Mara Wilson35, reflected on her career as a child actress and the inappropriate ways she was contacted by men at the time, in a new interview promoting her memoir. The Matilda star, who released Good Girls Don’t last month, wrote about the ins and outs of fame at a young age and how it left her being sexualized by some people, which led to “sketchy” situations over the years. She also explained that her mother, who died in 1995, when she was only eight years old, looked out for her, but some bosses still asked her to stay on movie sets overtime instead of asking her parents.
“If she didn’t like the way that something was going, she would not hesitate to make her concerns known,” Mara said about her mother, in an interview with The Guardian. “I had people sending me inappropriate letters and posting things about me online. I made the mistake of Googling myself when I was 12 and saw things that I couldn’t unsee.”
Mara further explained that her head was on other people’s bodies on various porn sites and it left a lasting negative impression on her. “I don’t think you can be a child star without there being some kind of lasting damage,” she said. ‘The thing that people assume is that Hollywood is inherently corrupt, and there’s something about being on film sets that destroys you.”
“For me, that was not necessarily true,” she continued. “I always felt safe on film sets. There were definitely some sketchy, questionable things that happened at times – adults that told dirty jokes, or sexually harassed people in front of me.”
“People who did things like ask me if it was OK if I worked overtime, instead of asking my parents, but I never felt unsafe,” she added. “I think that’s because I worked with a lot of really wonderful directors, who were used to working with children.”
In addition to Matilda, Mara was well known for her other popular roles in Mrs. Doubtfire and the Christmas remake, Miracle on 34th Street. In her new interview, she further explained that once she hit puberty, she noticed her career started diminishing. She was eventually diagnosed with OCD by a psychiatrist and came out as bisexual in 2016. Although she still does some acting, her work now mainly consists of writing. Before her new memoir was published, she released a different memoir called Where Am I Now? True Stories of Girlhood and Accidental Famein 2016, and currently hosts the fiction podcast Welcome to Night Vale.
As far as taking on big acting roles in television and/or film again, Mara said she’s not so sure, since she doesn’t know if movie directors would want to work with a “short, curvy, Jewish brunette.” She added that she doesn’t want them telling her, “you need to lose 30lb and get a nose job,” because she now defines herself by “my own goals, my own relationships, my own life.”
Good Girls Don’t is available to read on Scribd.
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