Things have gotten heated between Gabrielle Union and her fellow costar Terry Crews, over the toxic culture on the set of America’s Got Talent.
But it seems Tyra Banks has sided with the Being Mary Jane actress.
While speaking to Yahoo on Tuesday, the 46-year-old model praised Union for sharing her truth.
I’m wit her: Tyra Banks seemingly stood by Gabrielle Union in an interview with Yahoo on Tuesday, over a toxic culture on America’s Got Talent
‘I almost kind of like dipped my toe in and left, so I’m not really immersed in the culture,’ Banks said of her one year judging on the show. ‘Like people ask me about Victoria’s Secret, I can wax poetic about that — I was there for 10 years.’
She added that she was proud of Union.
‘What I love about what she did is she was very vulnerable. I wasn’t super close to it, but I saw some of her tweets.’
Continuing: ‘I thought it was maybe beautiful… how she wasn’t speaking in anger, she’s speaking in pain like “I’m trying to get through this… and I’m crying.”‘
Union, 47, was a judge on the talent showcase for a season, until she and fellow freshman judge Julianne Hough weren’t asked to return.
Proud: She added that she was proud of Union. ‘What I love about what she did is she was very vulnerable. I wasn’t super close to it, but I saw some of her tweets.’ Continuing: ‘I thought it was maybe beautiful… how she wasn’t speaking in anger, she’s speaking in pain like “I’m trying to get through this… and I’m crying”‘
Her complaint: Union, who is black, believed she was fired because she had asked NBC and the show’s producers to respond to an environment that tolerated racist jokes and remarks, Variety reported
The trade publication Variety reported that Union, who is black, believed she was fired because she had asked NBC and the show’s producers to respond to an environment that tolerated racist jokes and remarks.
That included what Union said were multiple notes from producers saying she was wearing her hair ‘too black’ for the America’s Got Talent audience.
Union had also complained of other behavior, such as judge-producer Simon Cowell’s smoking on the indoor set, Variety reported in November.
NBC has spoken with Union as part of its formal investigation that began in early December.
Without directly referring to NBC or the two companies that produce the show, Fremantle and Syco, Union has tweeted about her situation several times, acknowledging the support she’s gotten and retweeting instructions on how to give a proper apology.
Speaking up: Gabrielle Union called out Terry Crews after he defended America’s Got Talent amid NBC’s investigation; seen in September
Union’s husband, former NBA player Dwyane Wade, and other prominent people have called for answers on why she was fired.
In a statement last November, NBC and Fremantle defended what they called the show’s ‘long history of inclusivity and diversity.’
The Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, of which Union is a member, also said that it was working with the actress to investigate her complaints.
Recently, host of AGT Terry Crews defended the show, despite her allegations she was fired after speaking against the toxic culture.
Really? Host Terry Crews told the Today Show, ‘First of all, I can’t speak for sexism because I’m not a woman, but I can speak on behalf of any racism comments…that was never my experience’
While the actress wrote she wanted to refrain from speaking about the matter until NBC finished their investigation of her claims of racism and sexism on set, she felt the need to call out Terry on Friday.
After a fan applauded her bravery, Union replied, ‘Thank u!’ before launching into her defense.
In the same tweet she wrote, ‘MULTIPLE witnesses who bravely came forward to let EVERYONE know I didn’t lie or exaggerate, really exposes those who enthusiastically will throw you under the bus.’
Her words were a clear shot at the AGT’s host who spoke on the Today Show Thursday and said, ‘I have never been in a more diverse place in 20 years of entertainment.’
While he’s having ‘the best experience’ of his ‘entire life’ hosting AGT, Crews raised eyebrows by seeming trying to diminish Union’s allegations by noting the witnesses were unnamed.
Baring all: Her Tweet were a clear shot at the AGT’s host who spoke on the Today Show Thursday and said, ‘I have never been in a more diverse place in 20 years of entertainment’
‘First of all, I can’t speak for sexism because I’m not a woman, but I can speak on behalf of any racism comments,’ he said on the talk show. ‘That was never my experience.’
Crews added: ‘I have to say this, too. When you look at what the allegations were about, it was given by an unnamed source. My thing is — it’s funny because I believe you should listen to women, you should always believe women, so I asked my wife what I should do.
‘She was like, first of all, if it’s coming from an unnamed source, because Gabrielle Union has not made any statement to this day about any of these allegations publicly … if she hasn’t made a statement, why would you?’
Union defended her allegations, as Crews falsely stated there was only one unnamed source, when they are multiple.