HelloFresh fires Lea Michele after ‘Glee’ costars accuse her of ‘traumatic’ behavior
“Glee” actress Samantha Marie Ware blasted her former costar Lea Michele on Monday for allegedly making her time on the show “a living hell” and subjecting her to “traumatic microaggressions” on set. And the swift fallout cost Michele at least one job.
After Michele tweeted a tribute to George Floyd with the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter, Ware called Michele out in all caps, garnering support from fellow “Glee” alum Alex Newell and other industry members in the reply section.
“George Floyd did not deserve this,” Michele wrote on May 29. “This was not an isolated incident and it must end. #BlackLivesMatter.”
On Monday night came Ware’s scathing takedown:
“LMAO REMEMBER WHEN YOU MADE MY FIRST [TELEVISION] GIG A LIVING HELL?!?!” she tweeted. “CAUSE ILL NEVER FORGET. I BELIEVE YOU TOLD EVERYONE THAT IF [YOU] HAD THE OPPORTUNITY YOU WOULD ‘S— IN MY WIG!’ AMONGST OTHER TRAUMATIC MICROAGRESSIONS THAT MADE ME QUESTION A CAREER IN HOLLYWOOD.”
George Floyd did not deserve this. This was not an isolated incident and it must end. #BlackLivesMatter— Lea Michele (@LeaMichele) May 29, 2020
By Tuesday afternoon, food company HelloFresh had cut ties with Michele after learning of Ware’s allegations. In January, HelloFresh announced it had partnered with Michele to promote its meal kits.
“HelloFresh does not condone racism nor discrimination of any kind,” the brand tweeted. “We are disheartened and disappointed to learn of the recent claims concerning Lea Michele. We take this very seriously, and have ended our partnership with Lea Michele, effective immediately.”
HelloFresh does not condone racism nor discrimination of any kind. We are disheartened and disappointed to learn of the recent claims concerning Lea Michele. We take this very seriously, and have ended our partnership with Lea Michele, effective immediately.— HelloFresh US (@HelloFresh) June 2, 2020
Michele and Ware starred together in the final season of “Glee,” which saw Michele’s Rachel Berry recruit Ware’s Jane Hayward for a spot in the high school show choir. A representative for Michele did not respond Tuesday to the L.A. Times’ multiple requests for comment.
In less than 20 hours, Ware’s tweet had amassed more than 400,000 likes and 5,000 replies, including words of approval from Newell, Oscar-winning director Matthew A. Cherry, “Community” alum Yvette Nicole Brown, “The Flash” star Candice Patton and “Lucifer” star Lesley-Ann Brandt.
Beyoncé, Viola Davis, Cynthia Erivo, Taylor Swift and other celebs are paying tribute to George Floyd, the Minneapolis man who died from police brutality.
Newell, who played choir member Unique Adams on “Glee,” thanked “The Book of Mormon” alum Ware for reminding him that he still followed Michele on Twitter (so that he could unfollow her) and said the all-caps declaration “felt like claps.”
In response to a skeptic who asked Newell why he took a photo with Michele at his Broadway show and returned for the sixth season of “Glee,” Newell hit back:
“She was there I was being polite!!” he wrote. “Like I was with anyone that came to see my show! Also I know youre not talking about the season I wasn’t in... until I had to ask to come back so I could pay my bills... since I was released mid season five... while being a series regular!”
I’m gonna say this one time... when my friends goes through something traumatic I also go through it... that’s what friendship is... and if you can’t understand that then you’re part of the problem... and that’s on PERIODT! And I mean that for both sides of this coin!— Alex Newell (@thealexnewell) June 2, 2020
Later on his own Twitter feed, Newell doubled down on his remarks, writing, “I’m gonna say this one time... when my friends goes through something traumatic I also go through it... that’s what friendship is... and if you can’t understand that then you’re part of the problem... and that’s on PERIODT! And I mean that for both sides of this coin!”
Amber Riley, who starred alongside Michele in the original cast of “Glee” as vocal powerhouse Mercedes Jones, didn’t reply to Ware’s post directly, but tweeted a pointed gif of herself sipping from a mug — which Newell retweeted.
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