Megan Fox is as much of a 2000s icon as they come. From her start in “Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen” to the “Transformers” series and cult film “Jennifer’s Body,” Fox left her mark on Hollywood — and became a bona fide sex symbol, whether she wanted to or not.
Fox famously recalled her small part in Michael Bay’s “Bad Boys II” where she danced in a bikini, cowboy hat, and high heels under a waterfall at age 15 during a now-infamous interview on “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” She later went on to work with Bay for the “Transformers” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” films, and while since reconciling with the director, she voiced the suffocation she felt being typecast in Hollywood.
“I think that I was ahead of the #MeToo movement by almost a decade,” Fox told Glamour UK in a May cover story. “I was always speaking out against some of the abusive, misogynistic, patriarchal things that were going on in Hollywood back in 2008 and 2009, way before people were ready to embrace that or tolerate it. And I actually got ridiculed for doing it. I think people just have had time to review that, in retrospect.”
And even after talking about her “genuinely harrowing experiences in a ruthlessly misogynistic industry,” Fox wasn’t embraced by the feminist movement, either. Even after starring opposite Amanda Seyfried in Diablo Cody’s high school slasher “Jennifer’s Body,” Fox’s character was written off as “shallow” by critics.
“I’ve never felt completely included in the feminist community and I do still think that it’s tricky in an awful way,” the “Good Mourning” actress added. “Whatever I provoke in them is not something that they can digest very well. And so that comes back on me, as they reject me for those reasons. And I just don’t think that I was a very sympathetic victim.”
She continued, “I wasn’t allowed to be a human, because I was a topic of conversation and gossip and punch lines. I was essentially in hiding for several years of my life.”
Fox later shared that she endured a “psychological breakdown” amid being in the public eye.
“I don’t know if the psychological breakdown was strictly related to being objectified,” Fox said. “It was more related to just being dehumanized and criticized and judged constantly.”
Fox described “dealing with astronomical levels of fame” as a “type of trauma” in itself, especially when celebrities are treated as larger-than-life figures, not human beings.
“I don’t think people understand that we’ve come to this place where we grasp, ‘Bullying is bad. Children shouldn’t be bullied. It leads to self-hate. And eventually in some cases leads to suicide,'” Fox explained. “But then when it comes to a celebrity, all of that is thrown out the window and people spend so much of their time bullying celebrities.”
As for her personal life, Fox is still grappling with the “rules” of modern feminism.
“I was being celebrated as being a feminist until I had the nerve to call my [fiancé Machine Gun Kelly] ‘Daddy,’’” Fox said, citing a now-viral MTV VMAs red carpet moment. “And a lot of people got upset about that, which I think is a funny conversation to actually have, because that goes into allowing women to be…women. Allowing us to experience what we want in life, what we like. That is feminism.”