Lea Michele is awkwardly seated behind Ziwe Fumudoh at US Open men’s final… months after the comedian’s comments over ‘rude’ Glee star’s racism scandal
Actress Lea Michele sat behind Ziwe Fumudoh at Sunday’s US Open, in the wake of the latter’s interview in which she discussed Lea’s racism scandal.
The Glee actress, 37, was joined by her husband Zandy Reich, 40, at Flushing Meadows where they watched the men’s final of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, while Ziwe, 31, was awkwardly placed in front of the couple in the stands.
Their appearance at the tournament comes just nine months after Ziwe, who was seated with pal Emily Ratajkowski, 32, interviewed Lea’s Glee co-star Amber Riley about allegations of racism on the show’s set.
In 2020, Glee star Samantha Ware accused Lea of having ‘racist tendencies’ – something Ziwe grilled Amber over in an awkward interview in December, leading to an awkward moment at the Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev face-off.
Adding further fuel to the fire, Watch What Happens Live producer Frank Costa tweeted an image of the seating and penned: ‘Lea Michele sitting behind Ziwe and Emily Ratajkowski at the US Open. I need a full breakdown of any & all interactions’.
Images taken of the foursome at the match, where Djokovic was victorious, did not show the duo speaking at any time and there is no confirmation of an exchange.
Scandal erupted in 2020, when Samantha made her accusations towards the show lead, claiming that she abused her on-set – in an echo of claims made by other stars.
The bullying allegations came to light after Lea took to social media to pay tribute to George Floyd, who was slain by police thus sparking worldwide protests and the origins of the Black Lives Matter Movement.
Taking to Twitter at the time, Lea wrote: ‘George Floyd did not deserve this. This was not an isolated incident and it must end’.
Samantha, who appeared as Jane Hayward on the show’s sixth season in 2015, swiftly hit back: ‘Remember when you made my first television gig a living hell?!?!…
‘Cause I’ll never forget… 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.’
After Lea vowed to ‘be better’ in a statement – yet insisted she did not remember any of the moments Samantha recalled – the latter gave an interview in response.
Speaking about the ‘traumatic microaggressions’, she said: ‘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.’
Following this, Ziwe spoke to Amber, who played Mercedes Jones on the Fox comedy-drama, about whether Lea was racist.
Ziwe said: ‘Now, speaking of getting down in the muck, you said that one of your famous coworkers wasn’t racist. Did you mean that she was?’
Amber took a few moments to try and figure out how to respond, before asking Ziwe politely to move on to the next question, adding: ‘I don’t know how to answer that.’
Amber then defiantly stated that she wasn’t sure what co-worker Ziwe was referring to because she had so many, when she played the video of Riley saying she didn’t think Lea Michele is racist.
Ziwe then asked: ‘Would you say that your famous coworker doesn’t see race and is, in fact, rude to all of her coworkers?’
Amber diplomatically replied: ‘I think that she would probably say she doesn’t see race. But as we discussed earlier, everyone does’.