie O

      Silence is also an option, Ms Bell

  • Janey

    No doubt. It sounds to me like she’s trying to ruin his reputation.

    • You’re a biased moronic fat slob.

  • Carolyn Rooney

    So she is taking the TMZ slanderous ” he groped a full grown woman’s breast” statement and repeating it without the “alleged”? I hope he sues her till she can’t see straight.

    • You are an idiot.

      • Sandiana

        Who is the idiot when someone stoops to name calling because someone does not agree with them? Look in the mirror.

  • Bexx

    Hunter should have been protected prior to them releasing the story via TMZ. She doesn’t deserve the mudslinging his wolfpack fans are dealing.

    • Sandiana

      I do not believe for one second this took place. That set if full of people & someone would have seen something. She’s probably in love with him & he rejected her advances & now she is crushed & out for revenge ;ie ruining his marriage & career.

      • Bexx

        How do you know that they weren’t alone together? Maybe someone did see something, and it prompted her to come forward. You women watch way too much TV. Men in entertainment getting handsy with a young co-star happens more frequently, than a young girl out for revenge due to rejection. This type of public scrutiny doesn’t advance your career in showbiz, especially when the allegation are against a popular actor.

        • ME

          When this first surfaced, it was mentioned that the second fondling incident was witnessed by one of their costars. MM was busted, appropriately.

          • Bexx

            Well that certainly would explain things. I’m guessing Muhney is going to let things cool down before making a statement, maybe an admission of guilt. The next few weeks should be interesting.

  • Busted

    I don’t believe it for one second that he did anything to her. Look how many beautiful woman( not girls ) that he works with everyday why would he pick her. I hope he sues her so bad as well as TMZ and Y&R. Fire king and phelps .

  • Katie Price

    This is very inappropriate of her. Maria clearly has no business commenting on this matter. She basically thew Michael under the bus too. If these “allegations” are not true I sincerely hope he sues every single one them. Y&R is not trying to protect Hunter. Reason why everybody is coming out throwing rocks at Michael is to save themselves. You see a lot of people are going to boycott the sinking ship of Y&R. We are beyond tired of the pathetic story lines. The best actors are exiting left and right and it’s for a REASON! They are tired and fed up too and so are WE!

    • He has denied nothing on twitter. To me that speaks volumes. Can’t believe the amount of viewers blaming Hunter simply because they like his character on the show. Nonsense like she should just quit if she doesn’t like being groped or she should be flattered or she should be fired instead cuz she can’t act. Lots of pathetic viewers.

      • Sandiana

        Have heard the saying ” I’m not going to justify that question with an answer”? I think he has more in mind. Be smart, keep mouth shut, get a lawyer! Sweet & simple.

        • Bexx

          The innocent need a lawyer? If he didn’t do it, then he should have no trouble making a statement.

          • heather mcdaniels

            Yes, the innocent need a lawyer when it comes to a lawsuit for defamation of character, and boy, is his character being defamed!!

  • shirley

    she states she is a fan of the actor not the person. So, she likes his craft but not his personality. Interesting choice of words. hmm?

    • Sandiana

      No. It was an accurate choice of words. It’s like I love you but I hate your actions.

  • Maria streaks the truth. You sad lonely housewifes are pathetic basing a 20 year old girl just because Adam won’t be making you horny anymore.

    • Sandiana

      Does You sad lonely housewifes are pathetic include your mother? And are you watching the show? Are you a sad pathetic horny little man? The women aren’t. And get an education & learn to spell…it is housewives! NOT housewifes…..shows your lack of education & proves your lack of sense.

      • Bexx

        You should look at your own comment, it’s riddled with errors.

        • Lol yes I noticed I accidentally mispelled speaks and bashing. This site doesn’t let me edit my comment to fix my error. I must have been typing too quickly and not paying attention.. And Sandiana, no my mother does not watch soaps. I do watch soaps sometimes. Not Y&R.

  • Aihealedjoo

    Wow amazing how you men think. We as housewives/women/viewers think he is being set up for the simple fact it took them long enough to come up with some lame story. First there was no reason, Then it was blamed on Eric Braeden (Victor Newman)…. Now they come up with this lame stuff. IF (and I mean IF) they had a problem with MM months ago..WHY WAS THIS NOT ADDRESSED MONTHS AGO?! If he fondled her twice, WHY DID SHE LET IT GO THE FIRST TIME? Come on, lets get real.
    Sounds really fishy to me.

    • Philip

      That is call rationalizing on your part. They probably tried to work it out but came to the conclusion that they could not. He could have gotten a warning the first time and did it again. After the 2nd time they knew it couldn’t be worked out.

      CBS and HK probably did not want it to get out. CBS or Sony never addressed the so called problems with the actor who played Adam before and his supposed homophobia.

      They probably wanted this dropped and it not go public, but his fans and Maria Bell kept it going. After her remarks this last week in support of him and her jabs at the current regime you finally got this article from TMZ. People like the folks at We Love Soaps and Michael Logan have known the truth all along but kept silent. But now that TMZ has broken the story tons more sites are picking it up.

      I find it telling that these rumors have been posted on numerous sites all along and Muhney has once even denied them. You better believe I wouldn’t want folks dragging my name through the mud. And most times agents want to get the actors story out there first. Still nothing. That is very telling to me.

      • Sandiana

        Have heard the saying ” I’m not going to justify that question with an answer”? I think he has more in mind.

        • Bexx

          Yeah, sure. An allegation that could destroy your marriage and prevent you from gaining future employment, and you don’t want to answer the question. Ok.

    • Bexx

      Please don’t say ‘we’ I’m a woman and I don’t find psychopaths sexy.

  • Alice Brooke

    I have to wonder why they let him work an additional 3 days after this happened. If someone is being fired for sexual advances they are immediately told to leave or open themselves up to lawsuits. Was Michael really that stupid to not only ruin his career but also do damage to his family? And why didn’t Hunter report this after the first time? Too many unanswered questions.

    • Andrew Hass

      Maybe after Michael did it the first time Hunter may have thought it would only happen that one time and she didn’t want cause problems.Maybe she even warned him if he did it again she would go to their bosses then.Also maybe this isn’t the first time Michael did something like this with an actress and not just Hunter King.Plus maybe the show couldn’t just let him go because of his contract and had to wait a bit to do it.Plus i can’t see the show getting rid of him unless they had something more than just Hunter’s word.Maybe there was a witness or corroborating evidence like it got caught on camera somewhere.

      • heather mcdaniels

        Muhney was told on Monday that he was being let go and his last day was Thursday. What, you think he did it on Monday, then decided to do it again the last day? I doubt it! He said he had been “outspoken” on set, and it got him in trouble a few times. Nothing about “I grabbed some kid’s chest so they decided to fire me.”

  • Sandiana

    I want to know that if this true why didn’t she file charges against him? Was she a tease & it ended up with him touching her or did she touch him first & he returned the gesture but laughed if off & she got angry? I am a woman & i know men know who they can & can not make a play on. We ladies send signals & flirt & it can backfire or we can act like Monica Lewinsky & go public & blame the man for everything! Just like judicial system I want proof & the burdeon lies on the accuser.

    • Philip

      For one thing you don’t just file charges for sexual harrassment. If he raped her yes she could have. with harrassment you usually file a lawsuit. And that could still happen. I wouldn’t blame her if she did.

      • Jack’s Mom

        This is not sexual harassment. For it to be, he would need authority over her. He is not her boss. They don’t even share scenes. IF he did this, it is sexual assault and yes you can file charges for that.

    • mom chez

      I agree

  • Philip

    Have any of you ever heard of a company doing an investigation? I am sure a company as big as Sony and as CBS investigated the allegations before they fired Muhney. Not only were they firing an actor based on allegations made by a co-star but they were firing him mid-contract. Companies as big as those don’t go into something that is going to leave them open to being sued.

    And good grief folks even Paula Dean and her pr team were hard at work immediately after the story broke denying what was being said about her. Chris Engen (Muhney’s predecessor as Adam) was accused of homophobia and even he spoke out within 24 hours addressing the allegations.

    The story has made even the New York Daily News now. It is out there. People know about it. Yet he is still silent.

    Even his good friend Nelson Branco isn’t addressing this suddenly.

    • Bexx

      What’s frightening is people thinking the head of CBS daytime just leaked the story over to TMZ. Amazing how many people think CBS/Sony would just openly expose themselves to a lawsuit by Muhney due to some school-girl jealousy on the part of Hunter. I laugh at those accusing CBS of trying to destroy Muhney, while simultaneously shouting that he should be hired back.

  • Trina

    This is a bunch of bullshit. These writers are trying to cover their ass by trying to take the attention away from the fact that they fired someone the fans loved

  • Disgusted

    Wow, I thought all women would react negatively toward Michael, but obviously it changes things when one has an imaginary romance with a TV star. You people are pathetic – and to make things worse, actually running a young women’s name through the mud who is innocent. If you think she isn’t, why didn’t Maria fire her instead of Michael? She knows what is going on.

    • Jack’s Mom

      Maria doesn’t even work there anymore, so she can’t fire anybody. Hunter didn’t work there when Maria did, so she never worked with her at all. No one knows what really happened here. The only people who truly know what happened are Michael and Hunter and they are both hiding from Twitter.

  • CiCi

    This has become a media circus. Someone needs to come out with the truth, and confirm or squash the allegations and rumors, and move on.

  • Shell

    Geesh, What is wrong with some of you people? Do you have daughters? If your daughter claimed sexual harrassment- Would you want her to be talked about that way. Accusing her of coming on to him, being a tease, dressing to provoke.
    I am going to miss this actor, in fact I have been missing Y&R. I am not watching after he leaves, not because now of his wronged firing- but because the show has lost the edge I loved and he did make the show worth tuning in. If he is truly guilty of these accusations then he deserved to be fired and he needs to seek some help and forgiveness from his wife and family.

  • Lorrie Kundrat

    Wow nothing like blaming the victim ladies. The actor wasn’t that great I found him bland and one dimensional. I feel it will be no great loss if he goes. The workplace needs to be safe for ALL employees. I feel so bad for the young lady and what she had to go through before she complained..

  • Bexx

    I think the funniest thing I’ve read from one of Muhney parasite fans is that CBS is lying just to make Steven Burton popular. Yes, people really are that stupid.

    • heather mcdaniels

      And yet Steve Burton will be front and center in a MAJOR storyline starting right about the time that both Billy Miller and Michael Muhney will both be exiting the canvas…coincidence? Ever read his interview from Feb 8, 2013 in SOD? CBS gave him a VERY sweet contract…he says so…

  • Gail Gentry

    I think all of you out here needs to know that everyone makes mistakes and can ask for forgiveness if that is the case but why judge if you don’t know the whole story, Why bother

    • Bexx

      Do you have a daughter? To seek forgiveness you must first need to admit your mistake. He, and his team were quite vocal about his firing, yet not one word about these allegations?

  • econnors

    Like all media stories, this is a collection of hearsay….The 20 year old girl was not
    trapped in a corner, she makes millions. She is not a child, she could have handled it herself or left. Rejection is a powerful force.

  • JanMarie

    REALLY Maria!!! This coming from the same person who knew that Jeanne Cooper was crotch grabbing the men from Y&R, as is stated in Her book and stated by Josh M on the tribute..Did U do anything to Ms Cooper???? you are truly a 2 faced / back stabbing bitch..not to mention U are responsible for the hideous/ asinine story line of the baby killing / swapping between Sharon and Ashley

    • TIFF

      And NONE of them minded! When someone DOESNT want it, THEN It’s a problem!!

  • Jack’s Mom

    No one actually knows the truth here because no official statement has been made. They all talk about Michael being quiet on Twitter. Hunter hasn’t tweeted either. I have been a very vocal supporter of him. Innocent until proven guilty. But if he did this, then it shouldn’t just be losing his job. He should be arrested. No man has the right to attack or touch any woman for any reason. Add to that he is 38 and she is 20. Add to that he is married with three children (one being a little girl) and it gets worse. But that is IF this happened and that is a big IF. There have also been countless times that innocent people have been accused of assault. There are many documented cases of women and girls who lie for attention, who lie to get what they want and who lie for revenge when they come on to someone and that someone isn’t interested. Everyone needs to stop screaming and start breathing. I wish someone would actually give an official statement about this mess. And usually men don’t just do that once. Are there other victims? Usually girls don’t just lie or accuse once. Have there been other accusations against other men?

    • heather mcdaniels

      And Jeanne Cooper should have been arrested for pinching the guys’ rear ends and grabbing their groins? It’s a well-known fact that she did that on set often, especially when they were filming, “just to see the actor jump and if he would stop or continue on with his lines.” The good ones kept going and talked to her afterward, usually laughing with her about it. Why, after 40 years, was she never arrested or something done? Oh, because she’s a woman, right, and they can do stuff like that? No double standards in my world!

      • TIFF

        Difference is that it becomes workplace sexual harassment when it’s UNWELCOME.

  • heather mcdaniels

    Geeze, woman, jump on the bandwagon before anyone even knows if it’s truth or fiction. This is what’s known as CYA, just in case, Ms Bell. Sheesh. If Mr. Muhney was such a problem, why didn’t you fire him instead of having him on the show for 5 years, CBS, and then asking him to sign on for another two just this past 2013? His contract wouldn’t have been up until about April of 2015… Something’s funny here, and it’s not this lady’s insulting words toward an amazing actor…

  • mshickman_31088

    Maybe they can bring back the first Adam.