Elisha Cuthbert’s portrayal of a former p*rn star in the 2004 film The Girl Next Door cemented her status as a sex icon. The actress is now exposing how that attention turned toxic nearly two decades later.
Cuthbert, 39, discussed how studio executives encouraged her at that point in her career to appear in men’s magazines like Maxim and FHM, which are notorious for photoshoots that oversexualize young actors. Cuthbert was speaking during an interview on the Broad Ideas podcast with Rachel Bilson.
She recalled the early 2000s when it came to posing for men’s magazines: “There truly wasn’t any choice back then. “The [film] studio wants you to do that,” the person said.
The 24 alum has been on many “hot lists” for these publications over the years, including one in 2013 where Maxim rated her the “most attractive woman in television.” She claims that, looking back, titles like those never really contained anything substantial.
“I didn’t win an Olympic medal, after all. It was merely a list that an arbitrary publication decided to make “She spoke. “Those items are in my bio, which anyone may read. Actually, they have no bearing on me personally or professionally.”
Cuthbert concedes that these kinds of photo shootings were typical at the time.
“We sort of found ourselves in a situation where that was actually taking place at the moment. For God’s sake, Halle Berry was doing it, and Jennifer Aniston was doing it “She said. We were likely too young to be subjected to that and under that kind of strain.
Cuthbert noted that many of those images are still in use, which is a problem she frequently encounters.
“I have to explain this to my children. These unusual hair extensions and this strange clothing. And you know what else is so absurd? I’m not even sure how much of those images, which appear to have been airbrushed, are actually accurate. I was only entering my 20s. Although I didn’t look horrible, did I seem that way?”
But there is a bright side.
Cuthbert claimed that she utilises those experiences to teach her young children, son Fable, 6, and daughter Zaphire, 4, both of whom she and her husband, retired NHL star Dion Phaneuf, share, the value of self-love.
“I would be so much kinder to myself if I could take what I know now about having two children and go back,” she said. “Fortunately, I never struggled with my weight or anything like that, but I did feel pressure to live up to everyone’s expectations of us, which included being the “hottest lady in the world.” What’s it like? I’m a performer. I’m not Gisele Bundchen, are you?”
Cuthbert has made a conscious effort to take better care of her body, mind, and health in the years since.
With kids, a busy life, and advanced age, she remarked, “I’m working hard to keep in shape and be as healthy as I possibly can.” Living up to these ludicrous expectations, it’s just not reality. “I feel like there are better methods to filter that those times of the FHMs… that was so wild.”
The actress had the chance to showcase what a genuine mother looks like in her most recent part as a mother of two in the spooky horror film The Cellar.
“It was the first movie when I actually had the ability to think, “This is how I appear at this age.” Since she’s going through hell and back in [the role], there was really no purpose in my wearing a lot of makeup to look like this lovely mother of two, “She spoke up. “It was good to finally move my work in a more mature direction and have it match my current age rather than trying to play this role in this overly romanticised depiction of [a woman at 39]. I wanted it to feel as unpolished and genuine as I could. It’s challenging to do and maintain as something you want to look at.”