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Dakota Johnson Admits Generational Divide With Younger Co-Stars: "They Annoy Me"

The Madame Web star explained her complicated relationship with her cast mates.

She loves them! But they annoy her… But she loves them! Those are Dakota Johnson's conflicted thoughts on her Madame Web co-stars Isabela Merced, Celeste O'Connor, and Sydney Sweeney. Johnson stars in the Marvel movie as Cassandra Webb, a paramedic who ends up on a super-powered adventure after she begins experiencing premonitions. This leads her to becoming the titular Madame Web, but the film also focuses on her attempts to protect a group of younger girls from the future she has seen in her visions.

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And while the movie relies on Cassandra being older than the three girls, Johnson has said she felt the divide between herself and her co-stars off-camera, too—though it's hard to tell just how much it really bothered her. Johnson is 34 years old, while Merced is 22, O'Connor is 25, and Sweeney is 26. This means that while Johnson is a millennial, her co-stars are part of Gen Z.

During a recent appearance on Late Night, host Seth Meyers asked Johnson about her Gen Z co-stars, and she said while laughing, "I love them, and they annoy me… and I love them."

Meyers then asked when Johnson "felt the oldest" on set, and she responded, "All the time. Like, every second of the day. I'm not that much older than them."

Johnson also spoke out about her co-stars during an interview with E! News, in which she noted that they have a group chat without her.

"I don't think they include me. I'm older than them, and they make sure that I'm aware of that," she said.

The younger actors told E! that they do have a group chat called "The Boo Crew." They also praised Johnson and said that they saw her as someone to look up to.

"I've been a fan of hers since I was a lot younger," Sweeney said. The White Lotus star explained that when she first met Johnson, she thought, "'Do I say hi? What do I do?' I was so excited."

Merced said that Johnson was "like a big sister," while O'Connor said, "It was genuinely so refreshing to have that kind of leadership. It made me so much more comfortable."

Johnson told E! that she didn't think her co-stars needed advice from her, and she praised Sweeney in particular. "She's such an amazing actress, and really has such an incredible work ethic," the Persuasion star said.

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Johnson also spoke about the three actors in an interview with Capital FM in which she said that the three younger women became "really close," and that it was "sweet and wonderful" to see their "camaraderie." In this interview she said that there was another cast group chat—one which she was a part of. Unlike "The Boo Crew," this one was identified simply with a spider emoji.

Speaking out about being an outcast among her 20-something co-stars is not the only time that Johnson has expressed feeling left out recently. During the same Late Night interview, she talked about working on the finale episode of The Office, which aired in 2013. She called the experience "the worst time of my life," in part because she said she spent two weeks working on the show just to "barely" appear in one episode.

Meyers told Johnson that everyone on set must have been feeling sad about the show ending after nine seasons. She responded, "They were sad, and also there were weird dynamics that had been going on for the last 10 years. Some people didn't speak to each other. And I'm coming in like, 'Hahaha, so excited to be here!'"

She added, "And no one wanted to talk to me. No one gave a [expletive]."

Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
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