Model Emily Ratajkowski, who starred in the recent “Valerian” and “Grown Ups” movies, speaks to FOX411 about how being beloved for her looks is not always a good thing, and how fame can have a negative impact on one’s sense of self.
FOX411: Was you surprised that the question was about you being such a hot model?
Emily Ratajkowski: Yeah, I mean I’m very used to people talking about me because that’s sort of what I do. But I think the really important part was that, it was about what I meant to women in general. She’s not a robot or some kind of trope; she’s quite a deep and complex human being and I think that the interview was like asking a woman that question to determine her value in society. I don’t think that we can find value in everything that is curated for us in these magazines, in social media; if it’s meaningless, why do we buy it? Why do we take a job because we’re told it will make us beautiful, we will be fine if we do? I think there was a really powerful interview here about that notion of value and the fact that we’re being praised for things that don’t mean anything.
FOX411: So what about doing things for other people?
Ratajkowski: To me it’s like there’s literally a laser dot on my body and I don’t really know what’s happening but I feel like the way it’s being picked up by this kind of vast majority of the population of the world, it’s like somebody is getting something out of seeing me there and I don’t know who and what that is, and I don’t know if it’s validation of their brain or what, but I can only think of in my very tiny, dark, narrow bubble that it’s something good or something…if I were lucky enough to actually be considered attractive by some human beings. I would be honored to be able to do that.
I wasn’t just famous; I was famously sexy. And that’s one of the things that people think when they say it’s a gimmick, or when they see you photographed in this very skinny body or under this very tight dress and they see that it’s not that. But I think that that came from a place of true sexual desire, a real, real, huge desire to be appreciated for who I am, to be beautiful in my own right.
FOX411: You talked before about how one of the big things that you have learned as an actress is empathy and I imagine that empathy led you to make this movie about a young man who has lost his way. Is that empathy something that you constantly strive for as an actress as opposed to just acting out a role?
Ratajkowski: Yeah, I think any sort of wide-eyed innocent that is just sort of figured it out and knows that what they are doing is the right thing is really rare, so it’s something that I’ve sort of taken as a gift, I’ve taken that as such a power for the female characters that I’m given. I don’t think that all women can be like that, I don’t think that all women have that thought in their heads, but I think for me it’s something that I’m very eager to communicate, and so that’s kind of been my mantra in my career.
FOX411: Is there anything that you want people to know about you before reading “Grown Ups 2”?
Ratajkowski: That I am a human being.