While Alicia Silverstone is best known for playing sassy teen queen Cher Horowitz in Clueless, it’s not her only high-profile role from her 1990s heyday. In 1997, she joined George Clooney and Chris O’Donnell to suit up as Batgirl in the superhero sequel Batman & Robin — a blockbuster that unfortunately had some critics taking aim at her curves.
In a new interview with British newspaper the Guardian, the now-43-year-old actress and animal rights activist addresses the body-shaming remarks she received over the critically panned Joel Schumacher film, which saw her wearing a sleek, tight-fitting costume. “Fatgirl,” a play on her character’s name, was one cruel rebuke.
Silverstone says it “definitely wasn’t my favorite film-making experience,” but notes that she recognized that the comments, while “hurtful,” shouldn’t be taken to heart.
“They would make fun of my body when I was younger,” she says. “It was hurtful but I knew they were wrong. I wasn’t confused. I knew that it was not right to make fun of someone’s body shape, that doesn’t seem like the right thing to be doing to a human.”
It wasn’t just body-shaming comments and questions about her bra size that she faced as a young star. Still a teen when Clueless was released in 1995, Silverstone was also subject to leering profiles, as well as unwelcome male attention.
“It was really just extreme how I was being talked to and talked about,” she says. “I think I just got really turned off by it.”
Of creepy behavior, she adds that she “felt empowered to be like, ‘Oh no you don’t!’”
“There were working circumstances that were less than favorable in terms of how things went down,” she admits later in the interview. “And no, I didn’t say ‘f*** you’ and come out like a warrior but I would just walk away and go, OK I know what that is and I’m done, I’m not going near that again.”
That also resulted in her taking on smaller acting projects in the theater while establishing herself as an activist and vegan influencer. Now the divorced mother to a nearly 9-year-old son, she’s starring in the comedy Bad Therapy.
Originally Published on Yahoo Entertainment