In what has no doubt been the worst couple of months of her life, Glee
’s Lea Michele put on a brave face and spoke to the media for the first time today about the upcoming episode honouring her on-and-off screen boyfriend, Cory Monteith.
The star appeared with series’ creator Ryan Murphy, co-stars, Matthew Morrison (Mr. Schuester), and Jane Lynch (Coach Sue) at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s Glee
Michele confessed that she had not yet seen “The Quarterback” episode but described the tribute as “perfect”, according to Australia’s TV Week
. Michele spoke about Cory’s death saying “I feel like, for me personally, I’ve lost two people: Cory and Finn.”
She went on to reveal details about the Glee
family’s farewell to Cory: “We had a beautiful memorial for Cory in the auditorium and some of the cast members sang and people spoke about him. It only felt right that we would do the same thing for Finn, so I felt it was very therapeutic.”
And it was this feeling of being therapeutic that drove the tribute episode with Michele adding: “We did it because it was something we all needed to do together.”
There was much speculation following Cory’s untimely death in early July that Michele would not be returning back to headline the musical dramedy. Michele responded to the query, “Everyone is asking: ‘Is it hard to do this? Is it hard to be back at work?’, but the truth is it’s no harder at work than it is in life so we might as well all be together as a family supporting each other to get through this together.”
“The Quarterback” will be set a few weeks after Finn’s funeral and shows the New Directions, past and present, gathering together to say farewell to the beloved leader in the only way they know how – through song. We reported on the final song list
earlier this week, and we have heard excerpts from Michele’s haunting version of Bob Dylan’s “Make You Feel My Love” in the promo for the episode.
Speaking about Michele’s performance in the episode, Morrison revealed that hers was one of the first scenes shot, and the way she carried herself through the performance provided inspiration for the rest of the cast and crew throughout the production. “She had one of the first songs we filmed for the episode, and she did it so beautifully and after, she said something like, ‘It can’t be harder for anyone else than it was for me.'”
He continued, explaining, “So, we knew we had to show up because our leader stepped forward and kind of gave permission to all of us to do it. I don’t think we could have done it without her.”
Michele also provided glimpses into some adventures she had with Monteith and how that somehow spilled into the episode as Rachel presents the glee club with a plaque of Finn: “One day I came home, and Cory was there with this plaque from the set that we always had in the glee club and I said, ‘What’s this doing here?’ and he said, ‘I took it!’ He said, ‘This summer we are going to take it all over everywhere we go and take pictures of us with this plaque!’ and that’s what we did! Then I got the script and thought it was so unbelievable that they chose to do that in the episode. So, for me, there are a lot of little things that are so special, everything means a lot to me.”
Michele also shared how she’s like the millions of fans worldwide to remember Monteith: “I really woke up every single day feeling like I was being in some sort of spell or something, that I was lucky enough to have him in my life. I feel like what happened with Cory (the cause of his death) was this big,” she says, holding her fingers together to reflect a miniscule amount in the scheme of who he was and his life.
She concluded saying simply, “There was no greater man than Cory, so for the time we spent together I consider myself very lucky.”
“The Quarterback” airs this Thursday night in the US on Fox.