Beanie Feldstein, known for her role in the film “LadyBird” and later portraying Monica Lewinksy in an FX series about Bill Clinton’s impeachment, is departing Funny Girl earlier than expected and this has a lot of people with mixed emotions, especially since it was announced Monday afternoon Lea Michele would be taking her place in September.
Emmy Award-nominee LEA MICHELE and Tony Award-nominee TOVAH FELDSHUH join #FUNNYGIRL beginning September 6!
Don’t miss Beanie Feldstein until July 31 only, followed by @JujujulieBee through September 4.
See you at the August Wilson, gorgeous!⭐️ pic.twitter.com/bvqArWoMJa
— Funny Girl on Broadway (@FunnyGirlBwy) July 11, 2022
Beanie Feldstein wrote on Instagram “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,” She continued by saying “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 supposed to depart from the show in September, but she is now leaving at the end of July, which is causing a lot of speculation around the reasons why and who would be replacing her, especially as no comment was given by the producers explaining the early departure. Although there had been rumors about Glee’s Lea Michele taking her place when it was first announced Feldstein would be leaving, those rumors were then confirmed when Funny Girl’s producers announced she would be taking the lead role in September.
If Lea Michele does take over for Beanie in Funny Girl, then Jane Lynch needs to start her campaign for the 2024 presidency like she said she would.
— Matt Gold (@mattgold71) July 11, 2022
Funny Girl had troubles when it came to a revival, as many people associated the iconic Fanny Brice with Barbra Streisand. Unfortunately for Feldstein, the reviews for her as the lead role in Funny Girl were not great. The New York Times even wrote, “You root for her to raise the roof, but she only bumps against it a little.”
Initially, when producers of the show announced Feldstein and Glee’s Jane Lynch would be departing from the show, immediate rumors of Lea Michele taking Feldstein’s spot emerged. And now, with her early departure, the rumors only increased. In the past as many know, Michele has been a controversial figure. Many former Glee actors have stated that she was not exactly a pleasure to work with. Heather Morris, who played Brittney Pierce, stated she was “very much so…unpleasant to work with.”
Trying to explain why the funny girl lea michele announcement is absolutely a HUGE deal for annoying people pic.twitter.com/q8y7rgygi4
— izzy bohn (@izzyvb023) July 11, 2022
Many have made comparisons about her real-life behavior to the character of Rachel in Glee, who is often self-centered and willing to do whatever it takes to be the best performer. So, when it was discussed that Michele might be taking over, many people wanted the details on Twitter, causing “Funny Girl” and Feldstein to trend on Twitter. Many joked about how there would be a miniature Glee reunion, since Jane Lynch, who played Sue Sylvester on the show, does not depart from Funny Girl until September.
i need to get tickets to lea michele’s first performance of funny girl so i can walk out halfway through just like sue did in s5, ep17
— madeleine (@madeleinejanne) July 11, 2022
One person said, “If Lea Michele is cast in funny girl alongside Jane lynch I will be forced to come to the conclusion that the world as we know it is actually just an episode of Glee and I don’t know if I can handle this” So of course when it was confirmed by the producers Michele would be taking Feldstein’s place, Twitter went crazy, as expected. “I’m so obsessed with the fact that the Funny Girl revival was both a mess on Glee AND in real life,” one person said, referring to Michele’s character on Glee also playing Fanny Brice in a Broadway revival. So, it seems the rumors were true about Michele replacing Feldstein, which definitely has quite the mixed response online