Melissa McCarthy is no stranger to body-shamers, but rude comments have never stopped the actress from excelling in her career. The Can You Ever Forgive Me? star opened up about her experiences with being fat-shamed in an interview with InStyle, which will be the cover story for the magazine’s upcoming “Bada** Women” issue.
McCarthy recalled an ugly question from a movie critic during a 2011 press conference for her hit comedy, Bridesmaids.
“He kept asking, ‘Are you shocked that you actually work in this business at your tremendous size?'” the 48-year-old comedian said. “I just remember all the blood drained out of me. I thought, ‘With my tremendous size, I could tackle you so quickly.'”
McCarthy explained that she tried to steer away from the question, instead discussing the script and director Paul Feig, but the journalist kept bringing up her weight. After the conference, the producer apologized for the man’s behavior, but McCarthy said that she’s used to those remarks.
Justice had been served either way, though, because McCarthy also said that the journalist had later been fired.
“Not to be a jerk or single him out, but when John Goodman was heavier, did anybody ever talk about his girth?” she asked, noting that weight comments never seem to be thrown at men in the industry.
The actress also spoke of a similar incident at a press conference for another film of hers, People reported. A critic had continuously asked her why she is so “grotesque” — not wearing makeup, or doing her hair, and in yelling at people. McCarthy pointed out that the person he was referring to was only a character of hers (likely Shannon Mullins from The Heat, an unkempt and rude police officer).
“I was like, ‘I really want to answer your questions. I’m sorry I didn’t wear makeup in a part. I’m sorry I didn’t look pleasant for you. But I also don’t think you should be here writing about movies,'” McCarthy continued.
Despite the rude comments she has endured, McCarthy assured readers that she was never going to lash out or comply with standards, because that would mean the critic had won. Instead, she runs an inclusive clothing line that ranges in size from 4-28 — and encourages her two daughters to avoid pressure from those who want them to act polite and to be thin.
The actress even cites the criticism as a reason why she loves her career, according to E! News. She feels it’s important to see people who aren’t what society would deem “perfect” on-screen, because it is a more realistic depiction of everyday behavior.
“I still think it’s good to show people who aren’t so shined up and pretty and perfect,” she said.