Lea Michele: Glee star apologises 'for any pain caused'

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Lea Michele in November 2019Image copyright
Getty Images

Image caption

Michele’s other TV shows include Scream Queens and The Mayor

Glee star Lea Michele has apologised after a former co-star said she made her life “a living hell”.

Meal-kit firm HelloFresh cut ties with Michele after Samantha Ware accused her of “traumatic microaggressions” when they worked together on the show.

Ware made the comments on social media after Michele posted a tweet about George Floyd’s death.

“I apologise for my behaviour and for any pain which I have caused,” Michele posted on Instagram on Wednesday.

“We can all grow and change and I have definitely used these past several months to reflect on my own shortcomings.”

Michele acknowledged she “clearly acted in ways which hurt other people”.

In a three-page statement, the US actress said: “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 being unnecessarily difficult, I apologise for my behaviour.”

The actress, who played Rachel Barry on all six seasons of Glee, is currently expecting her first baby with husband Zandy Reich, and added she “wanted to be a real role model” for the child.

The death of Mr Floyd in Minneapolis on 25 May while in police custody has prompted widespread protests and unrest in the US.

Protests began after a video showed the 46-year-old African-American pinned to the ground by a white police officer kneeling on his neck.

“George Floyd did not deserve this,” wrote Michele on 29 May. “This was not an isolated incident and it must end. #BlackLivesMatter.”

Her tweet prompted a robust response from Ware, who accused Michele of conduct that had made her “question a career in Hollywood”.

Image copyright
Getty Images

Image caption

Samantha Ware appeared in Glee’s sixth and final season

“Remember when you made my first television gig a living hell?!?!” Ware wrote on Twitter. “Cause I’ll never forget.”

The actress went on to accuse Michele of stating publicly she would have defecated in Ware’s wig had she had the opportunity.

Ware played Jane Hayward in Glee’s sixth and final season and has since been seen in Netflix series What/If.

Another co-star, Amber Riley, appeared to acknowledge Ware’s claims by posting a gif of herself drinking tea on Twitter.

HelloFresh said they were “disheartened and disappointed” to learn of Ware’s claims about Michele, who was paid to promote its services on social media.

“HelloFresh does not condone racism nor discrimination of any kind,” it wrote on Twitter after another user questioned its association with the actress.

In Michele’s statement, she said she had “never judged others by their background or colour of their skin”.

Founded in 2011, HelloFresh is one of the largest meal-kit providers in the US and operates in a number of other countries.

Earlier this year the German company announced plans to expand its UK workforce by 50% to cope with demand.

Michele’s other shows include Scream Queens and The Mayor. She has also released two solo albums and a Christmas record.

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