"Duck Dynasty" executive producer Deirdre Gurney addressed the controversy surrounding Phil Robertson's comments about homosexuality last December, saying in a recent interview that, though she was silent in the wake of outrage, she wanted to defend the reality star's character.
"I don’t think anyone expected it to be that kind of a reaction and get that much attention, and so no one was prepared with what this really meant, what to say," she told the Hollywood Reporter during the outlet's "Reality Roundtable."
[sharequote align="center"]"I don’t think anyone expected it to be that kind of a reaction…"[/sharequote]
Gurney explained that her company, Gurney Productions, was not a part of managing the fallout late last year, as it's the network's job to handle controversies that erupt involving talent. As TheBlaze previously reported, A&E ended up briefly suspending Robertson.
Phil Robertson addresses the Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans, La., Thursday, May 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)
Gurney said she wished she could have spoken out about the patriarch's character and positive treatment of others.
"What I wanted to do was to be able to speak and explain, but we couldn’t. We know our talent. I know Phil Robertson. I know his beliefs," she explained. "I know how he treats a crew that has several gay people on the crew, people of different races and people from all different places and who love this show … and this family treats them like family."
[sharequote align="center"]"I know Phil Robertson. I know his beliefs. I know how he treats a crew."[/sharequote]
Gurney added that she believes there's a difference between what Robertson believes and how he thinks people should be treated.
"He stands by his beliefs," she added.
Watch the segment below:
Robertson recently doubled-down on his views on sin and homosexuality.
(H/T: Hollywood Reporter)