Amber Tamblyn's Open Letter Reveals Pressure to Lose Weight: “I Had a Full Anxiety Attack After the Dress Fitting”
In a powerful essay, the actress opens up about the stress she has felt preparing for red carpet events.
Leading up to the Golden Globes tonight, there's been a lot of buzz about Time's Up, a protest against sexual harassment in Hollywood that started in response to the #MeToo movement.
One of the many women sharing their stories is Amber Tamblyn. Today, the actress penned a powerful essay in the New York Times (where she is a contributing writer) about the intense pressure she's felt in the past as a woman walking the red carpet. "Years ago when I was nominated for a Golden Globe for best actress in a television drama, I had a full anxiety attack after the dress fitting, even though I had found a beautiful dress that fit me nicely," she writes.
Tamblyn recalls sobbing in her car from the stress of preparing for the big Hollywood event. "The anxiety I was feeling wasn’t about the dress itself. It was about the fulfillment of the obligations of the dress," she says, adding that much of this anxiety stemmed from being criticized for her weight. "[A director] said the film studio would provide a trainer and a meal plan for me and it would be great if I could lose roughly five pounds before we began shooting."
In the essay, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants actress calls out the unrealistic roles women are "assigned" to play: From frilly dresses to airbrushed limbs, she notes, actresses are often told how they should look like and never asked how they want to look.
Tamblyn adds that what actresses wear to red carpet events sends an important message, and this year, many of the attendees (both male and female) are wearing all black in solidarity with the Time's Up movement and as a "statement of action."
"I have often wondered what would happen if actresses stood in solidarity with a singular, powerful choice for just one night," Tablyn writes. "What would that even look like? To uniformly reject our lifelong objectification and say: Enough. We belong to no one."