Shannen Doherty isn’t holding back. During the December 17 episode of her new podcast, “Let’s Be Clear,” the actress revealed the truth about her much-talked-about departure from the hit series Charmed after three seasons in 2001, confessing that despite initially claiming she’d left the show of her own volition, she’d actually been fired. (Shannen’s guest, fellow Charmed alum Holly Marie Combs, claimed their costar Alyssa Milano had pressured producers into giving Shannen the boot.) Reasoned Shannen, “One can’t keep telling the same story over and over and over again, when it’s not the truth.”

She’s more than ready to keep speaking her truth. The 52-year-old — who has been battling stage IV breast cancer since 2015 — is on a mission to set the record straight, and the former child star is opening up like never before about her decades-long Hollywood career, her widely publicized behind-the-scenes feuds and the devastating end of her 11-year marriage to her third husband, photographer Kurt Iswarienko, in April. And she doesn’t care if she ruffles feathers along the way. “Shannen knows her truth and she’s not afraid to tell it,” a source exclusively tells In Touch. “At this point, she has nothing to lose. There have been so many lies said about her over the years that she wants to correct — and if that means settling some old scores in the process, so be it.”

Bad Reputation

After getting her start as a kid on such shows as Little House on the Prairie, landing the coveted role of transplanted Midwestern teen Brenda Walsh on Beverly Hills, 90210 in 1990 was a dream come true for Shannen. But drama between her and her costars — including Jennie Garth and Tori Spelling — soon took center stage. “It always seemed that Tori and Jennie were ganging up on Shannen,” says the source. At one point, things were so bad that Shannen and Jennie nearly exchanged blows on set. “I got in her face,” Jennie recalled of the fight — during which their male costars had to physically hold them both back — in a 2019 interview, adding, “We’re just both strong Aries women. We don’t back down — no matter what.”

Yet Shannen bore the brunt of bad publicity, earning a rep as a “bad girl” who was demanding on set; she was fired from the series after four seasons. “Shannen isn’t saying she was an angel, but she was treated horribly by a lot of people and unfairly painted as a mean girl and difficult to work with,” says the source, noting that the actress was relieved when Jennie appeared to take some accountability years later. “Shannen may have been intense, but she wasn’t the only one to blame for the tension on set. By talking about their near-physical altercation, Jennie was admitting she was just as much to blame.”

Indeed, the entire cast was in over their heads. “It was too much to handle for all of them, to get famous so fast and be thrown into the spotlight at that age,” says the source. “Tori and Shannen and Brian [Austin Green] couldn’t go to a club without making headlines. They just wanted to be teenagers.””

When the cast reunited for the BH90210 revival series in 2019, Shannen quickly shut down talk that she was once again causing friction, saying, “Being a part of TV history is an honor but it also comes with some massive backlash. One of the reasons I hesitated to say yes was for this crap … there is zero truth to it.”

Butting Heads

History seemed to repeat itself during Shannen’s time playing the eldest of three witchy sisters on The CW’s Charmed. After leaving the show in 2001, she hinted that her costars had become petty while she was there to do her job. “There was too much drama on the set and not enough passion for the work,” she told an interviewer. “You know, I’m 30 years old, and I don’t have time for drama in my life anymore.” 

Now, more than 20 years later, Shannen isn’t beating around the bush. During her two-part conversation with Holly on “Let’s Be Clear,” she accused Alyssa of coming between the old friends. “[She] caused like this sort of weird divide between the two of us that then continued throughout season 2 where I think I cried every single night of season 2,” Shannen said. (Charmed went on to run for eight seasons, with Rose McGowan taking Shannen’s place.) H

olly went further, claiming that Alyssa told producers “it’s [Shannen] or me” and threatened to sue “over a hostile workplace environment.” (Alyssa’s mom, Lin, denied that she and her daughter caused tension on set.)

Shannen still resents her lingering troublemaker reputation. “People have not always been kind to Shannen,” says the source. “She’s always been honest and forthright, and clearly other people have had a problem with that.”

Totally Heartbroken

Her costars aren’t the only ones targeted by her truth bombs. Eight months after announcing her divorce from Kurt, Shannen is clarifying what really happened between the pair, claiming that, in January, just as she was about to undergo brain surgery to remove a tumor, she discovered her husband was in the midst of a two-year affair. It was one of her darkest hours. “I couldn’t go into that surgery with him there,” she said on the debut episode of “Let’s Be Clear.” “I felt so betrayed.”

A few days after her revelation, the actress shared a post on Instagram claiming a friend of Kurt’s had gone

to TMZ to report that the couple had been in an open marriage, and that she’d been aware of the affair. “This is an absolute lie,” Shannen clapped back. Despite the humiliation, she’s unwilling to let her ex off the hook in any way. “Kurt abandoned her when she needed him the most,” says the source. “She’s not going to let him off easy.”

She’s focused on the people she trusts most as she continues her health battle and says her goodbyes to loved ones. (In June, Shannen announced her cancer had spread to her bones.) “I’m not done with living. I’m not done with loving. I’m not done with creating. I’m not done with hopefully changing things for the better,” she said recently. Adds the source, “She just wants to say her piece and get everything out there while there’s still time.” 

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