Lea Michele Changed Her Last Name Because of Bullying

The Glee star's real last name is Sarfati, but she says kids in school would call her "Lea So-farty"

Lea Michele has more in common with her Glee character Rachel Barry than her vocal talent. The 25-year-old New Year's Eve actress was bullied in school, but not because of her social status -- because of her name.

"Sarfati. That's my real last name," Michele said on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno Wednesday. "I don't use it a lot because I got Lea So-fatty, Lea So-farty at school."

Of course, Michele isn't the only actor to speak out about their experiences with bullying in school. Stars like Charlize Theron, Demi Lovato and Eva Longoria have all opened up recently to discuss how they survived the mean kids of their youth.

So when did the Triple Threat drop her real last name and start using Michele instead?

"When I was little and I went on my first audition, they were like, 'And may we have your name?' And I was like, 'Lea Michele.' And I've been Lea Michele ever since."

Michele's new ensemble romantic comedy, New Year's Eve, hits theaters today.

Watch the Tonight Show episode below:


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