Twenty years after “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” ended, Sarah Michelle Gellar is back on the supernatural prey — this time against teen werewolves — in the new Paramount+ series “Wolf Pack,” premiering Jan. 26.
And the 45-year-old actress — who also serves as executive producer on the show — isn’t afraid to play tough behind the scenes either.
“If people think you’re a bitch, it’s almost better,” Gellar told The Hollywood Reporter. “There’s less expectation that way.”
In fact, when Gellar was kicking butt on “Buffy,” she was also standing her ground on set — even if it meant being called a diva.
“There was a time when I had a reputation of being … difficult,” she said. “Anyone that knows me knows it came from the fact that I always put in 100 percent. I never understood people who don’t.”
And Gellar is still prepared to bite back on “Wolf Pack” — especially against sexism.
“There was an issue at work the other day where they kept forgetting to send things for my approval but remembered to send them to a male actor who’s not a producer,” she said. “ ‘Oh, just old processes,’ they said. ‘Sorry.’ OK, then let’s make a new process.”
Having been acting since she was 5 — going from the soap opera “All My Children” to movies such as “I Know What You Did Last Summer,” “Cruel Intentions” and “Scooby-Doo” — Gellar certainly isn’t going to back down now.
“If you look how long I’ve been working, I’ve earned the right to stand where I am,” she said. “I won’t make any more excuses for that.”
Certainly, Gellar has paid her dues, surviving what she has called “an extremely toxic male set” on “Buffy.” Indeed, the series creator Joss Whedon has faced allegations of harassment and abusive behavior during production.
“Was it an ideal working situation? Absolutely not,” said Gellar. But, she added, “I’ll never tell my full story because I don’t get anything out of it. I’ve said all I’m going to say because nobody wins. Everybody loses.”
Still, Gellar remains very protective — and proud — of “Buffy.” “I hope the legacy hasn’t changed,” she said. “I hope that it gives the success back to the people that put in all of the work.
“I will always be proud of ‘Buffy.’ I will always be proud of what my castmates did, what I did … It’s OK to love ‘Buffy’ for what we created because I think it’s pretty spectacular.”