Michelle Trachtenberg: Joss Whedon wasn’t allowed to be alone with me on ‘Buffy’

Michelle Trachtenberg poses in a patterned dress and dark eye makeup
Michelle Trachtenberg is among the actors accusing director Joss Whedon of misconduct.
(Richard Shotwell / Invision/Associated Press)

“Buffy the Vampire Slayer” actress Michelle Trachtenberg claims showrunner and creator Joss Whedon was not allowed to be alone with her on set.

After fellow “Buffy” alum Charisma Carpenter and DC Comics star Ray Fisher accused Whedon of misconduct, Trachtenberg, 35, came forward Thursday with her own allegations regarding the “Avengers” filmmaker.

For the record:

12:52 p.m. Feb. 13, 2021This story incorrectly states that Ray Fisher declined to reprise his role as Cyborg in the upcoming DC film “The Flash.” In January, WarnerMedia announced “The Flash” would be “moving on” without Fisher after the actor said he would not participate in any projects associated with Walter Hamada, the president of DC Films.

Responding to “Buffy” star Sarah Michelle Gellar’s public rebuke of Whedon, Trachtenberg accused the writer and director of inappropriate, “very bad” behavior, though she did not specify his alleged actions. From 2000 to 2003, the “Ice Princess” star played Gellar’s onscreen sister in the hit fantasy series.


“I am brave enough now as a 35 year old woman....To repost [Gellar’s statement]. Because. This must. Be known,” Trachtenberg wrote on Instagram. “As a teenager. With his not appropriate behavior....very. Not. Appropriate. So now. People know. What Joss. Did.

“The last. Comment I will make on this. Was. There was a rule. Saying. He’s not allowed in a room alone with Michelle again,” she later updated her caption.

Reps for Whedon did not immediately comment further when reached Friday by The Times.

Trachtenberg’s allegations come a day after Carpenter accused him of retaliatory behavior and firing her from the “Buffy” spinoff “Angel” after she became pregnant. The actress portrayed high school mean girl-turned-ally Cordelia Chase in both series.

“Joss Whedon abused his power on numerous occasions while working together on the sets of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel,” Carpenter tweeted Wednesday.

“While he found his misconduct amusing, it only served to intensify my performance anxiety, disempower me, and alienate me from my peers,” she added. “The disturbing incidents triggered a chronic physical condition from which I still suffer. It is with a beating, heavy heart that I say I coped in isolation and, at times, destructively.”


Carpenter spoke up in solidarity with Fisher, who previously accused the “Justice League” co-writer of exhibiting “gross, abusive, unprofessional, and completely unacceptable” behavior while working on the 2017 film. In the DC Extended Universe, Fisher portrayed Victor Stone, a.k.a. Cyborg — a role he recently declined to reprise for the upcoming DC project “The Flash.”

Carpenter also revealed that she participated in WarnerMedia’s “Justice League” investigation of Whedon and producers Geoff Johns and Jon Berg because she trusted Fisher as a “person of integrity who is telling the truth.” That probe was completed in December, and “remedial action has been taken” as a result, according to Warner Bros. (Fisher maintains that “[t]here are still conversations that need to be had and resolutions that need to be found.”)

Shortly after Carpenter released her statement backing Fisher’s account, Gellar — who played the titular teen on “Buffy” — expressed a desire to sever her ties with Whedon while throwing her support behind his accusers.

Standing with ‘Justice League’s’ Ray Fisher, ‘Angel’ star Charisma Carpenter has accused showrunner Joss Whedon of abusing his power on her TV series.

Feb. 10, 2021

“While I am proud to have my name associated with Buffy Summers, I don’t want to be forever associated with the name Joss Whedon,” Gellar shared Wednesday on Instagram. “I am more focused on raising my family and surviving a pandemic currently, so I will not be making any further statements at this time. But I stand with all survivors of abuse and am proud of them for speaking out.”

In further response to Gellar’s remarks, Trachtenberg wrote, “What [Whedon] did was very bad. But we win. By surviving!”

Times staff writer Nardine Saad contributed to this report.