While the iconic series, which aired from 1997 to 2003, has since been cast under a new light following toxic workplace allegations against showrunner Joss Whedon, lead star Gellar has stood by the legacy of the show itself instead of its creator.
“I’ve come to a good place with it, where it’s easier to talk about,” Gellar told The Hollywood Reporter. “I’ll never tell my full story because I don’t get anything out of it. I’ve said all I’m going to say because nobody wins. Everybody loses.”
The “Do Revenge” star continued, “I’m not the only person facing this, and I hope the legacy hasn’t changed. I hope that it gives the success back to the people that put in all of the work. I will always be proud of ‘Buffy.’ I will always be proud of what my castmates did, what I did. Was it an ideal working situation? Absolutely not. But it’s OK to love ‘Buffy’ for what we created because I think it’s pretty spectacular.”
She added, “It’s not about finding my voice. It’s about learning how to use it, and using it in the right way.”
Gellar previously took to social media in 2021 amid the claims against Whedon, writing, “While I am proud to have my name associated with Buffy Summers, I don’t want to be forever associated with the name Joss Whedon…I stand with all survivors of abuse and am proud of them for speaking out.”
Now, to The Hollywood Reporter, Gellar revealed that she only rewatches Seasons 1 through 5 of the hit series. Gellar’s husband, fellow actor Freddie Prinze Jr., told THR that Gellar “had to deal with a lot of bullshit on that show for all seven years it was on” and had a reputation for being difficult on set since she stood up for the cast and crew.
“The stuff they pressed upon her, without any credit or real salary, while she was often the only one doing 15-hour days … yet she was still able to get the message of that character out every single week and do it with pride and do it professionally,” Prinze said.
Gellar’s “Buffy” co-stars Seth Green and Emma Caulfield similarly echoed sentiments around the series.
“That show was just hard,” Green recalled. “We were working crazy hours, and a lot of things that got pushed weren’t necessarily safe or under the best conditions. Sarah was always the first one to say, ‘We agreed this was a 13-hour day and it’s hour 15 — we’ve got to wrap,’ or, ‘Hey, this shot doesn’t seem safe,’ when nobody else would stick up for the cast and crew. I saw her get called a bitch, a diva, all these things that she’s not — just because she was taking the mantle of saying and doing the right thing.”
Caulfield added, “It was obvious that Sarah lacked the support to be the leader she needed and wanted to be. There was a tremendous amount of resentment and animosity [toward her] from a certain someone — and I suppose now we can all guess who.”
Returning to the sci-fi TV realm with “Wolf Pack,” set within the “Teen Wolf” universe, Gellar summed up, “I hope that I’ve set up an infrastructure, a safety net for these actors that I didn’t have. My generation just didn’t have that.”