Chloë Grace Moretz spoke bluntly to Hunger magazine about becoming a “recluse” after her body dysmorphia was exacerbated by “horrific” memes on social media, most notably one meme comparing her body to a “Family Guy” character. The viral meme, which ridiculed the actor’s body, was created after a photographer snapped a picture of Moretz walking into a hotel carrying a pizza box.
“Then came the onslaught of horrific memes that started getting sent to me about my body,” Moretz said. “I’ve actually never really talked about this, but there was one meme that really affected me, of me walking into a hotel with a pizza box in my hand. And this photo got manipulated into a character from ‘Family Guy’ with the long legs and the short torso, and it was one of the most widespread memes at the time.”
“Everyone was making fun of my body, and I brought it up with someone and they were like, ‘Oh, shut the fuck up, it’s funny,’” Moretz continued. “And I just remember sitting there and thinking, my body is being used as a joke and it’s something that I can’t change about who I am, and it is being posted all over Instagram. It was something so benign as walking into a hotel with leftovers. And to this day, when I see that meme, it’s something very hard for me to overcome.”
Moretz explained that she was “kind of sad” after the meme went viral because “it took a layer of something that I used to enjoy, which was getting dressed up and going to a carpet and taking a photo, and made me super self-conscious. And I think that body dysmorphia — which we all deal with in this world – is extrapolated by the issues of social media. It’s a headfuck.”
Body dysmorphia is a mental health condition where a person is often riddled with anxiety due to perceived flaws in their physical appearance, which are usually unnoticeable to others.
“I basically became a recluse,” Moretz said of the effect of social media memes about her body. “It was great because I got away from the photographers and I was able to be myself, and to have so many experiences that people didn’t photograph, but at the same time it made me severely anxious when I was photographed. My heart rate would rise and I would hyperventilate.”
Moretz last starred in the Hulu original film “Mother/Android,” and she’ll next lend her voice to Netflix’s animated “Nimona” movie.