Hayden Panettiere Speaks Out on Costar Melissa Barrera's 'Scream VII' Firing: "Very Unfair and Upsetting"

"It was almost like she just did it earlier than everyone else," Panettiere said.

Hayden Panettiere
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Two months after Melissa Barrera was fired from Scream VII following her support of Palestine on social media, her franchise costar Hayden Panettiere revealed in an interview with The Messenger that she felt the firing was "very unfair and upsetting." Panettiere added: "She was hurt by it, but I think she took it in stride and was very, very gracious about it.”

Barrera had posted in support of Palestine in the early days of the Israel-Palestine conflict, writing, "Why is it brown people are terrorists but white governments who act in similar ways are not?" among other pro-Palestinian posts. In early November, she was abruptly fired from the series over what Deadline calls "reposts in her Instagram stories [being] perceived as antisemitic." After she departed the series, Jenna Ortega also left over a reported salary dispute.

"I know who I am, and I know that what I said always came from a place of love and a place of humanity and a place of human rights and a place of freedom for people, which shouldn’t be controversial," Barrera told Rolling Stone of the controversy.

Melissa Barrera

(Image credit: Getty Images)

"You know, a lot of people hadn't really asked her how she felt," Panettiere told The Messenger. She added: "After she [spoke out], then a whole bunch of other actors and people in the industry started to do the same thing, right? It was almost like she just did it earlier than everyone else."

Panettiere concluded, "She was hurt by it, but I think she took it in stride and was very, very gracious about it."

Jenny Hollander
Digital Director

Jenny is the Digital Director at Marie Claire. Originally from London, she moved to New York in 2012 to attend the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism and never left. Prior to Marie Claire, she spent five years at Bustle building out its news and politics coverage. She loves, in order: her dog, goldfish crackers, and arguing about why umbrellas are fundamentally useless. Her first novel, EVERYONE WHO CAN FORGIVE ME IS DEAD, will be published by Minotaur Books on February 6, 2024.