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Drag Race legend Willam spills the tea on her ‘subhuman’ experience with Lea Michele on the set of Glee

Reiss Smith June 18, 2020
Willam and Glee star Lea Michele

Willam joined in criticism of Glee star Lea Michele. (Getty)

Drag Race icon Willam has shed some light on what went down between her and Lea Michele on the set of Glee.

After Lea Michele was accused of making life “a living hell” for Glee co-star Samantha Marie Ware at the start of June, William was one of many others to come out with their own stories.

“Lea treated me so subhuman I left the set of Glee,” she tweeted June 2.

Willam chose not to elaborate on her experiences at the time, but has now given some insight into what happened.

When asked by EW why she used the term “subhuman” to describe the way Michele treated her, Willam said the actor blatantly ignored her attempts to strike up conversation on the set of the musical series.

“If someone says something to you, the main response is usually to respond back,” she explained. “Even if it’s negative, if you say something usually the other person will say something back.”

When she spoke to Michele, “she didn’t say something back”, Willam said. Instead, she claimed, she simply sighed into her phone.

Willam didn’t want to co-opt Samantha Marie Ware’s story.

The Drag Race legend said that after she “chimed in”, she was accused of “co-opting people of colour’s stories”.

“I didn’t mean to do that,” she said, explaining that she was simply replying to her friend Alex Newell, who also starred on the show.

“I was literally talking to my friend Alex about a girl that we don’t like, who was on this show that we were both on too,” she said.

“I didn’t mean to co-opt, but I did chime in. I maybe shouldn’t have.”

Though Willam said the world doesn’t “need another white story being told”, she couldn’t resist a parting shot at Michele.

“Girl, she thought she was going to be a 30-something year-old Maria in West Side Story. Somebody needed to say something.”

Lea Michele apologises for Glee behaviour.

Since Samantha Marie Ware and other Black members of the Glee cast made allegations against Lea Michele, the actor has put out a statement apologising for the way her behaviour had been “perceived”.

She wrote: “While I don’t remember ever making this specific statement and I have never judged others by their background or colour of their skin, that’s not really the point, what matters is that I clearly acted in ways which hurt other people.”

Subsequently Ware gave an interview to Variety detailing the persistent mistreatment she experienced during her one-season stint on the show.

She said Michele subjected her to “the silent treatment, the stare-downs, the looks, the comments under her breath” and “the weird passive aggressiveness”.

Michele was also accused of threatening to have Ware fired because she was “goofing around when the camera wasn’t on me”.

“She told me to shut my mouth. She said I don’t deserve to have that job,” she said.

Ware said that she doesn’t believe Michele to be a racist, but believes she suffers from a symptom of living in this world in an industry that is tailored to white people.”

The actor said she received a letter of apology from Michele through her representatives earlier this month.

More: alex newell, Drag Race, Lea Michele, Samantha Marie Ware, Willam

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