Steven Seagal believes politics played a role in “Lawman” troubles

In the movies, Steven Seagal always gets his way. But a recent TV project from the action star ran into some trouble that not even his steely-eyed gaze and aikido expertise could counter. The third season of his reality show, Steven Seagal Lawman, proved to be a bit too controversial for A&E to air so it has remained unseen … until now.

Seagal’s exploits as a deputy sheriff in Maricopa County, Ariz., under the auspices of notorious Sheriff Joe Arpaio, will finally make their way to audiences as ReelzChannel begins airing “The Lost Season” Jan. 2. While Arpaio and Seagal are able to generate plenty of headlines on their own, a particular incident arose that put these Lawman episodes under greater scrutiny. A raid on a suspected cockfighting ringleader’s house — during which Seagal rode in a tank — led to a lawsuit on behalf of the arrested suspect, who claimed the arrest was overkill and that his 11-month-old puppy was shot to death during the ordeal. (Note: The raid will be included in one of the episodes airing on ReelzChannel.) Clouds also hung over the show because of its messy departure from Louisiana, where it had spent its first two seasons. A former model accused Seagal of sexual harassment after she was hired to be his assistant, leading the Jefferson Parish sheriff to halt production. That lawsuit was later dismissed.

Seagal talked to us about his feelings now that the show will see the light of day, and talked frankly about what he believes led to the controversy in the first place:

Channel Guide Magazine: How are you feeling now that this lost season of Steven Seagal Lawman will finally get to be seen?

Steven Seagal: I’m happy about that. It’s a pity when politics gets into TV and shows like that because I really was kind of given the clear impression that it was politics out of Washington that made A&E not want to do this anymore. I think it was really our president’s opinion of my sheriff that was also an issue with certain people.

CGM: Sheriff Joe is obviously a notorious figure. How do you two get along?

SS: He’s like an older brother to me. I think he’s a great man. He was very high up in the DEA, a very hardworking cop for a long time. It’s not like he’s some guy who’s making it up as he goes along, you know what I mean?

CGM: This season of Lawman moves from Jefferson Parish, La., to Arizona. Other than geography, how does that change in setting affect the show?

SS: I think the border makes a huge difference. I don’t know if we’ll continue to do this with someone else or what, but the narco cartels and all that they got going on is a lot. There’s all kinds of kidnapping, murder, narco trafficking, there’s narco terrorism, smuggling and bringing in terrorists from other countries across the border, the issues of open border, the issues of politicians wanting open borders, the billions of dollars of narcotics that are traveling across the borders. There’s a lot of violence, a lot of drugs, a lot of politics. They range from actual terrorism to kidnapping to murder, narco trafficking, human trafficking to human slavery. It’s a big subject.

Steven Seagal | Reelz Specials | Steven Seagal: Lawman | Movie Trailer | Review

CGM: You had been in Louisiana for more than 20 years. What was the adjustment like joining a new force?

SS: Once they ride with me, see how I shoot, see how I fight, see how I interpret the law, see how I interact with the community and the good guys and bad guys, they know right away that I’m a cop, and that I know how to do it. After that, it doesn’t take long to just sort of become one big family. I think that it’s also very hilarious how there’s this group of people who are not all but primarily paid people who are paid to pick at Joe Arpaio and say discouraging things about him, particularly that he’s a racist. That’s just hilarious to me. I mean, 90 percent of my team are Mexican-Americans. (laughs)

RELATED: Steven Seagal interview before Season 1 of Lawman

CGM: Take me back to when all the controversy over the season was going on. What were you thinking about it all?

SS: I could see that A&E was strongly influenced by Washington. I don’t have any animosity toward A&E at all, I just think that they have their understanding of things that may be a little different from mine. Everybody has their own vision of how they want to accomplish their dreams and what they believe in. I respect everybody. I even respect the people I disagree with. I respect the people in Washington that I disagree with primarily. Not always, but primarily. The great thing about America is we’re supposed to be able to live together and still disagree.

CGM: Are you still doing your police work?

SS: Absolutely. It’s all the same. All the same.

CGM: Between this and True Justice, you seem to have really found a home with ReelzChannel.

SS: Yeah, I think that even when it comes to The Kennedys, my understanding is — and I could be wrong — that A&E owned that and they were influenced and pressured from Washington and wanted to drop it like a hot potato. Stanley [Reelz CEO Stan Hubbard] is a visionary, as I’ve always said, and he’s not afraid of the pitiful antics of these manipulating politicians. He bought The Kennedys, aired it, and it was tremendously successful for him, and I think it’s going to be the same with this. The only sad thing is I need to edit this stuff, and there’s a lot of great footage that’s all been destroyed … for some mysterious reason. So we kind of just have what we have, which is unfortunate.

CGM: Speaking of True Justice, will there be more episodes of that produced?

SS: If we get the right amount of money so that we can do it in a fashion that is respectable and good, I would be happy to do it.

Steven Seagal Lawman airs at 10pm Thursdays beginning Jan. 2 on ReelzChannel.

Steven Seagal Lawman ReelzChannel Arizona

Photo: Courtesy of ReelzChannel


  1. Sensei Seven Seagal Aikido is really very good. His moves are well worth studing. He puts himsself on the front line when he really does not have to, he is the real deal. I wish that we had “Lawman” playing regularly in Australia.
    Grant McGuinness: (Sandan (3rd dan) Aikido Aiki-kai)

  2. This man is a hero of mine. I watched his movies as a young boy with my dad. Now my son watches some of those movies with me. My dad and I watched both seasons of lawman together. I saw his band in Portland years ago with my girlfriend in the front row. We were jamming and dancing all night. My xbox live screen name is his name (add hd). Keep up the good work Mr. Seagal. I respect you and would love nothing more than to introduce my sons to you one day. Good luck on future projects.

  3. I’m glad to hear that the long lost third season of STEVEN SEAGAL:LAWMAN has found a new home at Reelz Channel,even if Seagal is starting to sound like Chuck Norris,political view-wise.

  4. Steven Seagal, me encanta y todo lo que realiza, soy una fan enamorada, por lo tanto no creo en nada de lo que dicen.

  5. Seagal is a great martial artist and expert with guns and swords. In Japan he has worked with many great masters that very few martial artists have had the chance to do. He is a master of many martial arts and is highly respected in the Orient. Not many people know his great background and some of the rumours about this man are so ridiculous they’re not worth mentioning. He is a true Man of Honor and has always stood up for people who need help. I met Seagal in the late 60’s in Japan when he was already making a name for himself.

  6. Yeah, “politics” are what caused the cancellation. It had nothing to do with your attempted rape (and abuse) of Kayden Nguyen. This POS rapes and beats women (see Kelly Lebrock and Cheryl Schuman for examples), and then pretends to be a man of honor and someone who helps others. He’s a fraud in the martial arts, in his day to day life, and as a Buddhist. Anyone who falls for his lies is a sap.

    • dear David, what a load of crap. I don’t believe for a moment that Steven Seagal would need to rape or abuse a woman ever. He is a wealthy guy and his ex wives have all remained friends with him, He supports orphanages and is kind and generous; There will always be foolish women who want to be famous who target famous men and accuse them of wrong behaviour so they get their 15 minutes of fame.
      Then the media picks it up and runs with it. This kind of mud eventually falls away as its seen for what it is. Another fame seeking groupie trying to besmirch a good person. unfortunately it wasn’t picked up at the interview that she was like this. leave the guy alone.]

  7. I’m so happy that REELZ took over Lawman and True Justice.

    I can’t wait for Lawman to air. Hopefully True Justice will get the financing to make a third season. My fingers are crossed.

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