Florence Pugh Says Execs Told Her to "Change Her Weight" Early in Her Career

Florence Pugh is opening up about a crossroads she faced early in her career.

In a new interview with The Telegraph, the Don't Worry Darling actress recalled the early days of her career, when she was told to change her appearance to fit into the Hollywood machine. After the star made her debut in the Carol Morley's mystery drama The Falling, the British star landed a role as an emerging pop star in a television pilot.

"I felt very lucky and grateful, and couldn’t believe that I had got this top-of-the-game job," she said of the role, but her outlook changed once her bosses on the project said that she would need a makeover for the role.

"All the things that they were trying to change about me – whether it was my weight, my look, the shape of my face, the shape of my eyebrows – that was so not what I wanted to do, or the industry I wanted to work in," Pugh said. "I’d thought the film business would be like [my experience of making] The Falling, but actually, this was what the top of the game looked like, and I felt I’d made a massive mistake."

After the pilot wasn't picked up, Pugh flew back to England. She told the outlet that she felt like her career was over, but then she got an opportunity that would change the trajectory of her life.

"Then two weeks later, I had an audition for Lady Macbeth. And that made me fall back in love with cinema – the kind of cinema that was a space where you could be opinionated, and loud, and I’ve stuck by that. I think it’s far too easy for people in this industry to push you left and right. And I was lucky enough to discover when I was 19 what kind of a performer I wanted to be," she said.

In Harper's BAZAAR's September 2022 cover story, Pugh reminisced on her roles so far, from The Falling and Lady Macbeth to her breakout 2019 performances in Ari Aster's Midsommar and Greta Gerwig's Little Women.

"I guess all of my movies have that element of women being forced into a corner, forced into an opinion, forced into a way of life. And then finally, something cracks," she said, adding, "I love playing a distressed woman."

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