Elizabeth Olsen won’t buy a house in LA because the paparazzi are ‘crippling’


Elizabeth Olsen covers the latest issue of Elle Canada. I’m not loving the editorial, but that’s mostly because I don’t think Olsen was well-served by the magazine’s stylists. In my opinion, she looks better in very clean styles and more natural, barely-there makeup. Elle Canada overloaded her with boho clothes and pink lipstick. As for the interview, she comes across a bit better in this piece than she did in her recent Times Style magazine piece. But there’s still something that bugs me: it’s a feeling of “are you really as famous as you think you are?” The way she complains about the paparazzi and the lengths she goes to in maintaining her “privacy,” you’d think she was Angelina Jolie or, hell, Blake Lively. It just doesn’t seem to match up to Olsen’s actual level of fame. Although, to be fair to her, she’s been dealing with crazy Tom Hiddleston-fans for more than a year, so maybe she does need to be careful. You can read the full interview here. Some highlights:

She wants to be low-key: “A lot of the time in my life, I try not to take up space—I just want to disappear into a wall. And then eventually, when I’m around people I feel confident with, I’ll take up more space.”

Moving between Marvel films & indies: “The only thing I care about is if the team is great, the script is good and the character is someone I can connect to in my gut. After that, it’s just a fun f–king job. I don’t have any regrets—I was just so happy to be working—but I was forcing myself not to give power to ‘the system.’ But the system does have power, and I’ve learned how to use it. It’s smarter than to ignore it.”

She doesn’t want a social media presence: “I just have an old-school mindset. Also, girls I look up to, like Jennifer Lawrence, Rooney Mara and Alicia Vikander, don’t have it, and it hasn’t affected their careers remotely. I’d rather live as private a life as I can. I’m not trying to be a mysterious person, but I’d rather be seen as an actor from job to job. I’ve never lived my life trying to be an influencer; I’m happy keeping my own opinions for fun dinner conversation.”

She won’t discuss her love life: Olsen says it’s just something that is “in her bones” and influenced heavily by her notoriously private older sisters. “From an outside point of view, people have an interest in people they’ve seen grow up. But no one in my family has ever cared to feed into that or make it more interesting than it is because, really, it’s not.”

She doesn’t like fan mail either: “When I’m filming on location, our production office is listed and people send stuff. It makes me uncomfortable. I don’t want people to know what I’m up to or where I am.”

She rents a house in LA & she has a roommate: “The moment I own a house, it becomes public knowledge,” she says, going on to describe the “crippling” nature of paparazzi in L.A., where, after being spotted, she won’t go home for several hours in case they follow her. “It’s pretty violating. At night when you can’t see anything because the flashes blind you, that’s really disconcerting.”

[From Elle Canada]

I understand just wanting to be a jobbing actress. I understand wanting to withhold part of yourself from the media. I even understand what she says about learning how to play the game and work “the system” to her advantage. But I feel like I’m hallucinating a little bit when she goes on and on about how she can’t own a house because then they know where you live and she’ll get pap’d every day. Maybe she’s really, really good at hiding out already, but there are RARELY candid photos of Olsen in LA or anywhere else. She gets photographed at premieres, media events and fashion events. She got pap’d in London when she went on a date with Tom Hiddleston last year. And beyond that… nothing. So is she really good at hiding out, or is she just not as famous as she thinks she is?


Photos courtesy of Elle Canada.

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85 Responses to “Elizabeth Olsen won’t buy a house in LA because the paparazzi are ‘crippling’”

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  1. Alix says:

    Wonder if her sisters ever throw cash her way…

  2. Felice. says:

    And the London paps were so called ahead of time.

  3. Tiffany says:

    She is mot as famous as she thinks she is and these quotes shows to me that she wants to be.

    *Hands EO a glass of water*

  4. K says:

    Yeah I don’t think she is that famous, talented yes but I still think more people know her as the younger sister of the Olsen twins.

    Now her sisters are that famous so maybe she just means from growing up?

  5. Jh says:

    Ugh. Am I the only one who is soooo tired of this girl? I don’t understand her appeal at all.

    • Diana says:

      She’s a good actress but sis needs to take a seat or two.

    • twilly says:

      Me too. Big ego much??? Lizzy, time to put a sock in it.

    • meme says:

      Me neither. She thinks she way more famous than she is and what an ego. I wouldn’t recognize her if she past me on the street.

      • Miss V says:

        Same. She has no charisma or screen presence. She is an Olsen… That’s the only thing recognizable about her.

      • V4Real says:

        A lot of people didn’t know who she was before Marvel came knocking.

        I saw Civil War last night and somehow she managed to annoy me this time around. I liked her in AOU.

    • TreadStyle says:

      @JH +1 … I feel like she’s been trying to “happen” and matter for a couple of years now and no one is biting.

  6. roxane says:

    This interview seems like a long list of complains, she might be a nice lady and maybe she comes across better on tv, but this isn’t what i called a good interview.

  7. INeedANap says:

    I wonder if she saw her sisters’ experiences growing up and it’s warped her notion of fame. Like, she doesn’t really know low-level fame because her sisters were so big, so she assumes that’s what all actors go through.

    • littlemissnaughty says:

      That’s what I was thinking. I don’t think she’s that famous but she might just be deathly afraid of it because it really did a number on her sisters. So any time she even smells a paparazzo anywhere, she panics. That’s what is sounds like. But if she really is so terrified, she honestly should’ve chosen a different profession or at LEAST not signed with Marvel for god’s sake. I mean there’s fame and then there’s the franchise press tours.

      • ladysussex says:

        Exactly. If she’s so terrified of fame, maybe “Hollywood Actress” wasn’t a good choice for her. Her family became very rich off her older sisters. She could have easily gone to university and chosen a different career.

      • Exactly, why go into the entertainment business if you don’t enjoy connecting with people outside of your realm? Sure, privacy is important, but there are a LOT of ways to make a living as an actress as an established one already…she could easily toil away in voiceover work or animation, and that would put the whole “fame problem” to bed. So I’m calling shenanigans on this one. Want to live a lower key life but love acting….it’s called THEATER sweetheart. Ask Tom about it, he’ll fill you in on the details.

    • lucy2 says:

      That’s a good point, she saw it all very early.

      It does come off like she thinks she’s more famous than she is, but we also don’t know what she’s experienced herself. There may not be a ton of photos of her out there all the time, but that doesn’t mean she hasn’t dealt with paparazzi intruding on her life. And I get what she’s saying about how a real estate purchase makes her address public knowledge.

    • Alex says:

      This is a good point

    • Kitten says:

      Yes that was my first thought as well. Everything she says makes perfect sense if you put it within that context.

    • Dani2 says:

      ITA 100%. I can see how seeing it like that would forever colour your view of fame as a whole even though acting is your livelihood.

    • Jenna says:

      That’s a really interesting comment. And far more believable than “ugh, who does she think she is??!!” The Olsens were being regularly ripped to shreds by the media when Elizabeth must have been about 12/13, and in Mary-Kate’s case severely impacted her mental health at the time. I imagine it must have had some lingering effect on the entire family.

      • However, I maintain that if that is really the case, and it has affected your health and family, you do what everyone else does when you encounter a stimuli that is making you physically or mentally ill – you remove the stimulus. If she were a smoker who was coughing intractably, she’s be well advised to quit. People who find themselves anxious and have trouble coping in the limelight are not meant to be IN the limelight for extended periods. If it bothers you so much, find another way to express yourself. It’s not like she’s without resources.

      • Cranberry says:


        It’s not that I don’t have compassion for her regarding feeling violated and probably for most her life indirectly through her sisters. But it’s obvious that her or her management want to capitalize on she being a pretty Olsen. So although I can understand her point of view, she’s got to grow some balls and get over it if she wants to play at this level. If she’s going to go after big commercial movies and pose for fashion magazine covers, then she can’t keep whining and acting so squeamish about the business she’s chosen.

  8. Greenieweenie says:

    If it bothers her THAT much, she picked the wrong profession. And it’s not like she went into it naively. So idk who she can blame but herself.

    • Maria says:

      i agree. fame will always be poison in your life and in the life of the people you love. at some point in your life you’ll have to choose what means more to you: your privacy and not hurting the people close to you or being a famous actor.
      she obviously enjoys the perks of fame so its hard to feel bad for her when she complains about the bad sides.

    • swak says:

      Thank you. My thoughts exactly. Also, if you don’t want your love life known, don’t date someone who is constantly in the lime light, like Hiddleston is.

    • SloaneY says:


  9. PunkyMomma says:

    Don’t worry honey, the LA paps aren’t interested.

  10. vauvert says:

    If that was meant to stimulate interest, whether from us or paps, it was a major fail. She is – despite the maybe hookup with TH – as bland as ever. And honey, you didn’t connect with your role in Marvel at all – I thought you were the worst part about that movie and your accent ruined it for me.

  11. Adrien says:

    Do paps even bother to take pics of her? Is she even tabloid worthy? If she wants, she can buy a house in Anaheim. Huge Asian population in that part of OC. People and paps are only interested in celebs in the music industry.

    • Becky says:

      No, not really. I always thought the pics of her looking at vegetables in a Farmers Market were staged. They always appear on the same gossip site.

  12. Talie says:

    She probably inherited some tinfoil paranoia from her sisters.

    • Anon says:

      But there is one fact: her sisters grew up in the spotlight. They were very very famous. They are well known designers. Lizzie is just the sister. That’s it. I can understand a complaint coming from her sisters. Not from her.

      • Chewbacca says:

        She watched what all that fame did to her sisters and she has said that she strongly considered walking away after seeing the way the press dealt with her sister’s anorexia. They were obviously really miserable, or they’d be trying to have a bigger presence in Hollywood.

    • “tinfoil paranoia” THIS. Thanks….I’ll be adding that to my lexicon.

  13. Calcifer says:

    Also, not really on topic, but I really dislike the trend of wearing a ring on each and every one of your fingers… especially if on top of that they all have intricate designs. Show some discrimination, choose one or two rings you find really beautiful and be done with it. Less is more.

  14. AlmaMartyr says:

    She looks really like Cillian Murphy to me in the main pic.

  15. Tallia says:

    Elizabeth who? Isn’t that Maddie Ziegler?

    • Redgrl says:

      A little full of herself. And not to be mean – but there’s something not right with her nose… Or is it just the photo?

  16. CidySmiley says:

    She is so… whiney. There’s a difference between a complaint here and there and just straight up whining.

  17. OhDear says:

    This reads like a typical “I’m private and don’t like being a celebrity” interview, so … eh. Not feeling the photoshoot, though. The photos make her look …off.

  18. Anon says:

    Oh Jesus, the only famous part of her is her family name. I can totally understand her sisters saying this but she acts as if people really care… Are American people really interested in this woman? Honest question. I am curious because no one cares in Europe. As for buying a house: girl, you are not Angelina. No one will camp infront of her house. Btw, she acted differently when she was engaged. If you want to protect your private life for real, you do not talk about weddings, kids, your fiance or whatever. Seems she got lessons from Hiddles…. Sorry had to mention this. And now I will hide.

    • twilly says:

      Don’t hide. No one is interested in her, England, LA. She’s only famous in her own mind. Spoiled brat – grow up already – you’re 27!

    • Starkiller says:

      This is an interview for Elle Canada. What does America have to do with it? But since you asked, no, no one cares about her here, either.

  19. Saks says:

    If the paps really wanted picture of her, there would be picture of her. Truth is she is simply not that famous

  20. Kerfuffles says:

    What a whiney interview. She’s not as famous as she thinks she is, by far. And if she was so obsessed with privacy, why become and actress? She could’ve become a schoolteacher in Peoria if her privacy was so important to her. The irony of complaining about a lack of privacy–in a magazine! That she’s voluntarily on the cover of! Oof. I just loathe that kind of clueless celebrity whining.

    As for the house thing–she needs a lawyer. I dare say most celebrities don’t actually own their homes in their own names. Create a LLC or LLP own the house. Voilá, you can own a house but your name isn’t in the public record as the owner.

    People far, far more famous than her have managed to own houses for decades and survive the burden of doing so. And I don’t think the paps are going to be sending up the helicopters to get aerial shots of “Elizabeth Olsen’s house!”

  21. Kitten says:

    It’s absolutely insane to me how as a society we tolerate the paparazzi. Every time an actor dares to complain about their privacy being invaded we tell them to STFU instead of taking the opportunity to examine ourselves as a society and to look at how creepy these people are, how far they will go to get a photo.

    I get that Olsen isn’t that famous but if she feels like she’s a prisoner in her own home because of scumbag photogs camping out in her driveway or whatever, then that’s her experience. I doubt she would be lying about that. Anyway, I cannot stand the paparazzi and I will always side with celebs. I don’t need to see a pic of so-and-so pumping gas or getting coffee. Let these people live their lives in peace.

    And I get the irony of posting this on a celeb gossip site but I’m not here for the pics outside of red carpet stuff–I’m here for the discussions and no, I don’t buy/read/support gossip rags because of this very reason. These people are straight-up leeches and as a relatively private person, I can’t imagine dealing with sh*t like that.

    • Wren33 says:

      Me too! I know some celebs court the paps, but it really squicks me out that people feel that famous or rich people can literally complain about nothing without being ripped apart. Some people are fame whores, but some people just want to be at the top of their industry without having to give up ever going out in public.

      • Kitten says:

        Thank you! I was expecting people to sh*t on me lol. Plenty of time left for that I guess 😉

        But yeah, I would occasionally call the paps too if I was a celeb because they’re going to show up anyway. It’s inevitable because as a society, we’ve created a climate that makes it ok for them to do that sh*t. Other countries have laws that prevent paps from hounding celebs, we do not. If I was a celeb, I’d rather be able to chose the location and time and control the situation on MY terms–let them get their damn pics so I can go on with the rest of my day like a normal human. That’s preferable to having a group of paps hiding in bushes or ambushing me in an airport or filming myself and my kids waiting in line for ice cream.

        I mean, these are predatory people who will go to any lengths, at least the actor should be able to get SOMETHING out of it, whether it’s free promotion for a movie or whatever. I’d be damn sure that they’re not going to make money off of my photo without me getting something in return.

        AND ITA about the famehos but they’re usually not the ones who are complaining about getting papped.

    • Dara says:

      Kitten, I agree with you about 90%. The trouble is, the celebrity/paparazzi relationship is a mutually beneficial one – some celebs use the photogs to their advantage, calling them ahead of time to take those “candid” photos of them doing normal everyday things. The celeb gets their photo in a magazine and the photog makes a few bucks.

      I’m not saying LIzzie is one of those celebs, and I think the whole things sucks for those celebrities that don’t play that game, but not every celebrity that complains about having their privacy invaded is an innocent victim.

      • Kitten says:

        As I said in my second comment–I would do the exact same thing if I was a celeb. F*ck if I will let some leech make money off of my image when I am getting ZERO in return except for harassment. If I can get something out of it, damn straight I will and I think that’s exactly the mentality of a lot of celebs: “It’s gonna happen regardless so might as well get some PR out of it.” It’s not like they have laws that will protect them, you know? If it’s a public place, they don’t have much recourse in terms of calling the police.

        We have this thing with celebrities where we expect them to not have human feelings or emotions because they make a sh*t ton of money. It’s easy to dismiss complaints with a wave of the hand and “oh please, your life is a cakewalk” but if we took the time to be honest with ourselves, I think most of us would agree that we would go crazy being hounded by paps everywhere we go. The right to privacy and anonymity suddenly becomes a valuable commodity when you no longer have it.

      • kai says:

        Do we believe that she never calls the paps? Genuine question. I don’t follow her that closely.

        Famous people just shouldn’t talk about their fame, full stop. Nine out of ten sound like a–holes.

      • Dara says:

        Kitten, it’s obvious you feel strongly about this but there is no need to swear at me when I essentially agree with you. I’m all in favor of the celebs trying to control how their image is used – up to and including calling the paps – but I don’t like hypocrisy. I don’t think their life is a cakewalk, but I also don’t think they can have their cake and eat it too. I lose respect for any celebrity that engages with photogs voluntarily but then moans about how annoying it is. Play the game or don’t, but if you do, don’t then play the victim card in interviews to drum up sympathy.

        That being said, I do have extreme contempt for the breed of photog known as the “stalkerazzi” – the ones that not only hide in the bushes, but chase people down streets and hurl insults at them to get a reaction that will sell more photos. Those people are scum.

      • SloaneY says:

        How is it that so many famous people are almost never papped? Are they wearing invisibility cloaks? Have they been sprinkled with anti-pap dust? Or do they just not go to trendy places where they know everyone is papped? While there are some uber famous people that are stalked, there are many who are not. So many people know how to disappear unles they have a movie/album coming out. It obviously isn’t that impossible. I feel way more sorry for people who get pap stalked who aren’t looking for fame (court cases or the like) then I do people who went into this business with the intention of getting fame but then complaining when they get it.
        Fame isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, but it’s fairly easy to walk away from it most of the time. If she’s so frightened, why did she go into the business, knowing what she knows from her sisters? If she still wanted to act she could go the theater route and not be nearly as hounded.

      • NUTBALLS says:

        Celebrities get papped more if the photos are worth more on the market. You don’t see a lot of the older, more established actors (Tom Hanks, Kevin Spacey etc) because they don’t generate the revenue that Affleck – Garner, Brangelina or Kardashians do. The ones you see regularly in the celebrity mags and tabs are the ones most in demand.

        Also, even those that live in pap central (LA,NY) know where to go to avoid them. One of the reasons Tom and Lizzy were called out last year was they went to a known pap hangout. You rarely see Tom papped when he’s hanging out at home, so it came off as a deliberate PR move to generate buzz ahead of ISTL’s premier at TIFF a few weeks later. So Lizzy sounds silly to say she deals with it when she hardly does and has deliberately put herself in pap’s way when it suited her PR agenda.

        Paps have said that it’s not the A-listers that tip them off to arrange a “candid” shot — they’re already being stalked due to their high $$ value. It’s those celebs lower on the rung that are wannabe A-listers that do. While I agree that it would be awful to deal with that every day, it is used as a means of profile-raising by some and therefore mutually beneficial.

    • melior says:

      I second that. People need to take a hard look at themselves and stop the fan-mania.

    • I Choose Me says:

      Couldn’t agree with you more. Some of the people advocating for her to stfu should check out some tmz videos sometimes and see how absolutely bonkers it can get with grown men following you, shouting rude stuff to get a reaction, chasing you down, invading your space etcetera. I would have constant panic attacks and probably never want to leave the house.

      And am I mistaken in thinking that the fact that she rarely gets papped outside of promotional events more or less proves that she’s not ‘thirsty for fame?’

    • Jenna says:

      OMG yes! I tend to always agree with what you post here, Kitten.

      We’ve been so conditioned to pap pics that we don’t see that there’s something so wrong and so down right weird about feeling the need to see celebrities walking down the street or pumping gas or whatever. It’s bizarre to me, that entitlement. And as soon as a working actor who doesn’t ever court infamy as opposed to acting success complains about it, people go crazy. Madness.

    • jammypants says:

      I completely agree with you. There’s a time and place to be a public persona and a time and place to be a private person. Our society see this as a blurred line.

  22. Lucy says:

    ” she’s been dealing with crazy Tom Hiddleston-fans for more than a year, ”


  23. NUTBALLS says:

    Lizzy’s not that famous. Most of the press that she got last year was because of the rumors and the pap walks with Hiddleston. With his much larger fandom, she had a lot more to gain from the publicity than he did.

    She’s a minor player in a huge and overcrowded Marvel Universe. She only gets papped at the Farmers Market, at fashion shows and at parties. I’m actually surprised that Elle gave her a cover spread.

    • Cranberry says:

      IDK Nutballs. Hiddlestons fandom might be larger now, but she’s always had a lot of indirect fan/hater interest thrown off from the love/hate mania of her sisters.

      In essence, the Olsens are the first Kardashians. A lot of the hate towards them is because they became famous and super rich for doing nothing but being toddlers for a few hrs in front of a camera. Then later making badly written and badly acted videos for tweens – again something anyone could have done and probably better. Same goes for the designer business. No talent just name recognition.
      Even though Lizzy has applied herself better by going to drama school and actually has some talent, she was recognized and probably given a lot of jobs over other actresses because of her name. All this may not have been her own making, and her family has also suffered along the way, but it never stopped them from cashing in on every opportunity. Again, blond Kardashians.

  24. Magnoliarose says:

    She just doesn’t seem famous enough for it to be a problem. I never think to pop open a bottle of wine and have some snacks to watch an Elizabeth Olsen film with my friends. In fact I forget she’s even on the radar unless she’s covered here. Some stars have legit complaints but I’m not buying she’s one of them with Tom or without Tom.

    I thought the header pic was a weird photo of Maria Sharapova.

  25. Velvet Elvis says:

    I seriously have no idea who she even is. Olsen twins sister?

  26. Marianne says:

    There are so many celebs out there who rarely get papped, that I think it is fairly east to avoid them. There are certain areas that are always camped out with paps like that pumpkin patch or The Ivy, Nobu etc. Avoid areas like those, dont call the paps yourself…you should relatively be fine it seems. Sure, there still may be an occassion where you naturally come face to face with one just based on random chance.

    Plus I also feel like the paps are gonna go after the people who they know the public are interested in. Like, if you’re a super private person and never discuss your personal life in any shape or form. I doubt many people are going to be interested in seeing pics of you at the grocery. Whereas if you talk about your family/kids all the time, the general public is going to be more interested seeing you out with them. *shrugs shoulders*

    • mytake says:

      LOL! The Pumpkin Patch. This made me giggle. Because that whole pumpkin patch ritual is hysterical. I mean, every year we take some time out of our lives to flip through pics of B team celebrities frolicking in hay and picking pumpkins. The whole thing — it’s comedy gold!

  27. Miran says:

    Her overinflated sense of fame is because shes an olsen, im sure.

  28. Grant says:

    I really can’t shade Elizabeth. She’s great in Civil War, and I love that she’s bringing one of my favorite comic characters to life so adeptly on the big screen. So rock on, EO!

  29. Savvy says:

    No wonder Tom Hiddleston left her. She’s completely delusional. No one cares about her unless she’s romantically attached to someone more famous like Hiddleston or other Marvel co-stars.
    And the things she says about fan mail… This girl doesn’t respect her fans (does she really have any?).

    • Grant says:

      Is Hiddleston really that much more famous?

      • NUTBALLS says:

        He’s more famous than Lizzy on social media thanks to Loki’s popularity and being one of Tumblr’s boyfriends. But with the success of The Night Manager, he’s broadening his fan base to people like my mom who’s never watched a Marvel movie.

        Have you ever seen video of his surprise appearance at 2013 Comic Con? He brought down the house when Loki showed up.


  30. Kate says:

    Just because a few people are dealing with hundreds of paparazzi, that doesn’t mean that other people can’t feel freaked out or nervous about having 5 guys following them once a month. Plus, dealing with paps when you have loads of money to spend on compounds and security is rather different from dealing with them when you’re not making 10-20mil a movie.

    She’s being smart I think. If you become a pap target early in your career, that will follow you forever. If you stay away from LA and only get photographed occasionally, unless you start doing crazy things, it’ll stay that way throughout your career.

  31. Rae says:

    I don’t feel any sympathy.

    She can walk away. She chooses to be in an industry that has a well known symbiotic relationship with the press.

    And before people go on about judging ourselves as a society; they sell themselves as a brand. Actors don’t get paid millions, movie stars do. You are being paid for your brand, not your acting skills.

    If you’re not happy, leave the industry or go back to earning SAG basic rates as a minor actor.

    She sounds extremely paranoid, to the point I genuinely question whether this is the right career for her with that mental state.

  32. OriginallyBlue says:

    Did she really put Rooney Mara and Alicia Vikander in the same fame level as Jennifer Lawrence?

  33. KInChicago says:

    I think she grew up with her child star sisters and likely got really scary/dangerous pedophile mail, stalkers from that time.
    Something like that is going to be hard to shake.
    I’m sure her parents and sibling’s staff protected them from some of it but am also certain that kind of awful attention leaves scars.

    I think this is why we never see her or her sisters in bikinis on People because they want to avoid that vulnerability, fear and potential for negative attention.

  34. Savvy says:

    Ms Olsen’s publicists are working extra hours commenting on this post. They work almost as hard as the Twitter accounts paid to mention her.

  35. Amanda says:

    I don’t know about the paparazzi or whatever, but that’s some bad ombré on her head

  36. Drs. Fixxie says:

    I think she just meant to explain what her twin sissters go true.
    She indeed is not as famous as she thinks

  37. margaret says:

    She didn’t complaint when she made the ridiculously staged pap-walks with her ex Boyd Holbrook : there were a lot of them. She and Boyd were like Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt back then.