Megan Fox Says This Old Jimmy Kimmel Interview Shows How She Was Sexualized
"That was a microcosm of my whole life," she said in a new interview. "It was just very dark."
In recent years, the conversation about the way Hollywood treats young women like Paris Hilton or Britney Spears has shifted, going from sexualizing and finger-wagging to sympathy and newfound respect. But one woman who found fame at a young age, Megan Fox, says she's taken even longer to earn that, despite spending years fighting for it. Now 35 and a mom of three, the woman who shot to stardom in Michael Bay's Transformers movies is speaking out in a new interview with The Washington Post about how she was mistreated in the industry—and she says one interview in particular showcases the "very dark" world she experienced. Read on to find out why Megan Fox says this 2009 interview on Jimmy Kimmel Live! has stuck with her for more than a decade.
Megan Fox said this 2009 Jimmy Kimmel interview was a microcosm of her "whole interaction with Hollywood."
In June 2009, before Fox was fired from the third Transformers movie for feuding with Bay and comparing him to Hitler (a comment she's since apologized for), she appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! and talked about her first time working with the director
Fox told Kimmel about her cameo in Bay's Bad Boys II, which was four years before the first Transformers movie. As Fox recalled, when Bay was told that she was only 15 and therefore couldn't sit at a bar in her scene, she said that the director decided to have her dance in a patriotic bikini, cowboy hat, and six-inch heels under a waterfall instead. In the Kimmel clip, both the audience and host laugh at Fox's story.
"I was in 10th grade. So that's sort of a microcosm of how Bay's mind works," Fox said. "Yeah, well, that's really a microcosm of how all our minds work, but some of us have the decency to repress those thoughts and pretend that they don't exist," Kimmel responded.
"That was a microcosm of my whole life and whole interaction with Hollywood," she recalled to The Washington Post. "It was just very dark."
The Fox-Kimmel interview went viral in 2020, but this is Fox's first comment on it.
In June 2020, Fox's interview with Kimmel went viral when the late-night host was also under fire for previously donning blackface. While Kimmel addressed the latter issue at the time, he did not comment on the 2009 interview with Fox. (Best Life reached out to Jimmy Kimmel Live! for a response, but did not immediately hear back.)
In a statement posted to Instagram in June 2020 after the interview started making the rounds, Fox responded to the reignited spotlight on her relationship with Bay, but did not address her 2009 appearance with Kimmel directly.
Now, Fox is shedding light on why the interview with Kimmel meant so much more than many may have realized. "I was so lost and trying to understand, like, how am I supposed to feel value or find purpose in this horrendous, patriarchal, misogynistic h*** that was Hollywood at the time?" Fox told The Washington Post.
Fox says she's proud of herself for speaking out, even though it wasn't always received well.
Fox told The Washington Post, "I had already been speaking out against it and everyone, including other women, received me in a very negative way for doing it." Still, in hindsight, she's proud of herself for being open about how women are mistreated in Hollywood "a decade before it became popular."
"When I was fighting, even back then I felt like I was connected to Joan of Arc and all of these women who've been persecuted all throughout time," Fox said. "I was like, 'I'm aligned with every woman that's ever gone through this since the beginning of f***ing history.'"
And she said she didn't know if she'd be alive to see her moment of vindication.
In The Washington Post feature, author Ilana Kaplan says Fox "always knew there would be a time when people would acknowledge how she had been wronged by the industry she just didn't know if she'd be alive to see it."
Fox told the reporter that she isn't "a particularly sympathetic character," and she knows that there is a "pervasive perception of [her] as a shallow succubus." But, she explains, that "started to change more recently as people revisited some of my interviews, listened to me speak and started to see me in a different way."
Read the full interview with Fox on The Washington Post.