Lea Michele is definitely in on the joke. The actress took to TikTok on Feb. 8 to reveal her reaction to the news that one of her inspirations, Barbra Streisand, will be releasing a memoir in November. Lea filmed herself looking super excited about the news. In the background, her text read, “265 days to learn how to READ!!!!!!” along with some book emojis. The text is a reference to the rumor that Lea is illiterate, which began as a conspiracy theory years ago.
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While Lea spent years not wasting her breath on addressing the rumor, she did break her silence about the theory in a Sept. 2022 interview. She specifically addressed the theory that she had to be fed her lines on Glee because she couldn’t read the scripts. “I went to Glee every single day. I knew my lines every single day,” Lea told The New York Times. “And there’s a rumor online that I can’t read or write? It’s sad. It really is. I think often, if I were a man, a lot of this wouldn’t be the case.”
Just days later, Lea proved that she can now joke about the rumors, though. She posted a TikTok to spoof the illiteracy rumors, which featured her mouthing a long to a soundbite of Kim Kardashian in tears. Lea captioned the video, “Calling Jonathan [Groff] to read me the comments on my first TikTok.” In the clip, Kim’s voice can be heard saying, “It’s amazing, but wait, can you talk for a sec?” with the sound of tears at the back of her throat.
Meanwhile, Lea’s excitement over Barbra’s memoir is not surprising. She is a longtime fan of the actress, and is currently playing Fanny Brice in Broadway’s Funny Girl, a role that Barbra originated. In December, Lea opened up about getting a letter from Barbra in her dressing room. “It was very sweet,” she revealed. “She wrote me this beautiful letter. But one thing she said in it, she was like, ‘It’s really wonderful when your dreams come true, isn’t it’? And I just like fell to my knees.”
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