A 2015 clip from The Ellen DeGeneres Show (embedded above), which recently made the rounds on social media, finds the two actresses discussing a CoverGirl commercial they filmed together, with DeGeneres teasing Vergara for her English pronunciation struggles on set.
“They give her the hardest lines, too, because we have to describe what’s in the CoverGirl makeup. She has such a hard time pronouncing any of the ingredients,” DeGeneres said in the interview.
Vergara, quick on her feet, returned the jest with a light jab about DeGeneres’ age. “I think because you’re much more famous than me and older than me, they give you priority and you read the script first, and then you’re the one that makes me say those words.”
This, of course, led to the sharing of other instances where DeGeneres drew negative attention to Vergara’s accent.
While some social media users were quick to criticize the host, Vergara took to Twitter to explain that it was all in good fun. “Two comedians having fun with each other to entertain,” she tweeted along with the clip. “I was never a victim guys, I was always in on the joke.”
DeGeneres has recently come under fire after a pair of Variety and BuzzFeed News story detailed allegations of her show fostering a toxic work environment, including the alleged sexual misconduct by three top producers. Three of those named producers have since been fired.
DeGeneres sent a letter to her staff shortly after those reports came out, insisting that she always wanted her show to be “place of happiness,” and that she was “disappointed to learn that this has not been the case. … We immediately began an internal investigation and we are taking steps, together, to correct the issues.”
Several of DeGeneres’ close celebrity pals have jumped to her defense, including Kevin Hart who posted the following message of support on Instagram: “It’s crazy to see my friend go thru what she’s going thru publicly. I have known Ellen for years and I can honestly say that she’s one of the dopest people on the f–king planet. She has treated my family and my team with love and respect from Day 1.”