Samantha Marie Ware is opening up about her claims that Lea Michele made her life a "living hell" on the set of Glee.
The actress said earlier this month that Michele had said she would "s--t in my wig," among other things.
Several of Michele's former co-stars have since spoken out against the Rachel Berry actress.
“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,” Ware dished to Variety.
“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.”
Ware explained that Michele once got confrontational with her in a group setting and went as far as threatening her job.
“When you’re shooting a scene, sometimes the camera is on you and sometimes it’s not, but you still have to be in the scene," Ware said.
"The camera wasn’t on us, so it’s not like we had to give a full throttle performance, but apparently, I was goofing around when the camera wasn’t on me, and she took that as me being disrespectful to her,” she continued.
“She waited until the scene was over and she stopped in the middle of the stage and did a ‘come here’ gesture, like how a mother does to their child.”
Ware alleges that when she did not walk to the center of the stage, Michele said “You need to come here right now.”
“I said ‘no,’ and that’s when she decided to threaten my job, and said she would call Ryan Murphy in to come and fire me,” Ware claimed.
“It’s scary. For the full week, I was thinking I’m probably going to get an email and I might not be able to do the last three episodes, or I might not be able to sing another song.”
Ware, who recently starred on CBS drama God Friended Me, said that she "tried to speak up" for herself, but Michele refused to allow her to.
“She told me to shut my mouth. She said I don’t deserve to have that job. She talked about how she has reign," Ware said.
"And here’s the thing: I completely understood that, and I was ready to be like, ‘This is your show. I’m not here to be disrespectful.’ But at that point, we were already past the respect and she was just abusing her power.”
While Glee alums Heather Morris and Amber Riley have said they do not think Lea is racist, they did not deny that she was difficult to work with.
Ware said that her situation “didn’t seem like that big of a deal” to others on set of the Fox drama series.
“I guess since it was such a common thing,” she explained.
“I remember the first day I actually spoke up and unfortunately no one did anything. They just shrugged it off, like ‘That’s her.’ No one was stopping these things, which is an issue because the environment was helping perpetuate this abuse.”
Ware has revealed that Michele has reached out to her after the initial tweet about her experience on the set of Glee, but Ware did not want to give out her personal information to her former co-star.
Ware said that Michele sent a letter to her representatives apologizing on the same day Michele took to Instagram to address the matter.
“When I tweeted the other day, it was meant to be a show of support for our friends and neighbors and communities of color during this really difficult time, but the responses I received to what I posted have made me also focus specifically on how my own behavior towards fellow cast members was perceived by them,” the Scream Queens star posted earlier this month.
“While I don’t remember ever making this specific statement and I have never judged others by their background or color of their skin, that’s not really the point. What matters is that I clearly acted in ways which hurt other people. … I apologize for my behavior and for any pain which I have caused.”
The scenario started when Michele posted to social media following the killing of George Floyd.
“Remember when you made my first television gig a living hell?!?! Cause I’ll never forget," Ware said in response on Twitter.
"I believe you told everyone that if you had the opportunity you would ‘s*** in my wig!’ amongst other traumatic microaggressions that made me question a career in Hollywood.”
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.