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What Happened To Lea Michele After Glee?

With musical numbers galore, a wildly talented ensemble cast, and a laundry list of questionable plotlines, there's no television show quite like "Glee." Out of all the personalities featured in the series, only one character perfectly represents the controlled chaos of the show's narrative: Rachel Berry. Portrayed by actress Lea Michele, who got her start as a child actress on Broadway in shows like "Spring Awakening" and "Fiddler on the Roof," Rachel wants nothing more than to be a star, via Broadway World. Rachel craves an adoring crowd and the warmth of a spotlight, and she'll do pretty much anything to achieve her goals. Time and time again, Rachel demonstrates her formidable vocal talent and intimidating desire to be the constant center of attention.

Although the character had ups and downs, Rachel ultimately became the award-winning actress she always wanted to be. All things considered, it's a pretty satisfying end for the character, who, at times, was pretty hard to like. If you've ever wondered what Lea Michele is doing in this post-"Glee" world we live in, look no further. Let's take a look at what the actress has been up to ever since the show went off the air.

Scream Queens and other projects

After "Glee" wrapped up in 2015, Lea Michele decided to stick with the devil she knew, the Red Devil, via IMDb. Continuing her creative partnership with "Glee" co-creator Ryan Murphy, Michele joined the cast of his black comedy horror series "Scream Queens" as Hester Ulrich. At a glance, the role is a far cry from the fame-seeking Rachel Berry. Hester is a meek, death-obsessed sorority pledge who wears a cumbersome neck brace. However, looks can be deceiving. Once the Red Devil starts terrorizing campus, Hester and her twin brother, Boone (Nick Jonas), are revealed to be behind the attacks. Although different motives drive Hester and Rachel, the characters are similarly cutthroat. However, the series was ultimately canceled after just two seasons.

The actress also stars in "The Mayor," which stars Brandon Micheal Hall as Courtney Rose, an aspiring rapper who unexpectedly becomes the mayor after running on a whim. Michele plays Valentina Barella, Courtney's chief of staff, who does her best to help him adjust to being an elected official. You can also check out Michele as Olivia Anderson in "Same Time, Next Christmas," a made-for-TV movie that follows a holiday-centric romance.

Marriage and motherhood

Along with her successful career, Lea Michele has also seen significant changes in her personal life. Fans of "Glee" might recall Michele's on-screen romance with co-star Cory Monteith, who played quarterback Finn Hudson in the series, spilling over into real life. After meeting on set, the pair began dating in 2012 and stayed together until Monteith died from an accidental drug overdose in July 2013, via Us Weekly. After Monteith's passing, Michele found a second chance at love with Zandy Reich, a Philadelphia-born businessman, via People. According to the same outlet, Michele and Reich dated for two years before getting engaged in April 2018, and the lovebirds officially tied the knot the following year.

The newlyweds soon decided to grow their family. In August 2020, Michele and Reich celebrated the birth of their first child, a son named Ever Leo, via People. However, her pregnancy was not without its challenges. In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Michele explained her experience on the journey to motherhood. "I had a really intense pregnancy, I had a very intense journey of trying to get pregnant," Michele revealed. "We were pregnant during a pandemic dealing with those complications. And then my son was born, we were in quarantine for almost a year altogether with him, so it's been pretty wild. We're just now starting to get back into the swing of life again." Unfortunately, Michele was also making headlines for another, less pleasant reason around the same time.

Controversy and return to Broadway

According to "Glee" actress Samantha Marie Ware, who played Jane Hayward in the show's 6th season, Rachel Berry's immature, aggressive, and power-hungry attitude is an accurate reflection of what Lea Michele is really like when the cameras aren't rolling. As reported by CNN, Michele made Ware the victim of "traumatic microaggressions" during her time on the show, creating a toxic work environment that the latter called "a living hell."

"When I tried to speak up for myself, she told me to shut my mouth. She said I don't deserve to have that job," Ware told Variety in June 2020. "She talked about how she has reign. 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."

Michele's odious actions were confirmed by her costars, leading her to issue a public apology for her behavior (via People). Following the controversy, Michele has kept a low profile acting-wise. However, she's just landed a new role that not even Rachel Berry could tackle. People reported that Michele will replace Beanie Feldstein as leading lady Fanny Brice in the Broadway revival of "Funny Girl." Another thing Lea and her "Glee" character have in common is their love of Barbra Streisand, who originated the iconic role. Hopefully, Michele's return to the spotlight will proceed without incident.