TV Show Casts That Couldn't Stand Each Other

People from all walks of life are forced to put on their happy faces when it's time to go to work, regardless of how they might feel about their colleagues. When you're an actor and your work entails creating an emotional connection with said colleagues, the whole happy face thing becomes a lot more difficult — especially when it comes to television. TV show casts usually work long hours and often have to operate on a tight schedule, so when a particularly tricky or tense scene comes along, frayed tempers are to be expected. Sometimes those frayed tempers lead to raised voices, and raised voices have been known to spark full-blown fistfights (more on that shortly), but viewers are rarely aware of any behind the scenes ruckus.

A true actor is someone who can work opposite a person they hate and still turn in a top performance. Letting personal feelings derail a project isn't very professional, which is why most actors choose to suck it up and smile after an on-set falling out. Many simply shake hands and go their separate ways after wrap day, but there are some who prefer to get everything off their chest. Plenty of actors have opened up about not liking their castmates, and the size of some of the shows that have been mentioned may surprise you. From classic sitcoms and beloved sci-fi shows to cult comedies and huge dramas, the following TV shows' casts really couldn't stand each other.

Grey's Anatomy

In October 2006, co-stars Patrick Dempsey and Isaiah Washington reportedly got into a harsh exchange of words while filming a scene on the set of Grey's Anatomy. The fight became infamous, as Washington allegedly used a slur in reference to their gay co-star, T.R. Knight. Washington vehemently denied the reports, most infamously in the press room at the January 2007 Golden Globes, where he bluntly said to reporters, "No, I did not call T.R. a f*****." Washington was ultimately fired from the show a few months later. Knight later told Ellen DeGeneres that the feud inspired him to officially come out as gay.

Years later, in 2014, Washington returned to Grey's Anatomy for a guest spot. Apparently, time heals (most?) wounds.

Grey's Anatomy (Again)

After Isaiah Washington was fired from the show, the set of Grey's Anatomy had a new villain to contend with: co-star Katherine Heigl. The actress created tension beyond the extreme when she publicly removed herself from Emmy consideration the year after she won the award, blaming the writers for not giving her enough good material. Rumors that she was a diva on set and difficult to work with continued up until she left the show about a year and a half later. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter in 2014, Grey's creator Shonda Rhimes seemed to imply that it was Heigl who catalyzed Rhimes' "no a**holes" policy on the set of her follow-up hit, Scandal. "There are no Heigls in this situation...I don't put up with bulls*** or nasty people. I don't have time for it," Rhimes said.

Years later, in an interview with Howard Stern (via Vanity Fair), Heigl spoke about the controversy, saying, "I went in to [see] Shonda and said, 'I'm so sorry. That wasn't cool, and I should not have said that.' And I shouldn't have said anything publicly. But at the time, I didn't think anyone would notice ... I just quietly didn't submit and then it became a story, and I felt I was obligated to make my statement, and [I should have just said], 'Shut up, Katie.'"

Yeah, probably.

Glee

In 2014, TMZ reported that Glee co-stars Naya Rivera and Lea Michele got into a legitimate tiff while filming an episode of their hit musical-comedy series. To this day, in a true case of Diva Said, Diva Said, nobody knows what the fight was actually about. TMZ's sources for the late Rivera alleged that the actress was ticked off over Lea Michele's bad behavior on set, and went to the producers to complain. Then, when Michele found out about it, she stormed off in a fit. TMZ's Michele sources, however, claimed that pretty much the opposite happened. Whatever happened, if TMZ is taking time out to report on it, you know it must have been pretty rough.

During a 2017 interview on E! News, series creator Ryan Murphy finally addressed the feud, saying, "I feel like in the case of that show [Glee], that show was just a s**tstorm of difficulty, largely because, what do you do when you're 18 years old or 19 years old and you wake up one day and you're world famous? I think a lot of that was informed by their youth and being involved in a phenomenon."

He continued, "And I know for a fact that they [Lea and Naya] admired each other's work, 'cause I directed them both in scenes."

Moonlighting

If you were to look up the term "Miserable TV Set" in the Hollywood dictionary, odds are good that Moonlighting would pictured next to the definition. The '80s dramedy, starring Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis, was fraught with tension from day one and lasted until the very end of the show's fifth and final season, according to a 1989 article in People. Among the causes: Willis' blossoming film career, catalyzed by 1988's Die Hard; and Shepherd's pregnancy in 1987 that caused the production schedule to fall out of place. "Willis ... suddenly cared a lot 'about not working, about getting out of work, leaving work early,'" a source told People at the time. Willis also threw a loud, violent tantrum on set after the production schedule "threatened to cut into a planned afternoon getaway." Great!

Roseanne

A battle over creative control erupted during the first season of Roseanne, one that the eponymous star ultimately won. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Roseanne Barr revealed how she forced ABC to part with writer and creator, Matt Williams. "I said, 'I want to break the contract, I quit,'" Barr said. "They told me Matt would be out by show 13... Thirteen has always been my lucky number. So I ate s*** until then." 

After cleaning out his desk, Williams spoke to the Los Angeles Times, claiming that his dismissal was "symptomatic of an industry disdain for writers in general." Those words would ring true in the years that followed, as Barr continued to feud with her writers.

Barr got pretty candid when Entertainment Weekly had a "Roseanne family reunion" in 2008, and she didn't hold back when it came to her "egocentric" team of writers. The actor revealed that she wouldn't even refer to them by name, using numbers she'd allocated instead. "The writers did not think it was funny," Amy Sherman-Palladino (who went on to create Gilmore Girls) said. "Anytime you tell someone, 'I'm not going to learn your name, here's your number,' you're diminishing their worth." When Roseanne was renewed for a belated 10th season in 2017, Barr claimed that all the drama was so two decades ago. "I don't want to fight no more," she told Entertainment Weekly. Yet, she just couldn't stay out of trouble — Barr was sacked the following year after a racist tweet.

Desperate Housewives

In 2005, at the peak of the success of ABC's primetime soap, Desperate Housewives, the principal castmembers reportedly got into it at a shoot for the cover of Vanity Fair. According to PeopleABC told Vanity Fair that Teri Hatcher couldn't get first dibs on wardrobe or take over the shoot, suggesting that the rest of the cast wasn't happy with her behavior on set. Hatcher ultimately arrived at the set early, setting off a chain in events that allegedly ended with Marcia Cross storming off the shoot and Hatcher crying on the phone. The feud between Hatcher and the rest of the Desperate Housewives cast reportedly continued throughout the show's seven-season run.

Desperate Housewives (Again)

In 2010, star Desperate Housewives star Nicollette Sheridan sued ABC for wrongful termination and battery after claiming she was hit on the head by the show's creator, Marc Cherry, and subsequently written off the show for complaining about the incident.

The suit went to trial in 2012, during which Cherry testified (via E! News) that he tapped Sheridan on the head and the tap was only done to help demonstrate how Sheridan's scene should play out. A judge ultimately declared a mistrial after the jury became deadlocked; subsequent lawsuits were tossed out, as well.

As an aside, Cherry's testimony also seemed to confirm Hatcher's feud with the rest of the cast. At one point, he recalled an incident in which Hatcher and Sheridan were fighting on set. "Nicollette pulled me aside and told me that Teri Hatcher was the meanest woman in the world because of how she was acting," Cherry testified. Incidentally, Cherry also testified that co-stars Eva Longoria and Felicity Huffman were "relieved" when Sheridan was written off the show. So, who knows?

Beverly Hills, 90210

It's not uncommon for co-stars to get into disagreements during the long hours that TV shows demand, but those disagreements rarely get physical. That's exactly what happened on the set of Beverly Hills, 90210 when Shannen Doherty and Jennie Garth got into what was described as a "fist fight" by co-star Tori Spelling. "I remember I could hear the door fly open and everyone screaming and crying," Spelling recalled on Celebrity Lie Detector (via Entertainment Tonight). "That's when I was told the boys just had to break up Jennie and Shannen." A teary Spelling admitted to being instrumental in getting Doherty the boot, something she deeply regretted. "I felt like I was a part of something, a movement, that cost someone their livelihood," she said. "...Was she a horrible person? No. She was one of the best friends I ever had."

When Garth (who played the jaded Kelly Taylor on 90210) appeared on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen in 2019, she confirmed that her spat with Doherty (who portrayed Midwestern transplant Brenda Walsh) was all in the past. "We were young and so stupid," Garth said, recalling the time they "took it outside" after Doherty pulled her skirt up. "We're just both very strong Aries women [who] don't back down no matter what." Garth told Cohen that Spelling was often the "peacekeeper" when she and Doherty clashed. "She loved us both." All three have portrayed fictionalized versions of themselves in Fox's mockumentary-style reunion show BH90210.

American Idol

During a 2012 audition episode in North Carolina, newly minted American Idol judges Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey (who already has a plethora of celeb enemies) entered a war of words after disagreeing about a contestant's performance, TMZ reported at the time. TMZ actually obtained footage of the disagreement, which showed Minaj firing a number of expletive insults at Carey. "Every time you take a shot at me I'ma take it back, and if you gotta f****** problem then handle it..." Minaj says at one point. "I told them I'm not f*****' putting up with her f*****' highness over there." Much to the surprise of no one, Carey and Minaj quit the show after one season. In 2015, Carey reflected on her one-season stint on Idol, calling it the worst experience of her life.

Criminal Minds

Fans of CBS's show Criminal Minds were shocked in August 2016 when news broke that the series' star Thomas Gibson would not be returning as Agent Aaron Hotchner. It turns out that Gibson had initially been suspended for two episodes after getting into an altercation with and kicking writer and producer Virgil Williams. Eventually, however, he was written out of the show, on which he'd appeared on for 11 seasons, for good.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the incident occurred during an episode that Gibson was actually directing; after a disagreement between Gibson and Williams, tempers flared, resulting in the fateful kick. THR further explains that this wasn't the first time Gibson had lashed out at a coworker; he allegedly pushed an assistant director for the show a few years earlier, and ended up in mandated anger management classes. It also seems that Gibson had a contentious relationship with his co-star Shemar Moore; in August 2016, Vulture reported on a seemingly shady Instagram video that Moore posted right after Gibson was fired and then deleted, saying, "I'll just say this: I believe in karma."

"I feel like it took years to make a good reputation and a minute to damage it," Gibson later told People of the incident.

Community

The irony of the show's title couldn't have been lost on those who worked on NBC's beloved but highly troubled show, Community. The community college set comedy made unwanted headlines in 2012 when star Chevy Chase was accused of using the N-word on set, causing a "commotion," according to DeadlineChase reportedly used the slur in protest after being shown some dialogue he didn't agree with (his character, wet wipe tycoon Pierce Hawthorne, was a hopeless bigot), suggesting that he'd be asked to use it in reference to his Black co-stars the way things were going. The cast didn't appreciate his reasoning, however, and he promptly apologized. Joel McHale (Jeff Winger) would later tell Howard Stern that Chase claimed Richard Pryor permitted him to use the n-word.

Showrunner Dan Harmon clashed with Chase on numerous occasions. Speaking to The New Yorker in 2018, Harmon recalled a time he had to apologize to Donald Glover (Troy Barnes) after "a particularly rough night of Chevy's non-P.C. verbiage." 

What did Chase say, exactly? According to Harmon, Chase told Glover that "People think you're funnier because you're Black." Harmon believes that Chase was threatened by the clearly talented Glover, who refused to take the bait. "I just saw Chevy as fighting time," the actor and musician said. "A true artist has to be okay with his reign being over. I can't help him if he's thrashing in the water. But I know there's a human in there somewhere — he's almost too human."

Charmed

When Shannen Doherty left Charmed in mysterious circumstances in 2001, she left a trail of rumors about beef with co-star Alyssa Milano. The actor (who portrayed Prudence "Prue" Halliwell, the oldest Charmed One) told Entertainment Tonight that she decided to split because she was totally over on-set feuds. "There was too much drama on the set and not enough passion for the work," she said. "I'm 30 years old and I don't have time for drama in my life anymore." But did she really walk away, or was she asked to leave? In 2013, Milano re-stoked the fires somewhat when she appeared on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen (via HuffPost). "I don't know if [Doherty] got fired, we never really found out what happened," she said. "There were definitely some rough days."

When Milano spoke to E! News four years later, she revealed that she and Doherty privately reconnected via Twitter after the latter was diagnosed with breast cancer. "I think that what she has gone through, [and] motherhood in my life, I think it just changes people," Milano said. "I'm so happy that she's feeling well. I prayed for her every day that she would feel well and I can't wait to see her." Doherty was in remission at the time, though sadly, she would receive a second breast cancer diagnosis in 2019. The actor said that she was focusing on looking after herself and "embracing every day" in a February 2020 Instagram update.

Sex and the City

Sex and the City co-stars Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Cattrall reportedly fell out in 2004 when Cattrall discovered she was being paid much less than SJP for the hit show's final season. Parker later played down their beef in an interview with Elle, claiming it was fabricated"I don't think anybody wants to believe that I love Kim," she said. "I adore her." She did, however, acknowledge that there was some friction when she spoke to Marie Claire in 2010, blaming the show's long hours. "There are times when all of us have been sensitive, and sometimes feelings get hurt." Parker seemed ready to move on, but Cattrall had other plans.

When Piers Morgan interviewed Cattrall in 2017 (via Entertainment Tonight), she said that she's never been friends with her Sex and the City co-stars and that Parker in particular "could have been nicer" to her. SJP's attempts at niceness blew up in her face when Cattrall's brother tragically died the following year — when Parker sent her condolences, Cattrall lashed out in a fiery Instagram post. "Let me make this VERY clear (if I haven't already)," she said. "You are not my family. You are not my friend." Cattrall went on to accuse Parker of exploiting her tragedy to further her "'nice girl' persona." Yikes. Needless to say, Cattrall isn't interested in returning for a third Sex and the City movie. "Never," she told the Daily Mail in 2019. "It's a no from me."

Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

According to E! Online, actress Janet Hubert was fired from the role of Aunt Vivian after the third season of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air due to "creative differences"; actress Daphne Maxwell Reid was quickly brought in as a replacement.

What led to the shocking cast swap? Star Will Smith shed a little light on the backstage drama in a 1993 radio interview, saying, "I can say straight up that Janet Hubert wanted the show to be The Aunt Viv of Bel Air Show...No matter what, to her I'm just the Antichrist." Smith's co-star Alfonso Ribeiro also riffed on the feud during a comedy set (via E! Online), saying bluntly, "There were days when we were all on the set and she would literally go off on people...We felt like, when we were doing The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, that we were a family...She, at that point, ruined that, and she made it very difficult for us to work, and unfortunately she was then fired."

For her part, Hubert denied any wrongdoing in a 2016 interview on The Real. "Janet Hubert was never difficult on that set. Janet Hubert was so professional, it wasn't even funny," she said on the talk show (via Us Weekly). "I think Will simply needed to win, and I think sometimes when you get caught up in a lie and those things never happened. She never left the set. I never left the set. We got along great.

Two and a Half Men

Two and a Half Men star Charlie Sheen appeared to burn bridges with creator Chuck Lorre in 2011, going on a bizarre series of rants that led to his firing from the popular sitcom. The hard-partying actor seemed to take a joke that his boss made about him personally (Lorre, who lives a healthy lifestyle, said he would be mad if Sheen outlived him) and proceeded to trash him to numerous outlets. He called Lorre a "clown" on The Alex Jones Show (via People), and would later brand him "a stupid, stupid little man and a p**** punk" when TMZ caught up with him. "That piece of s*** took money out of my pocket," Sheen added. "You can tell him one thing — I own him."

It probably won't surprise you to learn that Sheen didn't let it go. Six years after he was sacked, he once again went off on Lorre, calling him a "ridiculous impostor" during an interview with KIIS 1065's Kyle and Jackie O. "Chuck Lorre, I hope you're listening," Sheen said (via Page Six). "Hey Chuck: Suck my f****** butt." Sheen did, however, admit that he was "regretful" about bashing his replacement, Ashton Kutcher. "I was stupidly mean to him."

Sheen expressed more uncharacteristic remorse when he spoke to Australia's Today show in 2018 (via the Daily Mail). Asked if he'd made up with Lorre yet, Sheen said: "I haven't in person. It is a thing I really want to mend."

The X-Files

Even though The X-Files came back for another season in 2016, and co-stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson seem like best of pals now, it wasn't always smooth sailing on the set of Fox's sci-fi smash hit. In a February 2015 interview with The Guardian, Anderson admitted that "there were definitely periods when we hated each other...Hate is too strong a word. We didn't talk for long periods of time. It was intense, and we were both pains in the arse for the other at various times." For his part, Duchovy told Variety that (via The Daily Mail), "The crucible of doing that show made monsters out of both of us."

It seems that in this instance time heals all wounds, however, and Duchovny and Anderson are now able to work peacefully side by side. Duchovny further explained to Variety, "Once we got to step back, it was like, 'Oh, wow, we really like each other...The way we work together has changed.'" All's well that ends well, and now that everyone's best friends again we just want to know: when's the next season coming?

Empire

Emotions regularly run high on Empire, and reports suggest that the drama can sometimes continue after the cameras have stopped rolling. In 2017, tabloids claimed that execs had been dealing with behind-the-scenes fighting between Taraji P. Henson (Loretha "Cookie" Lyon) and season 3 guest star Nia Long, who were apparently refusing to film scenes together. According to insiders, Long's difficult behavior with the hair, wardrobe, and makeup teams prompted an angry reaction from the series regular. "They stopped speaking to each other when they were on set," TMZ reported. "Our sources say it was next to impossible to film the scenes they did together, and that's why they had actually blocked out how to shoot those scenes separately."

A second source told E! News that things escalated when newcomer Long overstepped her mark. "Tensions calmed between them towards the end of the season, but it comes down to the fact that they both have been in the industry for so long and both want to be the star," the insider said. "Unfortunately for Nia, Taraji is the star of Empire and no one and nothing will ever change that." 

Henson has remained tight-lipped in the years since, but Long seemed to stir the pot when she spoke to TV One's Uncensored in 2018. "Nia Long knows her light, Nia long knows her makeup, Nia Long knows her hair — and you probably can't talk me into something else," she said. "If you want to call that difficult, then sorry."

Game of Thrones

Much has been written about Lena Headey and Jermone Flynn's rumored romance, but what exactly went down between these two Game of Thrones stars? Headey's Cersei Lannister and Flynn's Ser Bronn of the Blackwater shared the screen briefly during season 3, but they curiously never appeared in a single scene together after that. The two are thought to have met back in 1993 when Headey appeared on Soldier Soldier, a British drama series headlined by Flynn and his one-time musical partner, Robson Green. Flynn denied that anything was going on when The Sun quizzed him about Headey in 2003, though, interestingly, he refused to "rule out a relationship with her."

Whether they dated at the time remains unclear, but if they did, it didn't last. Headey married Peter Loughran in 2007, only to file for divorce from the musician in 2012. She married her second husband, filmmaker Dan Cadan, in 2018. It's the period in between that she supposedly got involved (or re-involved) with Flynn, though there's also rumors of some overlap (The Guardian classified their union as "an affair").

Whatever happened, it apparently ended badly. "Lena and Jerome have not filmed together due to a bad break-up," an insider told The Sun ahead of the Game of Thrones finale in 2019. "They kept the full extent of it secret but it was a very turbulent relationship and it has been very awkward on set ... She appears to have a genuine hate towards him."

Star Trek

Star Trek legends George Takei (Hikaru Sulu) and William Shatner (Captain Kirk) remain locked in a feud that has spanned several decades. They worked together from 1966-1969 and would co-star in six Star Trek feature films, giving them plenty of time to get under each other's skin. Their beef became common knowledge when Takei opened up about it in his 1994 autobiography To The Stars, claiming that Shatner would pretend not to know him on set and even had a movie script altered so that Takei's Sulu wouldn't get his own starship. It's been a tit-for-tat war of words ever since.

The feud flared up big time in 2008 when Shatner claimed to have not been invited to Takei's wedding. "There's such a sickness there, it's so painfully obvious that there's a psychosis there," Shatner said of Takei (via the New York Post). "I don't know what his original thing about me was, I have no idea. I didn't read his book that was printed many years ago." Takei claimed that Shatner's invitation must have been lost in the mail when he spoke to the Edmonton Journal in 2017, suggesting that he may be ready to make amends. However, he clearly had a change of heart. The Guardian asked Takei what his dream dinner party would look like during a 2019 Q&A, and he appeared to take a shot at his old foe with his answer: "My colleagues from Star Trek, with one exception."