After Gabrielle Union and Julianna Hough were let go as judges on reality competition show America’s Got Talent, Union made allegations about the unfortunate way she was reportedly treated on set. Just as it seemed the drama was resolving itself, Sofia Vergara and Heidi Klum were hired as their replacements. This ended up furthering the conflict somewhat, as Klum got involved in the debate and it came to light that Vergara and Union had been working on a project together. But how has this affected their relationship?
Gabrielle Union and Julianne Hough– both stars in their own right– served as judges on season 14 of America’s Got Talent along with Simon Cowell and Howie Mandel. Hough has not been very vocal about why she left, but Union alleges that she was let go after complaining about racist incidents behind the scene and about Cowell’s smoking indoors (which is illegal). Instead of fixing the problem, NBC executives thought it a better idea to fire and replace Union instead.
After news broke of the circumstances surrounding Union’s firing, other stars involved with the show made some inflammatory comments: Heidi Klum said, in response to Union’s allegations, “I can’t speak for her. I didn’t experience the same thing. To me, everyone treats you with the utmost respect. I’ve never seen anything that was weird or hurtful,” while Terry Crews also defended his time on the show. However, after realizing his mistake, Crews apologized publicly to Union, tweeting “I apologize. You have been through a lot in this business, and with that I empathize with the struggle toward fairness and equality in the workplace.”
@itsgabrielleu, I want you to know it was never my intention to invalidate your experience— but that is what I did. I apologize. You have been through a lot in this business, and with that I empathize with the struggle toward fairness and equality in the workplace.
— terry crews (@terrycrews) January 31, 2020
Last month, it was announced that Vergara, who is most known for playing Gloria on Modern Family would fill one of the vacancies left by Union and Hough along with supermodel Heidi Klum. Apparently, this created a rift between Vergara and Union. The two were reportedly developing a film that they would star in together, but the project has now been put on hold. According to the website Love B Scott, “[Gabrielle] loved where it was going, but she can’t see herself doing [the film] with her now.”
This is a tricky situation for sure– having a project cancelled is never an enviable position to be in, and being seen as having betrayed your friend, or played into a racist system, is just as bad, if not worse. However, Vergara has her reasons for taking the job, and it looks like she believes some good will come out of it: Vergara told fans over Instagram that she is excited to explore her new position and to represent the Latin-American community via the show.