Gabrielle Union On ‘AGT’ Settlement: ‘You Are Not Going To Gaslight Me Into Minimizing My trauma’


Gabrielle Union is the latest cover star of Marie Claire. She stunned in her photo spread and also opened up about how her experience being fired from America’s Got Talent has led her to be a voice for so many marginalized people.

Gabrielle Union Spoke About ‘AGT’ Firing And Condemning Racism

Gabrielle was previously fired from America’s Got Talent in 2019 after just one season as a judge. She filed a formal complaint mentioning “racist jokes, racist performances, sexual orientation discrimination and excessive focus on female judges’ appearances including race-related comments” while working on the show. About Simon Cowell in particular, she said that he would smoke directly next to her on the soundstage causing her to fall extremely ill. The actress also described intimidation tactics used by high-level execs to reportedly keep her quiet about these claims.


“That is the beauty of being a Black woman,” she said in her interview with Marie Claire. “I should be able to exist however the f*** I want to exist, because if you’re hiring Gabrielle Union for my talent, then my talent is going to come out of my body in every way, shape, and incarnation that I can imagine. You’re getting more bang for your buck the more you allow me to exist as I see fit.”

If you want to know all of the details involving Gabrielle and her longtime feud with America’s Got Talent, check out the What’s Hot Video below. It goes in-depth about her shocking firing from the show along with a look at Gabrielle’s formal complaint. At the time it seemed like the whole scandal was far from over. But now a settlement has been reached between the former ‘AGT’ judge and NBC.

Gabrielle Continued To Talk About Her ‘Trauma’

Gabrielle took a dig at those that called her claims against ‘AGT’ false or tried to denounce her. “That very sentiment is how all of this has been allowed to go on for centuries; that kind of gaslighting, I categorically reject,” she said. “You are not going to gaslight me into minimizing my trauma, which is exactly what allows this to continue on for the next person.” She mentioned that blackballing still does happen very often in Hollywood.

When asked during the interview if she thought Simon Cowell is racist, she said “I am one who calls people who continuously exhibit racist behavior racist but for the super-sensitive, I will say he has exhibited wildly problematic behavior.”

Gabrielle is no longer staying silent. “I emptied out my basket of f***s,” she said. “I cannot center fear in my life. I can’t center functioning from a fear of scarcity. They say silence is violence, and I refuse to be complicit in my silence. I have to be fully present in my body and fully free.” Gabrielle is determined to live her life with transparency.

She Also Opened Up About Her Rape Experience As A Teen

When she was just 19 years old, Gabrielle sued her former employer Payless corporation. In her book, she alleged that a man came in to rob the store and held her at gunpoint while he raped her. Payless had reportedly sent out an email that day about shoes but not about the robber which baffled Gabrielle. “My whole life didn’t have to be destroyed because they cared more about a shoe than people, so I sued them,” she said.

They settled the lawsuit but did not ask her to sign a non-disclosure agreement. “They didn’t care enough about me to silence me, because they never thought that the little Black girl that mattered less to them than a shoe would ever be in a position to be dragging them for filth,” she said.


After ‘AGT,’ Gabrielle has gone on to start her own haircare line, along with starting a new production company.


Samantha Agate
Samantha Agate

Samantha Agate is the Talent Guru here at Talent Recap. Her work has been featured at The Blast. Samantha graduated from Hunter College in 2019 with a degree in Media Studies and a Concentration in Journalism. When she isn't binge-watching reality television shows or binge-eating fried food, she loves hanging out with her friends and family and petting puppies.

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