Christina Ricci on wearing a bikini for her new tv show: “I’m, like, totally dieting”


The adorably weird Christina Ricci covers the September issue of Nylon magazine to promote a few of her upcoming projects. One of them is a movie, Bucky Larson: Born to be a Star, that arrives in theaters this weekend and in which Ricci plays a waitress. The other project just happens to be her upcoming television series, “Pan Am,” a 1960s set drama that will air on ABC. I get the feeling that this show is kind of like “Mad Men” only with airline stewardesses, which means that we’ll get a hefty dose of fashion throwbacks and lots of commentary on the social mores of the era. It could be fun, no? Anyway, Ricci has a lot to say about the show, fashion, diet and exercise issues, the aging process, and why she’s heading to television:

On The Fashion Element Of “Pan Am”: “My mother was a model in that era, so I grew up looking at images of her. When I was a little girl I was sort of obsessed with the fact that my mother had been on the cover of Seventeen and I always wanted to look at her book, so I think it was ingrained in my mind.” Is she nostalgic for that era? “You know, it’s a lot of fun to be able to dress up like that, but picture today, in this heat, you have to put f&#*ing nylons on every day of your life. And the way they did their hair … today’s it’s such a luxury to get to throw a little dress on. I was looking at myself on my way out the door and I was like, ‘Your underwear is showing, but you don’t have any time. Leave.’ If this was the ’60s, I wouldn’t be able to do that.”

On Vintage: “I asked my stylist: ‘What’s the rule for when something becomes vintage and not just, like, last season?’ Seven years, apparently. So, seven years later I’ve brought my Alaia dresses out again.”

On The Women Of “Pan Am”: The ladies of “Pan Am,” described in the first episode as a “new breed of woman” by a young pilot, were educated, often tri-lingual girls in their twenties (“you were aged-out at 32 in those days,” says Ricci) with progressive, sexually liberated attitudes and model looks to boot. “They were the girls whose lives didn’t really revolve around men. They were having lives that were very much based on their own merits, their own education. Yes, a little bit on how they looked — weigh-ins, all that kind of stuff — but they were in something like the top 10 highest paid jobs with the men, and they got to travel and see the world in a way that at the time, people in America, let alone women in America, had no concept of. The second episode we got to Jakarta, and it’s like, What other women, other than stewardesses at that time, knew what Jakarta looked like?”

On Her Figure: “We all have to be in bikinis in the second episode,” she says of the show. Some of the girls are like, ‘I’m not dieting, screw it!’ And I’m, like, totally dieting; I’m eating protein and vegetables. And I’m doing my Pilates exercises at night, when I’m watching television.” She orders an omelet and a Diet Coke. “My Pilates instructor wrote out three different routines for me,” she continues. “I’ve worked out, OK, this one I can do in my dressing room, and this one in the studio at lunch … It’s going to be pretty funny. People are going to be like, ‘Um, Christina’s doing her thrust-walks in the hallway again.’”

There was a time when Ricci’s teenage weight fluctuations and battle with anorexia were well documented in the press, but these days the 31-year-old sees maintaining her figure as a pressure she, not the industry, puts on herself. “I’ve been doing this for a really long time and I used to hate feeling insecure. It’s the worst feeling in the world. So, I do a lot of things in advance so that I know I won’t have to feel like crap about myself. I think probably, in my late twenties, I became a lot more like, I’ll do what I can to make sure I look the way I like to look. But in the end, there’s only so much you can do and I’m not going to punish myself because I don’t look like the average person in a bikini.”

On Why She’s Doing TV: “They don’t make as many movies as they used to, so it’s a lot harder now and there’s no mid-range either. They either make these huge, big-budget ones or these tiny ones that may never see the light of day, or with some really unscrupulous people who take you to some far out location and then all of a sudden you get there and you’re like, ‘Who am I trapped out here with?’ So, it’s kind of difficult. And you know some of the best writing is on television, and I have to say, I spend most of my time watching TV. For years I’ve been saying I wanted to do television.”

On Sleeping 10 Hours Per Day: “Because I’m the oldest member of the cast, and we shoot in HD, so I’m like Dude! I don’t want to be, like, scary old-face. I’ve been using eye cream and all that sh-t since I was 18 because I knew, I just knew that age was going to walk right across my face. I use Proactiv because the lovely thing about my face now that I’m in my early 30s, I’m aging, but I’m also dealing with acne. And now – this is disgusting – but I get it on my back. I’m like, What am I? A pubescent boy?”

Admittedly, that last part really was gross, but I sort of appreciate that a Hollywood actress is willing to admit that she suffers from backne. Like, Gwyneth would never admit to such a pedestrian affliction, right? Even though and despite all of her privileged trappings, Goop really and truly does experience breakouts.

In another Goop comparison note, I like that Christina manages to admit that she worries about her weight, and works out/diets like the rest of us have to while also not sounding like a superiority freak about it. Instead of the whole, “I can be 38 and have two kids and wear a bikini is because I work my [expletive] ass off” nonsense, Christina phrases it in a self-depreciating way that also comes off as genuine. Yes, she has weight issues and won’t pretend not to obsess about her body at times, but she doesn’t go so far to talk about how exceptional she is just because she puts the work in, you know?

At any rate, “Pan Am” actually does sound like it might be an interesting show to watch, and I’ll probably check it out if I can wrestle the remote control away from my kid.




Nylon scans courtesy of The Fashion Spot

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59 Responses to “Christina Ricci on wearing a bikini for her new tv show: “I’m, like, totally dieting””

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  1. vale says:

    Ugh I’m 27 and getting backne too. I don’t know what to do about it! Anyone else?

  2. gee says:

    I’ve liked her since Casper. I’ll definitely be checking it out!

  3. Liz says:

    She looks absolutely beautiful. And interesting. She’s an enigma in the world she lives in

  4. Liz says:

    @Vale: I found that Roaccutane was the only thing that helped, but the side effects were pretty severe for me.

    It makes your skin incredibly dry and sensitive (no sun, no computer screen without sunscreen, no waxing any part of your body) but it did work for me. Also, it lowered my mood for a long time.

  5. blc says:

    she is so super cute. i don’t know about Pan Am but i’d be willing to give it a chance after reading that interview

  6. omj says:

    I’m totally going to sound like an ad, but that’s OK, because it works for me… The month before I turned thirty my skin reverted to a teenage nightmare- big ass oily pores, and huge icky zits ALL FREAKING OVER. Gross. L’Oreal Go 360 with the scrubby thingy worked wonders on my shoulders, back and face. A tad expensive for the amount I use- I go though a container about every month- but I will not go without.
    I thought I was done with that pimple crap, but noooo. Freaking thirties!

  7. hottathanholywatta says:

    she’s refreshingly smart, articulate and brutally honest…what a breath of fresh air from all those talentless, useless and famewhoring reality losers

  8. layla says:

    Its quite common for women in their late 20′s/early 30′s to experience acne breakouts even if during their teens they didn’t.

    Its hormones shifting and heading into new cycles. Just like our metabolism adjust/change in this age range, so too do our hormones.

    Instead of using medications with horrible side effects, ride it out (yes, it sucks, but it happens) and let your hormones adjust naturally.

    Eat clean, drink lots of water, exercise. Positive side effects only! :)

  9. LeManda says:

    Love her!
    I’m actually looking forward to this show. It caught me interest by the styling while watching the commercial. Then I saw Ricci was in it and i was sold!

  10. Bodhi says:

    I LOVE her!! She Mostly) successfully transitioned from child star to adult actor & didn’t leave a swath of bad behavior & gossip in her wake. I think she is a breath of fresh air, esp compared to other child stars who tried to transition to adult actors *coughlohancough*

  11. ElleGin says:

    I love her to bits. I’m watching that Sparkles film for her and the other two ladies.

  12. serena says:

    actually, she does not sound healthy at all. she sounds like a neurotic anorexic.

  13. Sarah says:

    She is gorgeous and her body is bangin! When I think about my “ideal” body, it’s hers!

  14. 4Real says:

    The pill along with montly facials is the only thing that works for me but MURAD has a great cleanser that works for adult acne and backne. That said…she’s adorable I’ve always liked her since Mermaides and Adams Family.

  15. Obvious says:

    Neutrogena makes an acne spray I really like, it sprays upside down and it clears of alot of my acne in just a few days.

    Total clear or something i think it’s called.

  16. Gwen says:

    I really like her. I hope the show works out well for her :)

  17. Mitch Buchanan Rocks says:

    Vale try witch hazel (apply with a make up pad or cotton ball) it works wonders.

  18. ninjajeje says:

    I’ve had back & chest breakouts since I was 11 I’m 26 now – cutting dairy out of my diet completely helped. The natural hormones in cows milk ( not the stuff we add ) that makes baby cows big – actually causes our bodies to create more androgens – ergo, breakouts :( its hard to stay away from cheese & yogurt but it has helped my skin.

  19. Pyewacket says:

    LOVE HER! She is a little beauty too! So unique! Can’t wait for the show!

  20. lucy2 says:

    I like her, but I hope she doesn’t obsess too much over what she looks like in a bikini.
    Not sure about the show – it sounds kind of interesting, but the previews I saw were not great and it just feels like their trying to grab on Mad Men’s 1960s thing.

  21. Denise says:

    She looks lovely; I always watch whatever she is in because it is bound to be interesting.

  22. RobN says:

    She sounds pretty cool, but I don’t think they really did her a favor with the cover photo.

  23. Ally says:

    Also using exfoliant really helps, as it keeps the pores clear. St.Ives Apricot scrub is nice.

    I’m bummed that Ricci and Adam Goldberg broke up. They made a great couple.

  24. Cletus says:

    The Atkins Diet WILL give you pimples in places you never thought possible. I know, I did Atkins for about a month and I got zits EVERYDAMNWHERE. I was all, screw this, I’d rather be chubby.

  25. fancyamazon says:

    @layla amen. I don’t think acne justifies using medications that have such attrocious side effects, except I guess in extremely severe cases (there are people who have extreme pitting and get infections because their acne is that severe). Most of the time, yes, it sucks, but there are things that are much gentler that will help, if not completely eliminate, the problem. I’m 39 and was shocked when I started getting acne again, but I find that using a soap that has calamine in it helps tremendously, as do gentle toners that have rose water and such as their base.

  26. hatsumomo says:

    If I was her I wouldnt diet for the bikini shots. Women back in the day were a lot curvier and bikini bottoms went up to the navel.I would totally embrace it.

  27. Kermit says:

    @Vale & all others – one of the things that I’ve discovered that causes the backne is not rinsing off conditioner well in the shower. Lots of us do that step last in the shower, and then don’t really bother to rinse it off our backs. Also, witch hazel (like $1/bottle at the drug store) or another toner will help clean your back also.

  28. LeeLoo says:

    I do feel like this is a Mad Men copycat situation. The show itself really does not look very good. I’m bettting it will get canceled by Christmas.

  29. Jo 'Mama' Besser says:

    Nylon covers are always the worst.

  30. girlwithapearl says:

    God, I LOVE her so much.
    Best NYLON cover in a while, and I’m trying not to be biased here. They’ve been very mainstream lately, and I’m interested to read about Christina Ricci, because she’s not constantly in your face on every magazine cover/gossip blog

  31. Cheyenne says:

    Accutane is the only medicine that’s proven to work on severe cystic acne, but it can have some horrible side effects, not the least of which is the possibility of having a deformed child if you’re pregnant when you start taking it. Every doctor I know of requires a negative pregnancy test before they will prescribe it.

  32. normades says:

    Ditto what @ serena said. Her eating disorder was pretty hardcore and I don’t think she’s completely over it.

  33. Amy says:

    She looks better than ever in this photo spread. Gorgeous.

  34. smh says:

    Christina Ricci saying “because i’m the oldest member of the cast….” just made me feel immensely old.

  35. Camille says:

    She’s gorgeous and I love her, but the girl doesn’t need to lose weight, she is tiny.

  36. Amy says:

    You can get acne breakouts at any age. I’ve experienced periodic break outs since my last year of high school–up til then I had perfectly, clear skin! I had a horrible breakout last fall (probably due to stress but again who knows) and only now a full year later has my skin been clearing up (dermatologist gave me benzoyl peroxide–it’s drying but I don’t use it every day and it’s amazing! along with Duac and minocycline) I also get backne but it’s not too bad. Acne is just so frustrating because pretty much anything can trigger it-for me it seems to be stress and sunscreen (I have yet to find a good non oily non pore blocking sunscreen)

  37. Green_Eyes says:

    Love her honesty! Love her, and LOVE that fuzzy sweater in the last photo! (her too) but love that look..makes me wish it came in my size totally rock the hat & sweater w/ some amazing boots!

  38. corey says:

    “I used to hate feeling insecure. It’s the worst feeling in the world. So, I do a lot of things in advance so that I know I won’t have to feel like crap about myself.”
    Ugh I hate to admit it, but I can totally relate to this.

  39. Emily says:

    I’ve had acne since I was 8, and I’ve found that exfoliating regularly really helps. I also use cleansers and moisturisers made for “normal” skin, as opposed to “oily” as they can be too drying, which just makes my skin produce even more oil.

  40. JT says:

    “I’m not going to punish myself because I don’t look like the average person in a bikini.” That’s a very disconcerting statement. She clearly still has serious body image problems if she thinks she looks anywhere near “average.” The average American person is overweight, there is no way she is overweight. It’s really sad to know she feels this way.

  41. B says:

    So now we have not one, but two shows trying to capitalize off the success of Mad Men (this, and the Playboy Club)? Ugh. I remember reading an interview that Mike Wolfe of American Pickers did early on. He talked about how Pickers success was spawning a slew of similar shows. It greatly irritates me when a novel and fresh approach is subsequently trended to death.

    Having said that, I haven’t tired of starlets doing the 60′s-style photoshoots just yet and I think Christina is especially rocking it in the last shot.

  42. Sillyone says:

    She still looks like a bobble head to me.

  43. bugsy says:

    she is such a cutie. i’ve been rooting for her since the beginning of her career.

  44. NicoleAM says:

    Use a cottonball with rubbing alcohol for below the neck breakouts!

  45. Anon says:

    Both my mom and aunt (her sister)were both pilots and flight attendants back in the 60′s and 70′s (and still flying today) and it was not glamorous, they were treated like shit, very low pay, were harassed by the men pilots…it was not this glamorous party where women were equal to men… it was the EXACT opposite actually.

  46. theaPie says:

    Oh no. She is looking like a bobble-head all ready, and she is dieting??

    This is not good news for an anorexic. Once an anorexic always an anorexic and it sounds to me like she is having a set back. :(

  47. WillyNilly says:

    “They don’t make as many movies as they used to”

    I’m confused by this quote. Its actually the opposite this day in age…everybody is making a f*cking movie about everything…and they’re all pretty much sh*t.

    Is she referring to her age group, perhaps? I can see how the early thirties are getting pushed out.

  48. LBeees says:

    I had this whole thing typed out but… never mind.

    I’m pro-medication when it comes to acne.

  49. Anne de Vries says:

    I’m not going to punish myself because I don’t look like the average person in a bikini.”

    Wow but she has a f’ed up body image. What does she think the ‘average person’ looks like in a bikini?

  50. kimmy says:

    I will always have a soft spot for her. Mermaids, Casper, Now & Then. I was hoping that they would have turned her guest spot on Grey’s Anatomy into a recurring role b/c I thought she would be perfect on tv. I hope this show doesn’t suck! I think alot of her body image issues were the result of child/teen star growing up in the spot light. It can’t be easy to just push those issues aside. I appreciate how honest she’s always been about her struggles.

  51. julimonster says:

    I didn’t see the middle dress ANYWHERE on the Macy’s site >=(

  52. The Bobster says:

    I’m all for it as long as she covers that hideous nipple tattoo.

    “but they were in something like the top 10 highest paid jobs with the men”

    Stewardesses used to be highly paid?

  53. Wormer says:

    Man I love that forehead of hers. It’s so iconic.

    I know I’m crazy but I don’t come here to get judged… Oh wait…

  54. inthekitchen says:

    Chiming in on the what to do for adult breakouts: I HIGHLY recommend Dr Bronners tea tree (bar) soap. It’s cheap, all natural and works really well to keep your skin clear. Tea tree oil has natural antibacterial properties and doesn’t dry out your skin. Plus it smells great!

  55. Meghan says:

    Hmm. While she wasn’t with Pan Am, my great-grandmother was a stewardess and it was a BIG f’in deal that she was divorced and had a CHILD to boot, and was a stewardess. Very few people knew the truth, because she was expected to be a beautiful, single lady. She had some awesome stories to tell, though.

    It’s horrible of me that I can’t remember if it was Japan or China, I’m leaning toward Japan, though. She and my great-grandfather (2nd husband and a pilot) went on a routine overseas flight. While they were there they came across a family who had an incredibly sick child, but couldn’t afford to get her any help and were pretty much shunned by the community for some reason, so they went and got help for this child. The family was super thankful and they left with a warm, fuzzy feeling in their tummies. Well, that was the last flight to that country for a while, but it just so happened that she was on the first return flight a few years later. She randomly ran into that family and over the years they had been doing a lot better and had never forgotten how my great-grandparents had helped them out, and to thank her they gave her this gigantic pearl.

    The best story happened to a friend of hers, but they were on the same flight. Some hot-shot 40′s/50′s movie star was on the flight and back then they carried the refreshment selections on these incredibly heavy metal trays. The lady who was assigned to this dude had fairly weak wrists and she came up to dude and his agent/manager-whatever with the tray and asked if he’d like anything. Dude refused to speak to her for a LONG time, she almost dropped the tray, I think someone else had to come and hold the tray for her for a minute or two and he finally decided on some really complicated tea/coffee order that she had to go back and prepare. Being the kind lady that she was, she prepared his drink and served it to him, all happy and sweet. Her last memory of him was watching him run down the aisle, clutching his butt, because she had put a laxative in his drink.

  56. Abby says:

    Cheyenne, I work in a derm office, so I’m very familiar with accutane. Accutane is now regulated by the government, and a negative pregnancy test is required each month a female takes accutane, and the female MUST be on 2 types of birth control (like the pill and use a condom, or using the pill and spouse/partner be fixed). Anyway, in my office, we use accutane as a last resort, trying minocycline or doxycycline first, along with different topical medications before accutane.

  57. Ames says:

    It took 42 comments before someone posted about her “looking average” in a bikini?!?!? That’s the first thing that jumped out at me in the article.