Lea Michele, Chris Colfer, and Cory Monteith to depart 'Glee' after season 3 -- and Michele responds

Glee-Lea-Michele-Cory

Image Credit: Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Glee will soon be down at least three: Lea Michele, Chris Colfer, and Cory Monteith are among the actors who will depart the hit Fox dramedy at the end of the third season. (The Hollywood Reporter reported the news.) The seismic cast change is not a total shock, as creator Ryan Murphy indicated last month that he planned to let those who would be seniors at McKinley High this fall graduate in May, as he didn’t want the show to be populated with characters that “were in high school for eight years.” It’s a bold decision to lose Rachel (Michele), Kurt (Colfer), and Finn (Monteith) — three of the show’s most iconic characters — all at once; then again, interest in the show’s upcoming season is sure to spike as fans tune in to see how the trio, and possibly more characters, will be sent off in new directions. (When reached by EW, Fox had no comment.) The producers are already working on adding fresh voices to the mix, casting for two new female parts; plus, the winner of Oxygen’s reality competition The Glee Project will join the ensemble for at least several episodes. Glee‘s third season debuts Sept. 20.

UPDATE: Lea Michele has responded to the news via Twitter, writing, “We always knew we’d graduate in real time. It’s all part of the plan and it’s all good! It’s going to make Season 3 amazing!!!” And: “To Gleeks everywhere, you’re in my heart now and forever. Love u all!!! This is just the beginning!!”

Read more:
Chord Overstreet not returning to ‘Glee’ as series regular
Ryan Murphy reveals season 3 secrets, talks ‘The Glee Project’ winner
Ryan Murphy says he’s planning for ‘Glee’ characters to graduate this season


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  • Eric P

    yay!! hopefully they will lose viewers and get cancelled.

    • Kyle

      Agreed. Also, if Glee already sucks, I wonder why would they ever think that some spin-off would make the cut. Idiot Murphy!

      • Dina

        Hasn’t this “NEWS” been an EW headline about a dozen times since the show’s finale in May?? New material people….

      • Liz

        Aah stupid people who don’t know how TV works. Just because you think it suck or other people. The show is still popular so its still on.TV rating are based on viewership not popular opinion…DUH!! Hence spin-off would be popular. Idiot Kyle!!

      • DUH

        you know, you don’t have to watch it if you don’t like it…

      • Alexa Nicole

        I love glee…It’s going to be way different without them.If you dont like glee then why look at this anyways? If you have nothing nice to say then dont say it all, were you guyss never taught that?

    • Alan Carver

      I concur Eric! This show had to live up to alot of hype after the mid-season replacement and then coming back for a ‘second’ season, it just fell FLAT! If Murphy is SERIOUS about this move after the end of the THIRD season, viewership will drop even more and FOX will have no choice but to put that entire show on notice it is potentially at RISK for getting canceled! It could also be a ploy to keep them too, as in they are not going to graduate due to a Sue Sylvester hijink! You just never know.

      • Kevin

        Saying it fell flat is more than dramatic; the second season was uneven and went into an eye-rolling surrealism at some points, yes, but the season also had quite a few stand alone, fantastic episodes like The Substitute and Born This Way.

      • Steph

        I just find it odd that graduating has only started now. What, was it a requirement to be sophomore or younger to join the Glee club? And after season 1, Matt “transferred” but couldn’t he have just been a senior and graduated? Makes more sense!

    • Swarles Barkley

      This would actually cause me to come back to this show. I stopped watching about a quarter of the way through the second season. There was no real direction and the main characters became so annoying. The jokes and story was repetitive. One more joke about Schue’s hair gel, one more ep devoted to Kurt being bullied, one more episode where Lea Michelle sings with a a camera right up on her face so it looks like her teeth are trying to get away from her. Ugh, if they could recapture the magic of the first half of the first season by starting with a fresher cast that would be GREAT!

      • kate middleton

        Couldn’t agree with you more. Everything about it was so lazy this past season.

      • Kenna

        I was going to comment properly, but I decided I care more about your awesome choice of name. Legendary!

      • Casual Viewer

        Excellent idea to try to keep the show fresh. Lea Michele, in particular, looks every minute of her 25 years (not that she doesn’t look good) and needs to move on from high school.

      • @Casual Viewer

        She’s 29, actually
        And couldn’t agree more with Swarles

      • Gleek

        Casual Viewer: Your math is off. Lea was born in 1986,that would make her 25.

    • NOBAMA 2012

      Obama is trying to push America past it’s default date because he wants more power. He failed to save our gulf and our economy. 2012 cannot com sooner.

      • LMFAO

        Clown ^^^^

      • Jackie D

        Get a life, loser.

      • sckofrtwngbs

        With all the absolutely garbage reality and stupid TV shows on the air most of you don’t seem to know a fresh quality show, when you see one. To busy with Housewives of White Trash idiotville? Obama has something to do with Glee? Gee you are a WBush Repug aren’t you? OBama and Glee, now read this slowly, I will try and use small words, Obam and Glee have just about as much in common as GWBush and competency and a brain. Is that to hard to follow? I wish I had a crayon.

      • Cha

        Ignorant, brainwashed, idiot.

    • kate middleton

      Lea Michele is the most annoying part of the show….so this could be a good thing. I am so over Glee though – it got old so fast, as Swarles Barkley said above.

    • Ellen

      Well, that’s rather selfish of you, isn’t it Eric? There are a lot of people who like it, and you don’t have to watch it or read these articles.

    • RLRose328

      I am a diehard Gleek… I know it’s formulaic. I know the storylines sometimes meander. I know it seems as if the writers forget from week to week what they’ve had a character do (Sue has “forgiven” or made up with Shue HOW many times, only to bully him the following week… again?). I know the actors look older than their supposed ages. I know the entire show is nothing more than a vehicle for selling the music, CDs, and tour.
      None of that matters to me. I like the show. It makes me smile. It makes me laugh. It makes me cry. The storylines sometimes mean something to my real life (my son was bullied last during the last school year) so their original son “Loser Like Me” was perfect.
      And I’m extremely pleased with the Kurt/Blaine (will NOT call it “Klaine”) storyline. It may be a story made in Hollywood unreality, but it felt good to see those 2 characters connect.
      Knock Glee all you want. I know all of its flaws but I love it anyway. (And I have to sit here during every episode, listening to my husband knock it, so take your best shot.) :-)

    • Jolie

      They better get someone EXTREMELY hot to replace Cory. He is the most super fine thing on TV right now!

    • Heidi

      Hey, if you hate the show so much why are you reading this article? Go troll some other board

  • idviceroy

    It’s going to be interesting to see where all this goes. I didn’t watch Glee until the Madonna episode, and I’ve been hooked ever since. While I tire of the on-again-off-again Rachael/Finn relationship they are great characters, as is Kurt.

  • Darrin

    That’s ok, because after the complete mess that was Season 2, I’ve already departed as a viewer.

    • Alan Carver

      Yeah season two fell completely FLAT!

  • MJ

    It actually makes. Who wants to watch a show about High School students that look like they should be teachers instead of students?

    • Bob Frapples

      Fans of the original 90210?

    • Anya

      You know that the actors who play Puck and Finn are actually right around the same age as the actor who plays Mr. Shue already. So they’ve basically already done that.

  • Little Bunny Foo-Foo

    Meh. This really isn’t a surprise.

    • deedeedragons

      Exactly. Anyone with half a brain knew who would be wanting to move on to greener pastures.

      • Meme

        Glee: Senior Year – On Theaters.
        HSM, anyone?

  • Steve

    I think he seriously doomed this show.

  • kate

    Now Lea Michele can go on to being our generations Barbra Streisand.

    • Necro

      In Your Dreams. Lea is not now nor ever will be a Barbra Streisand.

      • Chris

        She’s better than Babs.

      • Meme

        Who cares about her? Is she even alive?

      • Kevin

        LMAO!!!!! Lea isn’t even this generation’s Lainie Kazan, let alone Babs. I’m happy she’s moving on, she was the only thing I couldn’t stand about the show. Maybe now she can go back to obscurity.

      • Maureen

        @Chris: Are you being for real?

      • D’s Advocate

        I’m sure Lea Michele is better than Streisand about something…but it’s more likely something like Mario Kart rather than acting or singing. (And no, I’m not saying that Lea is untalented…but maybe let’s give her another year or two until we compare her to one of the biggest celebrities of the past 50 years.

      • AndyLuvr

        I’m so sick of Lea Michele being compared to Barbra Streisand because Michele isn’t even worthy to lick Streisand’s shoes. Her leaving GLEE may be a blessing because her singing technique has suffered a great deal since she’s started tackling these pop songs instead of her musical theatre fare. Be that as it may, Michele’s voice is nowhere near as good as Streisand’s and only time will tell whether Michele’s career will even come close to Streisand’s as well.

      • Aaron

        Anyone who thinks Lea Michele is better than Barbra Streisand obviously has no idea of the talents that Ms. Streisand possesses…I’m not a religious viewer of Glee (only seen a couple of episodes and never cared for it), but I’ve listened to the Spring Awakening soundtrack and realize Lea Michele does have talent but in no way is she even close to Babs. My god she is one of the greatest entertainers of all time!

    • Cat

      I’m seriously looking forward to her album.

    • Alan Carver

      Uh NO! She is not nor will she ever come close to ICONIC Barbra Streisand. Keep dreaming Kate! Back to broadway for Lea, and whatever show she came from! Bye!

      • Chanandler

        I was so excited to see this news! They really tanked the leads last season. I always thought Rachel was going to be annoying yet loveable, WRONG just annoying. Kurt-whatever I’m over your drama, we all have things that we go through it doesn’t mean you should get a whole season to whine about how fabulous you are (after 3 or 4 episodes we stopped caring) and Finn, please take Quinn with you and never come back.

      • Realist

        Except that almost no one under 40 (and that’s being generous) cares about Barbra.

      • @realist

        That nobody under 40 cares doesn’t change the fact that Streisand is not only tremendously talented, but a pop culture icon. Michele is just another TV starlet.

    • PeopleWhoNeedPeople

      Maybe she’ll be this generation’s Shelly Long! ZIng!

    • kate

      I never said that she was Barbra Streisand or tried to compare them, because their voices and acting styles are very different. I was only trying to say that I believe that Lea Michele has the potential of being for this generation what Barbra was for her’s, a talented actress and singer who can help revive the musical movie which has been missing over the last few years with the exceptions of Chicago and Moulin Rouge(which aren’t even considered all time greats in that genre). Maybe if you all had been hugged more as children you would be more positive and open to other actresses instead of living in the past.

      • Miranda

        Barbra only managed to do what she did because there were writers and directors making good musicals. Chicago won a best picture Oscar and grossed over $300 million. If that didn’t bring back the musical what makes you think Lea can change things?

  • Twenty

    Okay…

  • Lily

    Hope that Kurt,Rachel and Finn are a bit pushed to the background in Season 3 ,so they wont leave too much of a void.

  • AK

    In the early part of the first season, wasn’t Rachel a freshman and Finn a senior?

    • Woot

      No Rachel stated she was a sophomore in the pilot I believe. So end of 3rd season she would technically be graduating.

    • anon

      Rachel was a sophomore. I don’t know what grade Finn was in though..

    • Jules

      No, both were sophomores.

    • Just another gleek

      No, Rachel said she was a sophomore when she was talking with Mr. Schu (can’t say which episode it was).

    • Jackie

      They were both sophomores in the first season.

    • Steph

      Rachel said in one of the very first episodes that she was a sophomore. Other than that, I don’t recall any character ever saying what year they were in. Then again, pretty much everyone was at the “junior prom” this past season? So at least everyone who ran for Junior Prom King/Queen would graduate, right? Basically halving the regular cast. Why couldn’t Kurt have been a freshman season 1? He looked younger than the rest of them!

    • Ava

      I thought she was younger too – and that Puck and Quinn were both the same year as Finn. It seemed Kurt was younger too. Not sure how they decided who was what age.

  • Necro

    Oh happy day! There is a God.

  • Erik

    Didn’t they learn anything from Friday Night Lights. Main characters leave, especially this many, there go the fans/viewers. Well at least Glee was a nice experiment for 3 seasons.

    • PJ

      Actually, it was only a nice experiment for the first half of season 1. It’s been a huge mess ever since.

      • Becca

        So true!

      • Woot

        It’s had its sporadic bright spots since.

      • Cat

        Word

      • teekay

        Yup.

    • Darrin

      It wasn’t like FNL had huge ratings which suddenly dropped when some of the original cast graduates. The show had the same small but loyal audience all through its run, and though the old characters were missed, the new ones were blended in very well.

      • Antonio

        Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you rieeld on the video to make your point. You definitely know what youre talking about, why throw away your intelligence on just posting videos to your blog when you could be giving us something enlightening to read?

  • Jane

    Good. I am getting tired of the Kurt storyline.

    • Chris

      I was waiting for the episode when Kurt gets a sex change. Maybe that will be season 3 season finale.

      • Cooldude

        Agreed.

      • Marcus

        Wow, could you be more of a douchebag? Don’t you have a monster truck show or a NASCAR race to watch with all the other idiots?

  • anon

    What are they doing with Puck then?

    • Jackie

      I was thinking maybe Puck and Brittany would both get held back due to poor grades.

      • anon

        that’d be awesome! good thinking.

      • Steph

        Good plan. Since those kids are hardly ever in classrooms, it would make sense for McKinley to have some 5th year seniors.

    • kate middleton

      Yeah – I think most of the rest of them are the same age too. Quinn, Santana, Puck, Brittany, Mercedes, Artie, Tina. They could hold some of them back, but what about the rest? Weird.

  • Amber

    Where does that leave Blaine? So much for the awesome Klaine romance. Will he just be left alone on the show? I thought that RIB loved the Klaine romance; it’s certainly the best part of the show right now.

    • Lily

      Blaine has to be able to be more than just “Kurt’s accessory” to survive…

    • Jackie

      I think Blaine is the same age as the others, so he’d be graduating at the end of this season too. Plus, in the season finale, Kurt told Rachel that he’d talked to Blaine about moving to New York and that Blaine was all for it.

      • Amber

        Right then. I can’t keep track of Blaine’s age. Well, as long as Kurt and Blaine leave together, I guess that would be okay. But I’m not interested in Glee without the original characters.

    • Marcus

      The best part of the show? Nonsense. It was poorly written, the pacing made no sense, and Blaine’s inconsistent characterization was infuriating. Teenage girls are the only people who are happy with the Klaine relationship because they think it’s completely healthy to be in crappy relationships simply because there’s no better option.

      • Viv

        I have a lot of friends (aged 25-30) who really like the Klaine relationship. They all tend to be in or have been in really crappy relationships where they settle for the first dbag comes along.

    • Rbc

      what?!?!?!?!!!!!! I HATE the klaine storyline

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