It's no secret Hollywood has depressing standards when it comes to women's body image norms, but Yellowjackets star Melanie Lynskey is claiming to have endured some of the worst while on the set of one of her earlier movies. In a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the actress opened up about the body shaming she faced during her early days in Hollywood, revealing that she was pressured to lose weight on the set of 2000's Coyote Ugly.
Joining her co-stars Juliette Lewis, Christina Ricci and Tawny Cypress for the THR profile, Lynskey shared how production staff scrutinized her physical appearance. According to the actress, "all the girls had this regimen they had to go on," something she said was "ridiculous." Lynskey noted that she "was already starving myself and as thin as I could possibly be for this body, and I was still a [size] four," recalling how there were "already people putting a lot of Spanx on me in wardrobe fittings and being very disappointed when they saw me."
"The costume designer being like, 'Nobody told me there would be girls like you.' Really intense feedback about my physicality, my body, people doing my makeup and being like, 'I'm just going to help you out by giving you a bit more of a jawline and stuff,'" she continued. "Just the feedback was constantly like, 'You're not beautiful. You're not beautiful.' In your early 20s, so much of it is about beauty, and how people respond to you, and do people want to f- you?"
Lynskey's troubling experiences with body shaming go further back than 2000, though, with the actress revealing in a May interview with Vulture that faced similar pressure following her breakout role in 1994's Heavenly Creatures. Lynskey was just a teenager at the time, though she said she was constantly reminded that she was "not the things you needed to be. thin, confident, pretty. Mostly thin. Mostly thin." Lynskey explained, "there was a certain pleasant energy they wanted people to have. Unchallenging. And I wasn't successful doing that."
After decades of facing body shamers, Lynskey told THR that she feels "very protective" of her young Yellowjackets co-stars, who play teenage versions of the adult characters. Lynskey said that "at the beginning of production, I sent them all an email, and I just was like, 'Whatever you need, if you need a voice, if you need someone to go to the producers for you, whatever you need,' and they were kind of like, 'Cool. Thanks' They're fine." Along with Lynskey, Ricci, and Cypress, Yellowjackets also stars Ella Purnell, Samantha Hanratty, Sophie Thatcher, Jasmin Savoy Brown, Sophie Nélisse, Steven Krueger, and Warren Kole. The hit Showtime series has already been renewed for a second season.