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Naya Rivera’s Dad Says Late Daughter Had ‘Trouble With’ Lea Michele on ‘Glee’ Set: ‘They Hated Each Other’

Naya Rivera's Dad Says Late Daughter Had 'Trouble With' Lea Michele on 'Glee' Set- 'They Hated Each Other' - 148
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Rehashing the past. Naya Rivera‘s father dished on his late daughter’s workplace dynamic with former costar Lea Michele in The Price of Glee.

Related: 'Glee' Cast: Where Are They Now?

The Investigation Discovery documentary dropped all three episodes on Monday, January 16, with appearances by George Rivera, former crew members and others who were close to the Glee cast throughout its six seasons on Fox. (The Ryan Murphy high school drama aired from 2009 to 2015.)

According to George, the 36-year-old Scream Queens alum was the only person Naya — who died at age 33 in July 2020 after an accidental drowning — had “trouble with” in the Glee cast.

“There was always a fight between them. Always. Everybody knew. Everybody saw it,” George alleged in the docuseries. “They hated each other but, at the same time, respected each other’s talent.”

Among the topics discussed in The Price of Glee were the allegations brought forward against Michele by former costar Samantha Ware in June 2020. At the time, Ware claimed that the Tony nominee made Glee “a living hell” after unleashing “traumatic microagressions” on set.

The Broadway vet issued an apology via Instagram at the time, asserting that she wanted to “take the time to listen and learn about other people’s perspectives” before addressing the situation publicly. “Whether it was my privileged position and perspective that caused me to be perceived as insensitive or inappropriate at times or whether it was just my immaturity and me just being unnecessarily difficult, I apologize for my behavior and for any pain which I have caused,” Michele, who was then pregnant with son Ever, wrote. “We all can grow and change and I have definitely used these past several months to reflect on my own shortcomings. … I listened to these criticisms and I am learning and while I am very sorry, I will be better in the future from this experience.”

Ware’s accusations sparked more of Michele’s former colleagues to come forward with stories of their own. The scandal resurfaced last year when the New York native was cast as Fanny Brice in the Broadway revival of Funny Girl, replacing Beanie Feldstein.

Related: Where Lea Michele Now Stands With Each of Her 'Glee' Costars: A Guide

“I have an edge to me. I work really hard,” the Spring Awakening star told The New York Times in a September 2022 profile. “I leave no room for mistakes. That level of perfectionism, or that pressure of perfectionism, left me with a lot of blind spots.”

Ahead of Glee‘s series finale, rumors swirled of on-set tension between Michele and Naya. In May 2014, Murphy shut down speculation about a feud — and confirmed to Extra that both women had “an open invitation” to remain on the series as long as they wanted.

The Step Up: High Water alum addressed her relationship with Michele in her 2016 memoir, Sorry Not Sorry. “One of the Glee writers once said that Lea and I were like two sides of the same battery and that about sums us up,” Naya wrote. “We are both strong willed and competitive — not just with each other but with everyone — and that’s not a good mixture.”

Related: Naya Rivera Through the Years: ‘Glee,’ Motherhood and More

Naya noted that Michele was “sensitive” and that they both fully embodied their characters — Santana Lopez and Rachel Berry, respectively. “I think Rachel — erm, I mean Lea — didn’t like sharing the spotlight,” the California native teased.

Before The Price of Glee debuted on Monday, several former Fox stars spoke out against the docuseries. Kevin McHale tweeted in December 2022 that no cast members were directly involved with the project, calling it “trash.” One month prior, Chord Overstreet slammed the “bulls–t” production.

“I think anybody that knows anything about that show and experienced it doesn’t have anything to do with that from what I know,” the 33-year-old actor said on the Elvis Duran Show. “We’re all really close and pretty much like family. Nobody knows anything about that. I think it’s a little bit of like just trying to get people to watch something.”

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