LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Arnold Schwarzenegger on Thursday put his upcoming Hollywood projects on hold following the scandal over a secret child he fathered 13 years ago with his housekeeper.
The 63-year-old former California governor and “Terminator” star has told his agents to halt plans to resume his movie career so that he can deal with “personal matters”, according to a statement.
“Governor Schwarzenegger is focusing on personal matters and is not willing to commit to any production schedules or timelines. This includes ‘Cry Macho,’ the ‘Terminator’ franchise and other projects under consideration. We will resume discussions when Governor Schwarzenegger decides,” said a statement issued by his spokesman.
Schwarzenegger, who ended his second term as California governor in January, had been working on at least three entertainment projects, including a new “Terminator” movie in which he was due to star,
In the movie drama “Cry Macho”, due to start shooting in September, he was cast as a retired horse trainer.
He had also announced plans to appear as the central character in a comic-book inspired animated TV series called “The Governator.”
But the former action movie hero has been scorned and ridiculed since revealing on Monday that he had a child out of wedlock that was kept secret from his wife, Maria Shriver, and their four children.
The U.S. media has since named the woman as a 50 year-old former housekeeper at Schwarzenegger’s Los Angeles home, and the child as a 13 year-old boy.
Schwarzenegger and Shriver, a member of the Kennedy political family and a former TV journalist, announced last week that they had separated earlier this year after 25 years of marriage.
The news of a secret son follows claims in 2003 that the former body-builder turned actor had groped or sexually harassed a number of women in the past.
It has made Schwarzenegger the target of scathing jokes and gave him a new nickname -- the Sperminator.
Hollywood producers had said earlier this week they did not think the negative fallout would affect Schwarzenegger’s plans to resume his acting career after seven years in politics.
Reporting by Jill Serjeant, editing by Dan Whitcomb