Former “Glee” star Samantha Ware says Lea Michele made her life ‘a living hell’
Earlier this week, former Glee star Samantha Marie Ware accused Lea Michele of being abusive on the set of the hit show years ago. This came after Michele tweeted support of #BlackLivesMatter in the wake of George Floyd’s murder. Ware says Michele made her first job in television “a living hell” and shared the verbal and mental abuse Michele subjected her to during her time at Glee. Now, Michele is issuing an apology.
“One of the most important lessons of the last few weeks is that we need to take the time to listen and learn about other people’s perspectives and any role we have played or anything we can do to help address the injustices that they face,” Michele says in a statement to PEOPLE.
LMAO REMEMBER WHEN YOU MADE MY FIRST TELEVISON GIG A LIVING HELL?!?! CAUSE ILL NEVER FORGET. I BELIEVE YOU TOLD EVERYONE THAT IF TOU HAD THE OPPORTUNITY YOU WOULD “SHIT IN MY WIG!” AMONGST OTHER TRAUMATIC MICROAGRESSIONS THAT MADE ME QUESTION A CAREER IN HOLLYWOOD… https://t.co/RkcaMBmtDA
— SAMEYAAAAAA (@Sammie_Ware) June 2, 2020
“When I tweeted the other day, it was meant to be a show of support for our friends and neighbors and communities of color during this really difficult time,” she says, referring to her tweet in support of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement.
“But the responses I received to what I posted have made me also focus specifically on how my own behavior towards fellow cast members was perceived by them,” she continues.
Michele says she doesn’t “remember” perpetuating the abuse Ware mentions, but admits that’s not the point. “What matters is that I clearly acted in ways which hurt other people,” she says. “Whether it was my privileged position and perspective that caused me to be perceived as insensitive or inappropriate at times or whether it was just my immaturity and me just being unnecessarily difficult, I apologize for my behavior and for any pain which I have caused. We all can grow and change and I have definitely used these past several months to reflect on my own shortcomings.”
Michele, who is due with her first child in a few short months, says she needs to “keep working” on bettering herself and to take accountability for her actions in order to set an example for her child: “I listened to these criticisms and I am learning and while I am very sorry, I will be better in the future from this experience.”
Unfortunately, Ware was not the only Black former colleague of Michele’s to accuse the actress of being awful on set.
I felt every one of those capital letters. ✊🏾
— yvette nicole brown (@YNB) June 2, 2020
Oh man. Oh man. Oh man. Oh man oh man. Current state of affairs bringing up so much trauma for us…. pic.twitter.com/QZUGsaVFU2
— Candice Patton (@candicepatton) June 2, 2020
did somebody say cockroaches? because that’s what she used to refer to the background as on the set of glee. but we grow up and we don’t stay background forever sooooo…
— Jeanté Godlock (@jeantegodlock) June 2, 2020
GIRL YOU WOULDNT LET ME SIT AT THE TABLE WITH THE OTHER CAST MEMBERS CAUSE “I DIDNT BELONG THERE” FUCK YOU LEA https://t.co/s4NoLdtqRs
— Dabier (@OfficialDabier) June 2, 2020
Here’s hoping Michele has truly learned from her past behavior, and isn’t just issuing PR lip service. Because, let’s face it, white people everywhere: we have A LOT of work to do.