Paramount’s “Anchorman 2” promotions tour has hit a snag, as Will Ferrell’s appearance as character Ron Burgundy on “SportsCenter” tomorrow has been canceled due to breaking news regarding Florida State football player Jameis Winston’s sexual assault case.
Florida attorney Willie Meggs has scheduled a news conference at 2 p.m. Thursday in his office to announce his findings in the high-profile case. Meggs said investigators have learned as much as they can about the December 2012 incident.
”We think we have exhausted all investigative tools,” he said.
Winston has led the Seminoles to the No. 1 ranking, and they will play for a conference title Saturday, with a shot at the national crown.
The quarterback is the leading candidate for the Heisman, and many voters are waiting to see whether Winston will be charged with a crime before casting their ballots. The deadline for Heisman ballots to be turned in is Dec. 9.
ESPN previously reported that DNA belonging to Winston was found in the underwear of the accuser. A lawyer for Winston has suggested that the star quarterback and the accuser had consensual sex. But the family of the victim has accused the 19-year-old of rape.
Meggs has said he wanted to make sure prosecutors completed a thorough investigation before making a final decision. He has also said several times that it’s up to prosecutors to determine whether there is a ”reasonable” chance of conviction.
The fact that Meggs has scheduled a news conference – as opposed to getting a warrant for Winston’s arrest – could be seen as a sign that he will not file charges.
Ron Burgundy's SportsCenter appearance Thursday has been canceled in light of breaking news out of Florida State regarding Jameis Winston.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) December 5, 2013
Marketing for Paramount’s highly sarcastic “Anchorman 2” has reached a fever pitch as the comedy nears its December 18 release. Product tie-ins have ranged from Jockey underwear to Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. Ferrell has appeared in character in commercials for the Dodge Durango and on an evening newscast in North Dakota.
Josh Krulewitz, ESPN’s vice president of communications, Tweeted that the network has no reschedule date for the “Anchorman” segment.
The first “Anchorman” was released in 2004 and grossed $90 million worldwide.
(Associated Press contributed to this report.)