Is There A Glee Curse? All The Tragic Early Deaths That Plagued Cast In Wake Of Naya Rivera Death Rumors

Photo: Kathy Hutchins / Tinseltown/ Shutterstock
Is There A Glee Curse? All The Tragic Early Deaths That Plagued Cast In Wake Of Naya Rivera Death Rumors
Entertainment And News

On Wednesday, July 8, 2020, Glee star Naya Rivera went missing off of a boat in Lake Piru in Ventura County, CA. Rivera was determined to be missing after authorities responded to a report about a 4-year-old child who was found alone on a boat in the lake. And though, ultimately, it was revealed to be Rivera's son on the boat, Rivera has still not been found as of this writing. Authorities in the area are resuming their search for her this morning, however, she is presumed to be dead. 

This is just the latest in a series of tragedies tied to the hit show, which has led people to wonder:

Is there a Glee curse?

RELATED: Lea Michele Scandal: Full List Of Who's Defending The 'Glee' Star And Who's Not​

Cory Monteith died on July 13, 2013. 

As one of the most beloved stars of the show, Cory Monteith became infamous for his role as Finn Hudson. Despite his talent, however, Monteith long struggled with the scourge of addiction. He even took time off from Glee to go to rehab. But on July 13, 2013, Monteith was found dead in a hotel room in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. An autopsy later revealed that he'd died of a drug overdose. 

Jim Fuller died on September 14, 2013. 

Just three months after Cory Monteith's tragic suicide, Jim Fuller — an assistant director on Glee passed away in his sleep on September 14, 2013. He was 41 years old. An autopsy later revealed that he died of heart failure. 

Nancy Motes died on February 9, 2014.

Nancy Motes was a production assistant on Glee and the less-famous sister of one Julia Roberts. While it seemed as though Motes was able to carve a path for herself outside of her infamous sister, her death by suicide on February 9, 2014,  proved otherwise. In the note she left behind, Motes railed against Roberts for several pages, calling her names and revealing that "America's Sweetheart" wasn't as nice as she tried to portray herself to be. 

RELATED: Lea Michele Waxing On Camera Proves Celebs Are Just As Hairy As Us​


Becca Tobin's boyfriend died on July 10, 2014.

Becca Tobin played the beautiful Kitty Wilde on Glee but her boyfriend at the time, Matt Bendik, died in a very tragic way on July 10, 2014. A maid found Bendik lying face down, and dead, in a hotel room in Philadelphia. And though there was much speculation on what, exactly, caused his death, authorities confirmed that neither drugs nor weapons were found at the scene. Bendik's death was ultimately only deemed "sudden." 

Mark Salling died on January 30, 2018.

Salling rose to fame playing the bad boy of Noah "Puck" Puckerman on the hit Fox musical show. However, life imitated art when it was revealed that he'd been arrested and charged with possession of child pornography. On January 30, 2018 — just six weeks before his sentencing — Salling died by suicide. In a statement following his death, his family tried to downplay his crimes. "Mark was a gentle and loving person, a person of great creativity, who was doing his best to atone for some serious mistake and errors of judgment. He is survived by his mother and father, and brother. The Salling family appreciates the support they have been receiving and asks for their privacy to be respected," they said.

The cast seems to be troubled outside of these tragic deaths. 

Whether you ultimately believe there is a Glee curse or not, it's clear that outside of these deaths, the cast of the show has suffered its fair share of troubles. There was the case of Dianna Agron, who got into a very abusive relationship with her then-boyfriend, Alex Pettyfer, and ultimately hid out from him because she was "terrified" of what he might do. There was the case of Jesse Lukin, who was arrested and charged with a DUI after he crashed his car. And of course, let's not forget the case of Lea Michele, who was accused of very disturbing and potentially racist behavior not too long ago. 

RELATED: Was 'Glee's' Cory Monteith Planning To Propose To Lea Michele?​

Whatever the case may be, we will continue to keep you updated on any developments in the Naya Rivera tragedy. 

Subscribe to YourTango's newsletter to keep up with us for FREE

- Our best articles delivered straight to your inbox
- The latest in entertainment and news
- Daily horoscopes and love advice

Bernadette Giacomazzo is an editor, writer, publicist, and photographer whose work has appeared in Teen Vogue, People, Us Weekly, The Source, XXL, HipHopDX, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post,, and more.