American actress Charisma Carpenter has accused film producer Joss Whedon of mocking her Catholic faith.
Carpenter also alleged that Whedon, the creator of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV series, created a “hostile and toxic” work environment on the set and even requested a meeting with her when she was pregnant to ask if she was “going to keep it”.
Carpenter, who played Cordelia Chase in the show and its spin-off series Angel, recently released a statement saying she had “held my tongue” about it for nearly two decades.
Claiming that Whedon had “abused his power on numerous occasions” while working on the shows’ sets, she said it had “triggered a chronic physical condition from which I still suffer”.
She said Whedon had “callously” taunted her over her weight when she was four months pregnant, calling her “fat” in front of her colleagues.
She claimed he intentionally refused calls from her agents making it impossible for her to tell him that she was pregnant and when he was made aware he requested a closed-door meeting with her.
“He asked me if I was ‘going to keep it’ and weaponised my womanhood and faith against me,” she said.
“He proceeded to attack my character, mock my religious beliefs, accuse me of sabotaging the show, and then unceremoniously fired me the following season once I gave birth.”
She alleged that Whedon also interrogated and berated her in a separate sit-down meeting regarding a rosary tattoo she had gotten to help her feel “more spiritually grounded in an increasingly volatile work climate”.
Carpenter’s allegations follow similar ones from actor Ray Fisher, who accused Whedon of misconduct while filming DC Comics and Warner Bros. Pictures’ superhero movie Justice League.
Fisher, who portrayed Cyborg in the film, said Whedon’s on-set treatment of the cast and crew was “gross, abusive, unprofessional, and completely unacceptable”.
Picture: Charisma Carpenter.