After being accused of making her life on the set of Glee a “living hell,” actress Lea Michele has apologized to costar Samantha Ware and to anyone else whom she might have hurt.
“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,” Michele said in a lengthly statement on Instagram.
Michele’s apology comes after she posted a tweet about the killing of George Floyd with the hashtag Black Lives Matter. In response to this tweet, Ware expressed her outrage about how Michele treated her and other actors on the set of Glee.
“Remember when you made my first television gig a living hell,” Ware wrote. “I believe you told everyone that if you had the opportunity you would ‘shit in my wig!’ amongst other traumatic microaggressions that made me question a career in Hollywood.”
In her apology, Michele specifically says she doesn’t recall making the statement about the wig:
“While I don’t remember ever making this specific statement and I have never judged others by their background or color of their skin, that’s not really the point. What matters is that I clearly acted in ways which hurt other people.”
Michele’s apology was seen as half-hearted and did not appease those who consider her a bully—especially Ware. Ware tweeted her disbelief at Michele’s use of the word “perceived” in the Instagram apology.
“Perceived? Purcieved? Purse? Open your purse,” she wrote, including a link to a GoFundMe account for James Scurlock, a young Black man who was shot and killed at a George Floyd protest in downtown Omaha.
After Ware’s initial comments, Michele’s partnership with HelloFresh was terminated.
The company made a statement explaining, “HelloFresh does not condone racism nor discrimination of any kind. We are disheartened and disappointed to learn of the recent claims concerning Lea Michele.”