Hayden Panettiere recently sat down with the online magazine A Girl’s World for some early promotion of I Love You Beth Cooper. According to AGW, the storyline goes: “the class nerd Denis Cooverman (Paul Rust) confesses all in his graduation speech. At the top of his list is his love and desire for class hottie Beth Cooper. For her own reasons, she shows up at his door promising to show him the time of his life!” It’s being compared to Superbad, but like the girl’s version of Superbad. Which is weird, because I tend to think most girls and women don’t really care for that gross-out comedy of Superbad, but whatever.
In the interview, Hayden is mostly talking about the film, and about her role on Heroes. But she does get some questions about Hollywood’s beauty standards, and the body image pressures she feels. Hayden is pretty cool about it all, talking about her cellulite, whether she’s a role model to young women, and she ends up saying “’I’m sorry, I’m a woman. I don’t know what you want me to tell you.”
AGW: There is so much pressure on young female stars like yourself to look or be “perfect”. How do you handle that?
Hayden: I can’t tell you how many times I’ve thanked God and my parents for raising me in a place that was so humbling and so outside any of that stuff. I mean I live criticism every day. I’d go walk my dogs and I used to walk them in my PJ’s and now I have to make sure I look half decent or else I’ll get trashed. Or like having cellulite on the back of your legs. ‘I’m sorry, I’m a woman. I don’t know what you want me to tell you’ [we laugh]. ‘I’m sorry. It’s not going to go away. I can’t do anything about it. I apologize if I offended you’.
AGW: Cellulite, the equal opportunity curse! But, you seem to be surviving the pressure…
Hayden: I think I came into it when Paris and Lindsay and all these girls were at their height of what they were doing and I would say it’s guilty by association. If you are a young female in Hollywood, you are guilty of everything that people say. People feel that they have a right to judge you and they haven’t even had a conversation with you and it’s scary. I have a body that girls can look at and go, ‘oh she’s not anorexically skinny. She looks healthy and she’s got cellulite, yeah!’
AGW: (by now we’re thinking about our own cellulite. Thank God we’re wearing long pants). Does this “role model” label drive you nuts then?
Hayden: I think the only problem with attempting to be a role model is the fact that you just want to go, ‘okay, I’ll be a role model for you. I’d love to, but don’t expect me to be perfect because I’m not and I do screw up and I do make mistakes and I can’t always think of everyone else and what they’re going to say’. Because at the end of the day the only person you can make happy is yourself. No matter whether it’s wrong or right or looks good or looks bad, somebody will hate it. Somebody will.