As a part of Wheel of Fortune’s “Southern Charm” week, the show used a particular image as a backdrop that didn’t sit well with viewers.
“Someone please tell me why @WheelofFortune has slaves in their ‘Southern Charm Week’ images?” one viewer wrote on Twitter along with a clip of the episode that appeared to show two African American women working as slaves outside a mansion.
— Joshua Itiola (@joshitiola) June 16, 2017
That single tweet went viral which prompted executive producer Harry Friedman to issue an apology, “We regret the use of those background image, and we will be replacing it moving forward on any rebroadcast,” he said in a statement to New York Daily News.
According to the Daily News, the backdrop was footage filmed in 2005 during an on-location shoot at Oak Alley Plantation in Vacherie, Louisiana.
The plantation does employ tour guides that wear period clothing like Annabelle-style hoop skirts, as seen by the people in the photo, said a spokeswoman from the plantation to the news outlet. She added that the plantation hired people of all skin colours for those roles.
“Southern Charm” week first aired in March but it was re-run last week and that’s when fans took notice of their backdrop.