Lea Michele's apology to black Glee castmates 'narcissistic', prompts fresh allegations of bullying

Lea Michele's apology to black Glee castmates 'narcissistic', prompts fresh allegations of bullying
Photo credit: Instagram/Lea Michele

Glee star Lea Michele's apology to black Glee castmates who accused her of racism and bullying has been criticised as "disingenuous" as well as prompting fresh allegations from other former coworkers. 

After Michele tweeted her support for the Black Lives Matter movement, Samantha Marie Ware hit back, claiming Michele made her time on Glee "a living hell" with her "traumatic microaggressions", including allegedly telling fellow actors she would defecate in Ware's wig if given the chance. 

Ware's response was the first of many claims of mistreatment by people who had worked with Michele across different stage and screen productions. 

After being dropped from her sponsorship deal with Hello Fresh, Michele made a statement apologising for "any pain she caused". 

In the lengthy Instagram post, Michele claimed she "didn't remember making the statement about Ware's wig" but admitted she had "clearly acted in ways that hurt other people" and acknowledged her "privileged position".  

However, Michele's response did little to quell the mounting outrage about her interactions with her colleagues, with more castmates speaking out against her. 

"You were nothing but a nightmare to me and fellow understudy cast members," Gerard Canonico, who worked with Michele on Broadway, replied on Instagram. 

"You made us feel like we didn’t belong there. I tried for years to be nice to you to no avail. Maybe actually apologise instead of placing the blame on how others 'perceive' you." 

Another man claiming to have worked as a background actor on Glee said Michele had referred to extras as "cockroaches" and once lifted a man up by his hair for being in her seat. 

Meanwhile, Ru Paul's Drag Race star William said she was treated "so subhuman" by Michele that she left the set of Glee. 

While some people defended Michele's apology, many didn't feel it was good enough, and had been written in a way that continued to absolve her of any real responsibility. 

"Your statement reminds me of Mean Girls quote: 'I'm sorry that people are so jealous of me, but I can't help it that I'm popular'," one Instagram comment read. 

"That's your apology? Here's my unfollow!" said another. 

"How a narcissist apologises," a third offered. 

Several commenters, including Canocino, claimed Michele had been deleting negative replies to her apology.