In early June, Samantha Marie Ware accused Glee star Lea Michele of making her life a "living hell" while on the set of the FOX series. While Michele has since apologized, Ware's statements opened the floodgates for others to come forward with their own accusations about how poorly they have been treated by the Scream Queens actor. Now, Ware has opened up about why she chose to call out Michele for her alleged on-set behavior.
Ware explained to Variety that she opened up about her experience on the Glee set after she saw that Michele tweeted about George Floyd's death and the Black Lives Matter movement. "It shouldn’t have to take my tweet. When you tweet, 'Black lives matter,' that would mean you have an understanding of what that hashtag means, but it’s clear that it doesn’t. Does Lea even know what a microaggression is? I don’t know," Ware said. "All that her apology did was affirm that she hasn’t learned anything. Am I calling Lea a racist? No. Does Lea have racist tendencies? I think Lea suffers from a symptom of living in this world in an industry that is tailored to white people."
Ware originally claimed on Twitter that Michele made her time on Glee a "living hell." She accused the star of saying that she would "sh—t" in her wig "amongst other traumatic microaggressions." In her interview with Variety, Ware opened up even further about those claims, saying that she encountered this behavior as soon as she joined the cast of Glee in 2015. Ware recalled, "I knew from day one when I attempted to introduce myself. There was nothing gradual about it. As soon as she decided that she didn’t like me, it was very evident. It was after I did my first performance, that’s when it started -- the silent treatment, the stare-downs, the looks, the comments under her breath, the weird passive aggressiveness. It all built up."
After Ware's allegations emerged, Michele issued a statement to PEOPLE in which she said that she did not remember making any derogatory remarks but that her memory of what went down is "not really the point." Her statement read, "What matters is that I clearly acted in ways which hurt other people." The actor's message continued, "One of the most important lessons of the last few weeks is that we need to take the time to listen and learn about other people's perspectives and any role we have played or anything we can do to help address the injustices that they face."