Life Lessons from Lindsay Lohan

By Interview

Photographed by Albert Watson

Lindsay Lohan

Welcome to Life Lessons. This week, we celebrate Lindsay Lohan by flipping through the pages of her June 2004 Interview cover story, which took place just a few months after the release of her blockbuster film Mean Girls. In it, the actress weighs in about teen movies, navigating high school cliques, and her party-girl image.  So sit back and grab a pen—you just might learn a thing or two.

“Initially, I wanted to play the part of Regina [the main ‘mean girl,’ played by Rachel McAdams]. But then I thought about it, and I was like, ‘I don’t want my fan base to think I’m a mean girl.’”

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“I don’t feel like I have any power. I’ve been working hard and trying to get to this position, and I feel like people are starting to recognize the stuff that I’m doing, and enjoying it. It makes me feel really good when my little sister and her friends peek inside my bedroom door and stare at me. [Laughs] It’s cool to have people look up to you.”

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“I was more of a floater in high school. I made it a point to get along with everyone because if you’re an actress, people assume that you think you’re better than everyone else. I wanted to make sure that people had no reason to think that about me.”

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“In general, girls in school feel pressured to dress a certain way and look a certain way—to be thin and popular and wear Juicy Couture sweatsuits and that kind of thing. And if you’re not, then you’re not going to be cool.”

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“I don’t like the fact that people my age are dealing with today’s images, because they’re not realistic, and people think that’s how they should be presenting themselves. It’s scary because these little kids are looking at you like you’re perfect, and nobody’s perfect. If you’re willing to grow up in public, then you have to be yourself.”

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“I don’t want this to sound obnoxious or anything, but I feel like I’m one of the best friends anyone could have. I’m really loyal because that’s all I look for in a friend. All I want is somebody I can trust and who will be there for me.”

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“I think everyone in general is overexposed. Personally, I think it would be nice if the studios went back to how they used to be when they protected their actresses—and girls actually wore more clothing. That may sound hypocritical because I like to wear sexy things sometimes, but that’s just because the only things that people consider sexy right now is what’s out there. If sexy was brought back in the way that Marilyn Monroe or Brigitte Bardot used to do it, then it might be different.”

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“I don’t know what the Hollywood rules are exactly, but I know I don’t like them.”

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“Just because I’m 17 and I’m having fun, they start saying I’m trying to be older, partying and going crazy. I don’t even like to drink!”

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“I don’t mind paparazzi—they’re just doing their job. For me to go, ‘Oh, my god, they’re so annoying,’ would be obnoxious and unfair. I mean, I kind of asked for all that when I got into this business. It’s just upsetting when people start making things up.”

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“For a while, I didn’t get anything, and I remember saying to [my mom] once that if I didn’t get the commercial I was trying for, I’d never act again. I ended up getting it, though. It was my first, for Duncan Hines. Since then I’ve kept acting. I got a part on Another World, and then I left that to do The Parent Trap [1998] And now here I am—the party girl of Hollywood.”

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“I want to act more. I want to really act in a film and commit to something and be a different person. I mean, the characters I’ve played so far are very similar to who I am, so it’s hard to say that I’m actually fully acting. I want to find something that’s a little bit more dramatic, something that’s different from what I usually do. I don’t want to give an image of doing only teen movies and just being this perfect teen.”

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“One of the things I’ve been trying to do lately is write things down that I think about, because I have a lot of really good ideas for shows and scripts and that kind of stuff. I want to co-write and produce something that I’m not even in—I think that would be so cool.”


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