13 Reasons Why newcomer Grace Saif has deleted her social media accounts after facing fierce backlash from fans following her Season 3 appearance. Saif had joined the cast of the controversial Netflix original series for its latest season, taking over the role of narrating the series as the investigation into the murder of Bryce Walker played out.
Less than two weeks after the Season 3 premiere, Saif, who portrays Ani Achola, entirely deleted her Instagram account, though fans are still able to follow it. All images that had once been on the account are now gone, along with her profile image and bio. Several of her 13 Reasons Why co-stars, including Bex-Taylor Klaus and Miles Heizer, still follow the account.
Saif’s Twitter account has also been switched to private, meaning that only those who had followed the account before she made the change can see her activity. Just like with her Instagram account, Saif has deleted her profile image, header, and bio.
The actress’ step away from social media comes after she was on the receiving end of bullying following the Season 3 premiere. Several social media users took to Twitter to criticize her role, seemingly unable to separate Saif from her character.
In the wake of the bullying, Said has gained plenty of support, however. After deleting her social media accounts, a number of celebrities and fans, including her co-stars, rallied around her with their support. Several even accused fans of missing the point of 13 Reasons Why, which deals heavily with bullying.
“One of the underlining themes in our show is to take care of each other. I’ve seen some pretty nasty things being said online, concerning the introduction of a new character,” Timothy Granaderos, who plays Montgomery de la Cruz on the series, wrote on Instagram. “Y’all are passionate & we love you for that, but PLEASE PLEASE try to be kind and respect the work of the talented actress/actor behind the character.”
Speaking to PEOPLE, Anne Winters, who plays Chloe Rice, called the backlash unwarranted.
“I think her role was very important this season, because, you know, you need someone that has the other side of Bryce, and we wouldn’t have really gotten to see that unless there was some sort of new character that was living with him,” she said. “That’s vital to the story to see and Ani is amazing. Grace who plays Ani is like the sweetest girl ever. I really loved her character this season.”0comments
Riverdale star Ashleigh Murray also came to Saif’s defense, stating that she doesn’t “blame her” for her taking a step out of the spotlight, as she has also dealt with bullying from fans, writing, “People have literally called me a monkey, trash, sloppy, classless darkie and told me to jump in an oven because....Josie kissed Archie.”
Seasons 1-3 of 13 Reasons Why are currently available for streaming on Netflix. The series has already been picked up for a fourth season, which will be its last. It is expected to premiere sometime next year.