Celebrity

Lea Michele to Replace Beanie Feldstein in “Funny Girl”

Photo Illustration by Luis G. Rendon/The Daily Beast/Getty

Lea Michele as “Funny Girl”.  Let’s start from the beginning. After the tragic killing of George Floyd in 2020, Glee actress Lea Michele took to her twitter to write “George Floyd did not deserve this. This was not an isolated incident and it must end. #BlackLivesMatter.”

This prompted ‘Glee’ actress Samantha Ware to sharply tweet back “LMAO, 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 SH*T in my wig- amongst other traumatic micro-aggressions that made me question a career in Hollywood…”

Alas, more of Michele’s past co-stars began coming out and detailing the actress’S nasty and racist behavior, including the late Naya Rivera.”I think Rachel- erm, I mean Lea – didn’t like sharing the spotlight,” she wrote in her 2016 book Sorry Not Sorry.  And what’s worse? Not a single cast member came to Michele’s defense after numerous people came forward; it was the opposite.  Support was offered to any and all people who felt victimized or oppressed by Lea Michele.

Fast forward to 2022. “Funny Girl” on Broadway currently stars Beanie Feldstein as the leading role of Fanny Bryce (and Jane Lynch as Mrs. Brice). While Feldstein’s reviews were subpar, this was a dream role for her – and she more than pulled it off. She took to her instagram yesterday to post the following about her early departure:

“Playing Fanny Brice on Broadway has been a lifelong dream of mine, and doing so for the last few months has been a great joy and true honor. Once the production decided to take the show in a different direction, I made the extremely difficult decision to step away sooner than anticipated.”

Feldstein was originally set to depart the show in September, and now will have her last curtain call in July. Her reps would not comment on what she meant by ‘taking the show in a different direction’, but many are speculating. Did it have anything to do with her successor?  Jane Lynch, who plays Mrs. Brice, was also supposed to stay on past September, but now will be departing before Lea Michele takes over the role (Lynch will be replaced by Tovah Feldshuh). If anyone was hoping for a ‘Glee’ reunion, they will be sorely disappointed. Again, many have speculated… does Lynch’s early departure have anything to do with Michele joining the cast?

People in the Broadway community have also expressed frustration with the new casting:

 

Reps for Michele have yet to make a statement. While Michele did apologize in 2020 amid the bullying and racist  allegations, many were not satisfied. At what point do we move on? Should Michele not have been cast in the role if she was “canceled?” Was she even canceled at all?!  These are questions we are left pondering in 2022. Lea Michele will take over as Fanny Brice officially on September 25th, 2022.

Leandro Cano Couture FW22

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Lauren is a New York City based reporter, podcaster and host, with a focus on pop culture news and true crime. She is currently a writer and reporter for Pop Style TV, NickiSwift.com, and Grunge.com. Lauren is also the host and producer of the investigative podcast titled, “Corruption: What Happened to Grant Solomon.” She hopes to reveal the truth behind an alleged cover-up and accidental death of an 18-year-old boy in Tennessee. Lauren is the creator and host of the pop culture, news & crime podcast, “Lauren Interviews.” She has featured interviews with public figures like Joe Exotic, actors like Kyra Sedgwick and Alec Baldwin, plus real housewives like Luann de Lesseps. Lauren previously worked for WABC RADIO, writing news briefs and articles pertaining to entertainment, crime, and politics while also serving as on-air talent. Lauren also hosted a wellness show on WOR Radio in NYC, and then teamed up with 98 Degrees’ Jeff Timmons for a podcast called “Millennials Revealed.” Some true crime highlights in Lauren's orbit: After a woman named Julia Wandelt came forward claiming to be missing child Madeline McCann in 2023, Lauren went viral for getting the first video interview with her spokesperson, Fia Johansson; discussing whether or not a DNA test was underway. Lauren also revealed brand new interviews and information regarding the deaths of actor Brittany Murphy and her husband Simon Monjack in 2020, which lead to her also being featured on VICE TV and Law & Crime. Lauren also made headlines after an exclusive interview with the fiancé of Aaron Carter just days after his tragic death, while also covering Carter’s death as breaking news on Lawrence Jones Cross Country (Fox News). Lauren also reported on the tragic death of Matthew Perry as both breaking news, then as a tribute while on Fox News as a guest. Her interviews and reporting have been covered by People, EW, The Today Show, Perez Hilton, Page Six, Elle Magazine and more.
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