Naya Rivera to make posthumous appearance in Netflix baking show

She will appear as a guest judge on the new season of 'Sugar Rush: Extra Sweet'

Naya Rivera will be making a posthumous appearance in the new series of Netflix baking show Sugar Rush: Extra Sweet.

Best known for her breakout role as Santana Lopez in Glee, Rivera died earlier this month after going missing at Lake Piru in Southern California.

Now, it’s been revealed that she will appear posthumously as a guest judge in the third season of the baking competition, which premieres in both the US and UK today (July 31).

Appearing alongside the show’s host Hunter March and professional chef judges Candace Nelson and Adriano Zumbo, Rivera’s guest role was filmed back in February, shortly before the coronavirus pandemic halted production across the entertainment industry.

According to Deadline, Netflix had been in consultation with Rivera’s manager over the use of footage ahead of the new season’s release. With the family’s blessing, the episode featuring the Glee star will air as planned with an on-screen dedication.

News of Rivera’s final TV appearance comes after numerous tributes have been made in her honour, including one from her ex-fiancée, rapper Big Sean.

“Rest In Peace Naya, God Bless your Soul!” Sean wrote on Instagram.

“Thank you for blessing us all with your talent and presence,” he continued. “You are a hero! Not just because of how you saved your son, also because of the barriers you knocked down for so many people to make them feel confident in themselves and to stand tall and be proud when they couldn’t achieve that on their own.”

He added: “I’m still grieving and in shock, I can’t believe this is real. I’m praying for you and your family and I know your (sic) watching over them and protecting them. Rest In Peace Naya.”

Rivera’s ex-husband, Ryan Dorsey, also took to social media to share a few words, writing: “This is so unfair… There’s not enough words to express the hole left in everyone’s hearts.

“I can’t believe this is life now. I don’t know if I’ll ever believe it. You were just here… We were just in the back swimming with Josey the day before. Life just isn’t fair. I don’t know what to say.”