Lea Michele Responds to Accusations of ‘Disrespectful’ Behavior During Her Time on ‘Glee’

Former Glee star Lea Michele is responding to accusations of ‘disrespectful’ behavior towards her co-stars in a new interview with Interview Magazine. During the sit-down, she was asked about the accusations and how she’s navigating all of it as she makes her return to Broadway in Funny Girl. 

“I think these past two years have been so important for everybody to just sit back and reflect. I did a lot of personal reachouts. But the most important thing was for everybody to just take a step back,” said Michele – adding how grateful she is for the opportunity to apply what she’s learned ‘in a positive way.’ 

Starring as Fanny Brice in the iconic Broadway musical, Michele now understands how important her role as a cast member is – not just on-stage but off-stage as well. She wants to be seen as a leader in both areas and is taking the necessary steps to right some of the wrongs she made over the past 10+ years. 

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“At the end of the day, what matters the most is how you make people feel. And you have to put aside your feelings. The conversations that I’ve had behind the scenes with some people were incredibly healing and very eye-opening for me,” she said in the interview – adding she’s a different person now.

And that, she is. Lea Michele was in her early-20s when she was cast as Rachel Berry on Glee. Today, she’s 36 years old – turning 37 in August – and is now a married woman after tying the knot with Zandy Reich on March 9, 2019. She’s also a mother to a wonderful little boy, who was born in August 2020. 

She’s now viewing her role as Fanny Brice in Funny Girl as an opportunity to show people how she has changed. “When I got the call that I was going to play Fanny Brice, I said, “Okay, this could be really big for my career, but it’s also helpful to have this opportunity to introduce people to who I am now,” she said.

Lea Michele isn’t new to Broadway, having appeared in Les Misérables, Ragtime, Fiddler on the Roof, and Spring Awakening between 1995 and 2008 – before her time on Glee. She also made Broadway appearances in 2010 and 2019 but made her return last year as Beanie Feldstein’s replacement. 

What Did Former ‘Glee’ Cast Members Say About Lea Michele?

For those that don’t remember, many of Lea Michele’s former Glee co-stars started to criticize her over the way she treated them while on set. The comments started in 2020 when Samantha Ware – who starred as Jane Hayward – accused Lea of making her time on the show ‘a living hell.’ It only got worse.

Over the past few years, several other cast members have spoken out – including Amber Riley, Heather Morris, Naya Rivera, Chris Colfer, Kevin McHale, and Garrett Greer. They described her as being narcissistic, having a hard time sharing the spotlight, causing conflicts, and being unpleasant to work with.

And even in the wake of her being cast as Fanny Brice, several of those co-stars refused to support her in the role. Most notably, Colfer came forward and said his ‘day suddenly just got so full,’ when asked if he would be attending the Broadway show in New York. The saltiness continues, even 13 years later. 

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More recently, Lea Michele was brought under fire when she allegedly ‘pushed’ Sadie Sink out of the way so she can be center-stage while playing Charades with Jimmy Fallon and Tariq Trotter (AKA Black Thought). To be fair, she didn’t actually push her, and a lot of the comments against her carried no weight. 

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