Melissa McCarthy recalls a time when she wanted to conform to certain standards of beauty, but looking back, she thinks that girl was an "idiot."
"In my 20s I used to cry about why I wasn't thinner or prettier, but I want to add that I also used to cry about things like: 'I wish my hair would grow faster. I wish I had different shoes...,' " she said in an interview with People, which features her on its upcoming cover. "I was an idiot. ... It's a decade of tears."
Despite criticism about her size and her acting, the 43-year-old "Tammy" star said she never felt the need to change.
"I've always thought, 'If you want somebody different, pick somebody else.' But sure, criticism can sometimes still get to me. Some things are so malicious, they knock the wind out of you."
Case in point: A certain debacle with film critic Rex Reed, who gave her a weight-lashing last year in his review of the box-office-busting "Identity Thief," calling her "cacophonous," "tractor-sized" and a "hippo." She's also spoken out about being overlooked by designers declining to dress her for award shows.
Other headlines herald the mother of two as a plus-size role model, so it's not surprising that the conversation usually reverts back to her weight and size, with the narrative touting her success as well as her shape.
"It's like I'm managing to achieve all this success in spite of my affliction," she told the mag. "Would you ever put that in the headline for a male star?"
Whether she's relieving herself in a sink in "Bridesmaids," spinning in a harness on "Saturday Night Live" or whipping Sandra Bullock's strait-laced character into shape in "The Heat," the Emmy-winning "Mike & Molly" star will do "almost anything for a laugh," she said.
The actress plays a dimwitted fugitive in the upcoming comedy "Tammy," which husband Ben Falcone (a.k.a. the air marshal from "Bridesmaids") co-wrote with her and directed.
The film, which also stars Falcone, Susan Sarandon, Kathy Bates and Dan Aykroyd, hits theaters July 2. People's full McCarthy interview will hit newsstands Friday.
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