“Succession” Emmy winner Sarah Snook said on a recent episode of BBC Radio 4’s “Today” program that she was too “young and naive” to push back against a film producer who openly berated her for eating cake on set. It was one of two instances of body shaming that Snook remembered during an interview with The Sunday Times, published earlier this month. Snook said she agreed to make concessions to her dieting as she figured that “in order for me to be successful, I have to be all the things that aren’t me.”
According to Snook, a casting director told her after she booked a film role: “We don’t really want you because you’re a nobody, but the director and the writer think you’re good for the role. So what we’ll do is change all of you so that you’re marketable: We’ll whiten your teeth, darken your hair, we’ll give you a personal trainer so you can lose weight and look the part.”
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Snook also recalled a situation where a film producer chastised her in front of the cast and crew for having the “tiniest bit of chocolate cake.” A costume designer intervened and encouraged her to continue eating. “And all the while I am dying inside,” she remembered.
Asked by the BBC about why she never pushed back against the body shaming, Snook responded: “I was too young and naive.”
“That’s the unfortunate situation when a person is in a position of authority taking advantage, mindlessly saying something that could be taken the wrong way and taken on in a certain context that holds with that person for the rest of their life,” she added.
Snook is one of several actors in recent weeks to speak out against injustices she faced while trying to become an actor. “Ted Lasso” Emmy winner Hannah Waddingham revealed to the BBC earlier this month that her drama teacher once told her she would “never work on screen.”
“I had one drama teacher that said to the whole class: ‘Oh, Hannah will never work on screen because she looks like one side of her face has had a stroke,’” Waddingham said. But the insult didn’t deter her. “I thought, ‘I will do. Come hell or high water, I will work on screen,’” she added.
To Snook’s point, Waddingham said the insult from her drama teacher created “a complex for years.” The “Succession” star concluded that she no longer follows any dieting instructions imposed on her by producers or others.
“I eat whatever I want, it’s my own body and my own choice,” she said.
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