Every good TV show is built on relationships. It’s not enough to have a great plot and a charismatic lead. You must also have sparkling onscreen chemistry between different characters.
Your favorite TV shows are filled with characters who are great friends and partners onscreen. Once the cameras stop rolling, though, some of these actors really hated each other.
Wondering if your favorite TV show BFFs actually despise one another? Here is our definitive list of TV pals who hated each other in real life.
Will Smith and Janet Hubert
Fresh Prince of Bel-Air fans may remember that Aunt Viv switched actresses. At first, Viv was played by Janet Hubert. But starting in season three, Hubert was replaced by Daphne Maxwell Reid.
Why the switch? Reportedly, Hubert was fired for violating the terms of her contract by getting pregnant. But Hubert claims in her memoir it was Smith who suggested she be fired.
In 2011, Hubert told TMZ “there will never be a [Fresh Prince of Bel Air] reunion” because she will never do anything with Will Smith, whom she called an “egomaniac” and worse.
For his part, Smith has laid his own claims of egotism on Hubert. “I can say straight up that Janet Hubert wanted the show to be ‘The Aunt Viv of Bel-Air Show’ because I know she is going to dog me in the press,” he told an Atlanta radio station in 1993.
According to Smith, their beef started because Hubert was jealous of his success. “She said once, ‘I’ve been in the business for 10 years and this snotty-nosed punk comes along and gets a show.'”
However, it seems Smith and Hubert have finally buried the hatchet. They filmed a Fresh Prince reunion special in September, to air on HBO Max in November, possibly signaling that they have finally made up.
For his part, in recent years, Smith has said some complimentary things about Hubert, even implying that she was the best Aunt Viv on the show in a 2016 BBC Radio interview. “I think she’s brilliant. As an artist, there are so many things she does. She sings, she dances, she’s like a really powerful artist. I loved what she brought to The Fresh Prince.”
Megan Mullally and Debra Messing
Some actors are better at covering up their beef than others. For example, Will & Grace co-stars Megan Mullally and Debra Messing had a hidden beef uncovered mostly due to online detectives.
In June 2019, Messing posted an Emmy awards snap and tagged all of her costars except Mullally. That was when fans realized that Messing and Mullally had unfollowed each other on Instagram.
That summer, Mullally also posted a cryptic Instagram Story (now deleted) that read, “One of the best feelings is finally losing your attachment to somebody who isn’t good for you!”
Was this about Messing? Probably. Mullally ended up not appearing in two episodes of Will & Grace‘s final season because, allegedly, she couldn’t stand working with Messing!
Mullally seemed to address the feud in her podcast in January 2020, where she claimed she was being “bullied,” but she didn’t specify names. “I’ve had a recent situation and I can’t be specific about but I had it happen and I did try to stand up for myself in certain ways and that made it a thousand times [worse].”
She also seemed to hint at why she also unfollowed co-star Sean Hayes on social media. “I’m pretty much on my own in this situation because the bully has recruited many of my allies to their side and now they’re not my allies anymore.”
The Mullally/Messing feud was so notorious that it even sparked rumors that it was the real reason Will & Grace‘s revival ended, although NBC denied this.
Lea Michele and the ‘Glee’ cast
In some ways, Lea Michele takes the cake for beefing with costars. That’s because much of the Glee cast actually hated her!
The most prominent rift was between Michele and co-star Naya Rivera, who tragically passed away in July. In her 2016 memoir Sorry Not Sorry, Rivera speculated that Michele was jealous that her costar was getting more time.
“I think Rachel — erm, I mean Lea — didn’t like sharing the spotlight,” Rivera wrote. “It seemed like she blamed me for anything and everything that went wrong.”
On top of that, claims of racism and bullying have dogged Michele. In June, former co-star Samantha Warie tweeted that Michele had made her life “a living hell.” Few cast members jumped to her defense, and Michele issued an apology two days later.
“Whether it was my privileged position and perspective that caused me to be perceived as insensitive or inappropriate at times or whether it was just my immaturity and me just being unnecessarily difficult, I apologize for my behavior and for any pain which I have caused,” Michele wrote. “We all can grow and change and I have definitely used these past several months to reflect on my own shortcomings.”
Kim Cattrall and Sarah Jessica Parker
There were rumors for many years that Sex and the City stars Kim Cattrall and Sarah Jessica Parker didn’t like each other. Those rumors were confirmed in 2017 when Cattrall told Piers Morgan that the castmates “were never friends” and that Parker specifically “could have been nicer.”
Cattrall doubled down once her brother passed away in February 2018. After Parker offered condolences, Cattrall exploded on Instagram.
“I don’t need your love or support at this tragic time @SarahJessicaParker,” Cattrall wrote. “You are not my family. You are not my friend. So I’m writing to tell you one last time to stop exploiting our tragedy in order to restore your ‘nice girl’ persona.”
Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd
In many ways, the hit ’80s TV show Moonlighting created the idea of “will they, won’t they” romantic tension thanks to bickering leads Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd. But in 2005, Shepherd told Entertainment Weekly that “at one point in the show, it had gotten to where we just hated each other.”
Did they ever reconcile? Maybe. Shepherd took part in a roast of Bruce Willis in 2018, and got in a good jab. “On Moonlighting, I played a former model, which I was, and Bruce played an asshole, which he is,” she joked. But true enemies don’t usually show up to a lighthearted roast, so maybe the two have finally buried the hatchet.
Stana Katic and Nathan Fillion
The TV show Castle revolved around the growing relationship between characters played by Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic. After the show was canceled, alleged insiders told US Weekly how much the two secretly hated each other.
A source claimed, “Stana Katic and Nathan Fillion completely despise each other… They will not speak when they are off set, and this has been going on for seasons now.”
But was the beef real, and is it still going on?
Not according to the actors in question. When Katic left the show after eight seasons, Fillion tweeted “She will be missed” in April 2016.
For her part, Katic doesn’t seem to have held on to any bad blood. In 2018, she told Entertainment Weekly that she could never “be anything but grateful” for her castmates and the show they created.
William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy
William Shatner was allegedly hated by most of his fellow Star Trek cast members, but his biggest beef was with Leonard Nimoy.
Reportedly, Shatner stole lines and tried to assert himself as the face of the show.
Fed up, Nimoy finally went “to the producers, demanding equal pay with Shatner and insisted that they confirm that Spock was the show’s true star,” according to Express.
Of course, this was back in the ’60s, so surely this is all water under the bridge by now?
Sort of. In later decades, Shatner and Nimoy bonded over personal tragedies in their lives, and Nimoy was even the best man at Shatner’s third wedding.
But sadly, Shatner revealed that at the time of Nimoy’s death in 2015, the pair hadn’t spoken in five years. Shatner claims Nimoy was mad because he filmed him without permission for a documentary he was making.
However, if you have any doubt that Shatner truly loved and respected his friend, the revelation came in a book Shatner released in 2016.
The title? Leonard: My Fifty Year Friendship with a Remarkable Man.
Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny
Most behind-the-scenes beefs have pretty humble beginnings. And this is especially true of X-Files stars Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny.
In 2015, Anderson told The Guardian that long weeks of filming compared to Duchovny’s disdain for TV acting made things rough.
“There were definitely periods when we hated each other,” she said. “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.”
They’ve both matured and moved on, though. And the two even made a rare mutual appearance at the Spooky Empire convention in Orlando in 2018.
Alyssa Milano and Shannen Doherty
The original Charmed show was built on the chemistry between the Halliwell sisters played by Shannen Doherty, Alyssa Milano, and Holly Marie Combs on the first three seasons. Unfortunately, things weren’t so magical for Milano and Doherty behind the scenes.
“We definitely didn’t get along,” Milano told TV Guide in 2002. Things got so bad that the studio brought in a mediator to try to mend their relationship, but it just made things worse.
Eventually, Doherty left the show after season three, reportedly because of how bad the feud became. However, time does indeed seem to heal wounds.
In June 2017, Milano revealed to E! Online that the pair had made up. “I think we’re just at ages now that what happens 15 years ago, or however long ago that was, it’s irrelevant,” she said.
She added that they communicate with each other via direct messages on Twitter, and she wishes Doherty well as she is battling cancer.
“I think that what she has gone through, [and] motherhood in my life, I think it just changes people,” Milano said in 2017. “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.”
Charlie Sheen and Selma Blair
In Anger Management, Selma Blair played a love interest for Charlie Sheen. But things were far from lovely on the set whenever the two were together.
According to TMZ, Blair hated that Sheen was always late to set, and she declared him a “menace to work with.” This allegedly caused Sheen to explode in anger and get her fired.
Blair did end up leaving the show. And according to the Hollywood Reporter, Sheen did indeed get her fired by sending out a stream of rude and misogynistic text messages.