If these rumors are true, then these two actors might have been better off keeping the past in the past. For eight years, Debra Messing and Megan Mullally played Grace Adler and Karen Walker on the sitcom Will & Grace, but it wasn’t until the show returned for a revival series that rumors of personal issues between the two of them surfaced.
The long-running show came back for a second round in 2017, and by 2019, there was talk that Mullally and Messing were not getting along on set. Neither actor has ever directly addressed the rumors, so it’s mostly just hearsay, but there is some evidence that’s hinted at a rift between the stars. Read on to find out what supposedly happened.
Various sources have come forth with claims that Mullally and Messing did not get along during the revival series.
“They can’t stand to be near each other, and it created an impossible atmosphere on the set,” a source told Radar Online in August 2019.
“They’ve never liked each other but they started to really grate on the other’s nerves when it became clear the show was failing,” claimed an insider.
Another source claimed that there was jealousy involved. “Megan makes fun of Debra’s airs and is a favorite with the cast and crew,” they said. “She’s won two Emmys, and Debra is jealous of her success and popularity.”
In October 2019, a source told Entertainment Weekly, “Tensions were building for a while,” and it was also reported that the falling out between the two stars played a role in the show coming to an end with its 11th season.
Around the time that the reports began surfacing, fans also noticed that Mullally and Messing did not follow each other on Instagram. Currently, Mullally does not follow Messing, Eric McCormack, or Sean Hayes, but she does follow Leslie Jordan, who played Beverly Leslie in a recurring role; Messing follows all of those actors, other than Mullally.
Additionally, in August 2019, fans noticed that Messing tagged several people involved with the show in an Instagram post about the Emmys but did not tag Mullally. As reported by PopCulture.com, Messing later removed some of the tags.
There was also an Instagram Story post by Mullally that raised some eyebrows. It reportedly read: “One of the best feelings is finally losing your attachment to somebody who isn’t good for you!”
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In January 2020, Mullally spoke about a difficult work situation on her podcast In Bed with Nick and Megan, which she co-hosts with husband Nick Offerman. She didn’t name any names, but she said she was being “bullied” and “had a recent situation” that she couldn’t “be specific about,” as reported by The Sun. She continued, “I’m pretty much on my own in this situation because the bully has recruited many of my allies to their side and now they’re not my allies anymore.”
Mullally ended up sitting out two episodes of the final season of Will & Grace when she took a leave of absence, as reported by TVLine. Whether this had to do with tension with Messing is unclear.
In September 2019, McCormack was asked about the rumors of an issue between Mullally and Messing and told Us Weekly, “It seems crazy. It is crazy! I think people worried about that entirely too much.” The actor, who played Will throughout the series, added of the main cast, “The four of us get along like a house on fire, we always have.”
Then, in April 2020, when the show was ending, co-creator Max Mutchnick was asked by Entertainment Weekly about the show being able to wrap up in the right way amid the rumored tensions.
“We always work under this kind of motto that everything’s about the work. It’s just about the work,” Mutchnick responded. “And so if we stay true to that, then we just keep you guys out of whatever happened on the set this year because it would have done nothing but get in the way of the stories that we wanted to tell. It was not an easy year, but the permanent legacy of the show is much more important to us than any temporary squabble that would take place on the stage.”