Frankie Shaw Brainstorming "Better Communications Structure" After 'SMILF' Misconduct Claims

The Showtime drama's lead actress and creator addressed accusations of a chaotic set on 'Late Night With Seth Meyers' hours after an appearance on 'The Today Show.'
Lloyd Bishop/NBC
Frankie Shaw with 'Late Night' host Seth Meyers

Frankie Shaw says she's rethinking the communications and management structure of her show SMILF following the announcement of an investigation into misconduct claims on the show's set.

Late Night With Seth Meyers host Seth Meyers asked the show's creator, showrunner and lead actress to respond to the claims when she appeared on his show on Wednesday night, as well as speak to her responsibility as a boss.

"I would say I've learned so much, there's so many lessons. I went from making short films in my basement to running a crew of over 215 people," Shaw said. "There are a lot of lessons along the way. I'm right now thinking about a better structure for communication and how to delegate more and have a team around me, and just thinking about how everyone can feel seen and heard, essentially."

Meyers responded by saying that after he read about the misconduct claims, he found himself wishing there was a management course for showrunners.

"Thank you for saying that," Shaw responded. "I'll clap to that."

The claims, which The Hollywood Reporter exclusively reported in December, included an actress who said she was pressured into doing a nude scene despite a no-nudity clause. The same employee, who has since left the show, said that set monitors were turned on when the set was supposed to be closed at the actors' request.

Showtime and ABC Studios subsequently initiated an investigation into set conditions on season two; a third season has not yet been ordered.

In a statement through an attorney, Shaw said in response to the allegations in December, “I work daily to create an environment in which everyone should feel safe, and in which I can continue to grow as a leader and manager. I am now and always have been open to hearing and addressing all concerns and issues that fall within my control. It pains me to learn that anyone felt uncomfortable on my set. I sincerely hope we can work together to resolve any and all issues, as I am committed to creating a workplace in which all people feel safe and heard."

Leading up to SMILF's second-season premiere, Shaw has continued to address the claims in public. Also on Wednesday, the showrunner appeared on The Today Show in conversation with Hoda Kotb. She expressed that during production on SMILF, which is her first series as a creator, she was "moving fast and learning on the go." Shaw continued, "I'm just really grateful that I can take these lessons and be more of an aware and attuned showrunner moving forward."

SMILF returns for its second-season premiere on Showtime on Sunday. Watch her appearance on Late Night below.