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Sydney Sweeney Designed Your Appearance.

Sydney Sweeney Designed Your Appearance.

Sydney Sweeney influenced my life. In 2019, I was Cosmo’s op-ed editor, which was a full-time job in and of itself. But I was also completing my first novel, They Wish They Were Us, which was a professional struggle in and of itself. Sydney was grabbing moments in Sharp Objects and The Handmaid’s Tale around the same time, and as she was ready to make her debut as the hungry-for-love, bad-decision-prone Cassie on Euphoria and the caustic, privileged Olivia on The White Lotus, she was dreaming even larger. She was planning the creation of her own production business, via which she’d option novels, adapt them for the film, and become a Reese Witherspoon–level Hollywood boss. She was, by the way, 22 years old.

Sydney ended up reading my book, a prep school murder mystery and travelling to New York to discuss purchasing the film rights. Now she’s in the process of adapting it into an HBO Max series called The Players Table, in which she and her real-life best friend Halsey appear (casual). So, as I already stated, life has changed.

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You were made to look by Sydney Sweeney. 29

Sydney’s life has been radically transformed along the road. She’s been optioning a slew of projects through her new company Fifty-Fifty Films, writing screenplays, and cementing her spot as a next-gen A-list actor in films like Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood, the erotic thriller The Voyeurs, the Netflix vampire flick Night Teeth, and, of course, the new season of Euphoria, where her already nuanced character goes to even more complex places.

She immerses herself in all of her projects by compiling what she refers to as “character bibles,” or backstories and inner lives that might take months to compile. (“There are characters I adore, and then there are characters I despise—those are the good ones,” she adds.) It’s a process that no one who knows her well would be surprised by. After all, this is the same lady who persuaded her family to relocate from Spokane to Los Angeles as a preteen with a PowerPoint presentation that contained a five-year plan for how she’d become an actor. “I prefer anything that seems like a challenge,” Sydney says as we meet up for our interview. The more intimidating, the better.

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Alexandre Vauthier gown Earrings by Ippolita.

Most performers appear to wait decades before becoming engaged with the business side of the industry. Did you have a strategy for getting started?

I’m completely obsessed with branding and marketing. I enjoy the concept of being able to say, “OK, I love this thing, now how can I make it available to a large market?” So I contacted my agents and said, “Do you think this is something I can accomplish?” They’ve always believed in everything I set my mind to, so they encouraged me and sent me things to read. Of course, I fell in love with yours, and the rest is history. But I don’t believe they expected me to become that engaged in it.

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You were made to look by Sydney Sweeney. 30

What has surprised you about being in charge of Fifty-Fifty Films?

One is the number of steps required to complete a task. There are so many obstacles, passages, and individuals. Two, even while individuals in the industry claim they support young female voices, I still have to battle for them, especially among older women. I was informed that I couldn’t earn the credit I thought I deserved and that I couldn’t use my company’s name on a project I was working on. I have my theories as to why this is so. Maybe they think we’re getting off too lightly. I was told I needed to complete a lot of things before I could earn a credit like that as if I didn’t deserve it. And it was the ladies that did it. That surprised me. Everyone puts on the act of helping one other. Everyone acts as though we’re all rooting for each other, but I haven’t felt that way yet.

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Alessandra The rich jumper. Briefings for commandos. Wolford slacks. Headband by Roger Vivier. It’s a retrouva necklace. Ring of Fernando Jorge

It’s as though they want you to jump through the same hoops they did. What else are you working on right now, other than the projects we currently know about?

A shitton, to be exact. I sold a film. I may or may not have written a screenplay based on a novel. I hold the right to around seven different books. It’s scary because you’re in an industry where everyone can see you fail. It’s a lot of stress. But everyone will have a mix of successes and failures; no one has a pristine slate of box-office blockbusters.

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Dress, necklace, and minaudière from Gucci. Heels by Roger Vivier Earrings by BVLGARI.

Do you have any roles that you look back on and shudder a little?

Everything that comes before Everything Sucks! and Sharp Objects. I pretend I was a completely different person at the time—I’ve blocked out so much of my high school life. Going to school in Los Angeles was very different from going to school in Spokane. People’s values were on a whole other plane. My grandparents handed me their old Volvo, which had squirrels living in it. I had to lay down cardboard on the floor because the oil was leaking everywhere. All the other students had Range Rovers and BMWs, and I was mortified by my vehicle. I feel guilty because I’m so blessed to have grandparents who could provide me with a car, but I used to leave the keys in the ignition, hoping someone would steal it so I could take out insurance on it. Nobody did.

You appear to have been living a double life while attempting to launch your acting career.

Yes. And I wasn’t the most self-assured person at the moment. I was aware that I was a talented actor, but no one believed in me. I was told I needed to lose weight or that I had the incorrect colour hair. Random occurrences that cause you to wonder, “Am I ever going to achieve my dream?”

And you had a lot going on at home, didn’t you?

Every day in Spokane, I participated in athletics. My relatives were often coming over to my house and showing me how to light flames with magnifying glasses. I miss my childhood terribly. I miss how lovely the world was, and I miss having my entire family together, my mother, father, and brother. Finances were a major source of concern after we relocated to Los Angeles so I could perform. My father lost his job, and our family fell bankrupt. “It wasn’t your fault,” they constantly say. That’s what it was. And when my parents divorced, my brother blamed me for it. But I believe they liked L.A. at first. It was an escape from the monotony of everyday life. That’s what I keep telling myself. There was obviously a separate, hard way that might be taken.

What exactly is it?

My family has a history of drunkenness and drug addiction. I’ve never used drugs, and I’m frightened of developing an addiction. Something in my family’s blood just impacts me in a different manner when they do things. Because I suffer from social anxiety, I only drink once a year. I enjoy small-group events. I’d like everyone to gather on the couch and play board games or watch television. I can’t stand around aimlessly drinking and getting nowhere in life. But I did act out with males around the time my parents separated. To fill this vacuum, I would go into the arms of men…. I was seeking love to fill the void left by the loss of a home.

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You were made to look by Sydney Sweeney. 31
Sydney Sweeney.
You were made to look by Sydney Sweeney. 32

This is the material that makes us who we are. What changes have you seen in your connection with your family?

My connection with my mother improved significantly, while my relationship with my father deteriorated, breaking my heart. My brother and I are doing much better now. Isn’t it true that I wish we could all be together? Of course, what youngster doesn’t? I attempted it once. When you’re a minor actor, a portion of your money goes into a bank account that you can’t access until you’re 18. I mistakenly assumed I’d have all this money, and I had this wonderful plan for it. When we moved from Spokane to Los Angeles, we had to sell the house I grew up in. It was my mother’s ideal home. So when I became 18, it hadn’t even been a year since my parents’ divorce, I decided I was going to purchase this house back and save everyone. I’ll re-assemble my family. It turned out that I didn’t have nearly enough money. I’ve never wept so much in my life.

It’s upsetting to realise there are certain things you can’t change. However, the rest of your life and profession have altered dramatically since that time. Euphoria was a watershed moment. When it comes to Cassie, you have a lot to work with—drugs, pregnancy, revenge porn….

I don’t agree with all of Cassie’s decisions, but I remember being a teen and letting my emotions rule my head, so I’m sure I’d make some of the same ones she did.

And how did it feel to watch how people reacted to your character Olivia in The White Lotus?

The White Lotus was an entirely different type of watershed moment. Because I pulled my top off in Euphoria, I don’t think as many people took me seriously. With The White Lotus, all these people came out of nowhere and said, “You’re the most fantastic…” and I’m like, but I went through the craziest emotional roller coaster in Euphoria. So, thank you?

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Top and knickers by Sandy Liang. Earrings and necklace by Marlo Laz.

Personally, how do you feel about doing naked scenes?

I’m completely cut off from the situation. When I’m tagged in Cassie or Pippa’s nudes from The Voyeurs, I feel like I’m looking at their nudes rather than Sydney’s. It’s extremely mechanical and not romantic to film one of these sequences. People are gazing at you, there are pads between you, nipple covers, and strange sticker thongs are all up in your buttocks. I questioned whether I’d done too much when I first watched The Voyeurs. In an attempt to make myself feel better, I looked up celebs who had done nude scenes. There are hour-long compilations of world-famous male performers in naked situations winning Oscars and receiving plaudits for their performance. When a woman does it, though, it lowers them. They aren’t actors. They just remove their shirts in order to audition for a part. There is such a double standard, and I sincerely hope that I can help to change it.

Do you find it unusual when your followers, especially those who follow you on social media, believe they have actual ties with you?

I sometimes feel bad about it. I’d want to provide a glimpse into my everyday life so that others can understand that it’s not all glitz and shine. But I can’t because, for one, I value my privacy and, for another, social media is a commercial platform. Sharing my personal life on it might jeopardise the business and brand I’m attempting to build.

So, how do you pick what to share and what not to share?

I try to stick to a formula. I’ll talk about my career and fashion because when else am I going to look so good? Again, every now and then, I try to include a Syd post.

Syd is your true self.

Syd is my true self.

Who will be able to see Syd?

Back home, I have a large family, my dog Tank, and a few close pals. I don’t have a large social circle. Quality is more important to me than quantity. Depending on how comfortable I am with the actors and crew at work, other versions of Syd will emerge. I’ll go home and think to myself, “I wish I didn’t speak so much.”

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Dress by Alexandre Vauthier. Dale Novick LTD is a company that makes rings.

You went on Instagram Live a few months back and wept as you talked about trolls and how their brutality affected you. It was a really personal event that went viral. It did, however, seem a little out of character.

That was the case. There’s more to the storey, though. I had a promo shot for a lingerie firm that morning. I started my period and refused to wear a tampon since I didn’t want to seem swollen in the images. I found out that if you take three or four birth control pills and mix them with Advil or Tylenol, you may stop your menstruation. [Editor’s note: We don’t advocate this because of the health risks…as you’ll see.] I did that, and an hour later I was dizzy and queasy when I arrived at the picture session. Fuck, maybe I need to eat something, I thought. I ate a muffin, and it did not make me happy. I suddenly puked all over the place in the middle of the shot. I was a shambles. I was completely humiliated. I was jacked on a variety of hormones. And I felt ashamed of myself since I’m normally so professional and on top of things. I needed to return home. One of my friends really wanted me to go out with her that night, so I contacted her and told her I couldn’t come. I suppose bailing on her was the final straw. She stated that she could no longer rely on me and that she no longer wanted to be my buddy. So that occurs, and I’m weeping and puking, and then two seconds later, I check Twitter and find that I’m trending. I’m reading all of these comments about how ridiculous my appearance is. I sobbed while on social media. “Oh, she’s just searching for attention,” someone said. This is the kind of thing that makes people murder themselves. And people don’t seem to care. I went on for about a minute and a half. It didn’t occur to me that anyone would videotape it. I simply wanted to get it out of my system. Then it travelled everywhere and evolved into its own creature.

Are you pleased you talked about it now that you think about it?

Yes, since it is a problem that individuals face on a regular basis. Is it true that I’m embarrassed? Yes, of course. I still don’t believe that everyone will see what I do.

Is this, combined with the fact that most people don’t get to see the real you, one of the reasons you want to keep your romantic interactions private?

I don’t date individuals who are famous. I don’t date actresses, artists, or anyone in the entertainment industry because it’s easier for me to just be plain Syd that way. I have a fantastic support system in place.

I have friends that will fight for me and enable me to shine without making me feel like, “Oh no, I’m shining too brightly, I need to take a step back.”

Is this something you’re looking for in a partner?

I’m on the lookout for the best buddy. I need to be able to be with someone with whom I can spend my entire life and never grow bored, and with whom I can laugh every day.

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You were made to look by Sydney Sweeney. 33

Do you want someone to just hang out with while you work on your car? Your TikToks about refurbishing a vintage Ford Bronco have gone viral. How did it all begin?

Anyone may purchase a brand-new automobile, but not everyone can own something unique and historically significant. My creative juices were pouring when I was in quarantine. I was bored and became addicted to browsing auto auction sites. I had a strong desire for a Bronco. But I wanted to create one so that when people remarked “nice vehicle” as I drove it, I could say “yes, thanks” and know I built it.

What does it feel like to be able to pursue these interests—and all the others that were out of reach before?

For the first time, I purchased a home. It has a lot of the same characteristics as the house my family lost in Spokane. There are hidden entrances and laundry chutes around the house. It truly seems like I’ve arrived at the point in my life when I can begin to offer my family the life I’ve always desired. I often feel bad talking about it since I recall not wanting to park in my school lot three or four years ago because I didn’t have a decent automobile. At the same time, I’m quite proud of myself. I get teary-eyed thinking about how hard I’m working to achieve my goals.

Cassie Anderson is the stylist. Florido Basallo’s hair was done by The Hair Shop. Melissa Hernandez of The Wall Group did the makeup. Zola Ganzorigt did her nails with Dior Vernis. Kate Longarzo is a fashion assistant. Cate Geiger Kalus provided the props. Abbey Adkison is the executive producer. Liesl Lar is the Senior Producer. Jennifer Cox is the cinematographer. Amanda Evans is the editor. Heather Weyrick is the postproduction supervisor. Crawford & Co-Productions is in charge of the production.

Gucci outfit, necklace, and minaudière on Sydney on the cover. The lead image is of Hervé Léger’s hot trousers. Necklace by Marlo Laz. Sydney is wearing a Michael Kors Collection shirt, briefs, and belt in bed. Necklace made by Foundrae. Season 1 Boxed Set of The Euphoria Books Sydney is wearing a Fendi dress, slacks, heels, earrings, a belt, and a purse. Chained Gucci sunglasses BVLGARI wristwatch. Sydney at the piano, wearing a Giambattista Valli gown. Earrings and ring by Cadar. Pink blouse and skirt: Prabal Gurung. Earrings by Kloto Ring by Marlo Laz.

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