Buffy and Angel 's David Boreanaz Supports Charisma Carpenter After Claims Against Joss Whedon

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Natalie Stone
·4 min read
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Jon Kopaloff/Getty; Rodin Eckenroth/WireImage

Buffy the Vampire Slayer's David Boreanaz has extended his support to costar Charisma Carpenter both publicly and privately after she came forward with allegations against series creator Joss Whedon.

Days after Carpenter claimed that Whedon "abused his power on numerous occasions while working together" on the series and its spinoff, Angel, costar Boreanaz praised her for speaking out.

"I am here for you to listen and support you. Proud of your strength," Boreanaz, 51, tweeted alongside a red heart and praying hands emoji, on Feb. 14 in response to her statement.

Acknowledging his support, Carpenter replied: "I know you're there for me, David. I appreciate all you've done to demonstrate that support privately as well. Especially since Wednesday. -Thank you so much," she posted on Twitter, also adding a red heart emoji.

Carpenter starred as Cordelia Chase from the supernatural series' launch in 1997 and later joined the Boreanaz-fronted spinoff, Angel, through 2003.

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In a lengthy, emotional statement posted on social media on Feb. 10, the actress accused Whedon of abusing his power when she appeared on both shows, including making repeated threats to fire her and efforts to "alienate" her from her peers, as well as placing added work stress on her while she was pregnant — leaving her with what she called a "chronic physical condition" triggered by the trauma.

Getty Buffy

When contacted by PEOPLE, reps for Whedon did not have a comment.

"For nearly two decades, I have held my tongue and made excuses for certain events that traumatize me to this day," began Carpenter, 50. "Joss Whedon abused his power on numerous occasions while working together on the sets of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel. While he found his misconduct amusing, it only served to intensify my performance anxiety, disempower me and alienate me from my peers. The disturbing incidents triggered a chronic physical condition from which I still suffer. It is with a beating, heavy heart that I say I coped in isolation and, at times, destructively."

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The actress claimed Whedon, 56, would regularly issue "passive-aggressive threats to fire" her and would make public, disparaging comments about her weight in front of fellow coworkers.

"He was mean and biting, disparaging about other openly, and often played favorites, pitting people against one another to compete and vie for his attention and approval," she alleged.

During one alleged instance, Carpenter claimed Whedon asked her if she planned to "keep" her baby after learning she was pregnant — and ultimately fired her shortly after she gave birth.

John Sciulli/Getty; Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic Charisma Carpenter (L); Joss Whedon

"He proceeded to attack my character, mock my religious beliefs, accuse me of sabotaging the show, and then unceremoniously fired me the following season once I gave birth," she claimed.

Carpenter said she felt empowered to speak out after actor Ray Fisher came forward with allegations against Whedon last year, claiming the director "was gross, abusive, unprofessional, and completely unacceptable" while they worked together on Justice League in 2017. Fisher's claims prompted an internal investigation, which concluded in December 2020. WarnerMedia said at the time that "remedial action has been taken."

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Fisher, 33, responded on Twitter, calling Carpenter "one of the bravest people I know."

She added that she hopes to "create a space for healing" by coming forward with her own story. "It has taken so long to muster the courage to make this statement publicly," Carpenter wrote. "The gravity of it is not lost on me. As a single mother whose family's livelihood is dependent on my craft, I'm scared."

"I can no longer remain silent," she added. "This is overdue and necessary. It is time."

Since coming forward, a number of Carpenter's former costars have spoken out, including Eliza Dushku, Amber Benson, Michelle Trachtenberg and Sarah Michelle Gellar.