Big Bang Theory star Kaley Cuoco, from all outward appearances, was still enjoying wedded bliss to Ryan Sweeting when she made waves late in 2014 when she told Redbook that she did not consider herself a feminist. Revealing that she cooked five nights a week for her new husband, Cuoco acknowledged the hard work of women’s activists who came before her, but said, “I was never that feminist girl demanding equality.”
Cuoco eventually apologized with a social media post that implied her comments were taken out of context, but the words had already made their impact. Now, after splitting from Sweeting and turning 30, Cuoco is telling Cosmopolitan she can relate to the word “feminist,” in part because of the prominence she’s achieved as the result of her turn on The Big Bang Theory.
“Of course I’m a f***ing feminist. Look at me. I bleed feminism. I get equal pay to my male costars on a big show, I have my own home, I’m as independent as you could possibly be.”
Her earlier comments came at the beginning of a year when wage equality was a big issue. Patricia Arquette addressed the income disparity between women and men as part of her Best Supporting Actress Oscar speech. The issue had been at the forefront of Hollywood gossip since a hack of Sony documents revealed Jennifer Lawrence was paid less than her male co-stars, a fact that Lawrence addressed in a first-person essay posted on Lenny.
But, even if Cuoco would argue that she’s remained consistent when it comes to her views on feminism, she’s nonetheless gone through some major changes in the past two years.
Cuoco told Cosmopolitan that the breakup with Sweeting has made her look at marriage differently, but not love. She expressed some reluctance to fall head over heels again — a surprising admission given that Cuoco famously married Sweeting after a short courtship of only a few months.
“[What happened] changes the way I look at marriage, and that makes me sad. It does not change the way that I look at love. I cannot wait to be in love again. I don’t feel like I am ready yet… which is so different for me. I dive into everything.”
Fans of The Big Bang Theory know that the cast will welcome a baby next year — at least on screen. Howard and Bernadette are expecting their first child. It would not be a stretch to envision Kaley Cuoco in maternity wear; Cuoco’s character Penny finally married her longtime boyfriend Leonard, played by Cuoco’s real-life ex Johnny Galecki, and a child seems like a natural next step.
Cuoco told Cosmopolitan she wants to be a mother — and knows how to handle the rumors that she and Galecki are again getting cozy behind the scenes.
“Johnny and I are very close now, but the worst part about that is I don’t want stories like that, especially during this divorce, to hurt my ex. We have nods with each other. Johnny and I do this thing like a nod that says, ‘I got you. I get it.'”
“I thought I’d have a baby by now! You see your life going one way, and then it’s the direct opposite way. I’m waking up going, Oh my god, my life just flipped upside down.”
New episodes of The Big Bang Theory air Thursdays on CBS. The series, currently in Season 9, has been renewed through to the end of Season 10.
[Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images]