Is 2021 the year of Megan Fox’s comeback? It feels as though the Jennifer’s Body actress has been everywhere recently: on magazine covers, at red carpet events and making headlines for her bold style choices and public relationship with musician Machine Gun Kelly.
Of course, it’s not just her newfound romance that’s resulted in Fox, once again, taking centre stage. It’s to do with the public’s reckoning with how celebrity women were treated in the spotlight in the ‘90s and early aughts, as paparazzi and tabloid culture skyrocketed. There’s the #FreeBritney movement, which began after fans started questioning Spears’ 12-year conservatorship online and has since resulted in a legal battle between the pop star and her family, and Paris Hilton’s tell-all documentary, in which she detailed the abuse she suffered as a child at boarding school.
Post-#MeToo, when we view films we’re aware of the way they’re so often portrayed through the male gaze. But when Fox burst onto our screens as a brunette bombshell mechanic in Transformers a decade earlier, in 2007, the conversation still had a long way to go. In fact, even her 2012 role in This is 40 was publicly questioned by Emily Ratajkowski earlier this year, who said the movie “is not ageing well,” due to the way Fox’s character was ogled at in the film.
Now, in a new interview, Fox says that during her early career she hated fame and battled “psychological demons,” explaining she was often forced to dress in a way that was “less sexy” so that she would be taken “more seriously” in the industry.
In a video for WhoWhatWear, Fox spoke about the controlling nature of the industry, revealing that when she was starting out “everyone wanted [her] to look a certain way,” adding that the expectations placed on women in the film industry can mean there comes a pressure from stylists to dress in a way that is “more conservative.”
“Everyone wanted me to look like a movie star so that I could land this role,” she said while looking at a photo taken shortly before she was cast in the cult classic Jennifer’s Body. “I had a real problem with authority when I was young,” she explained. “I resent people trying to tell me how to look, or act, or speak.”
“I’m much better about it now,” she said “But at this point, if you tried to push me in a certain direction, I would go the opposite way.”
Fox spoke about how helpful her current stylist, Maeve Reilly (who also counts Hailey Bieber as a client), has been in helping her find a style that she feels comfortable and sexy in, saying Reilly takes a different approach to her stylists of the past who had tried to “hide” her.
“She’s not trying to hide me. People were trying to hide me and make me less sexy so that I could be taken more seriously,” she explained. “And I don’t give a single f**k about that. I just want the look to be right.”