Cara Delevingne Says Modeling Is ‘The Opposite of Real’

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Photo: Courtesy of Vogue

The era of Cara Delevingne, Hollywood star, has officially begun. With seven films coming up (including next month’s Paper Towns and the DC Comics action-fest Suicide Squad), the model turned actress landed the cover of this month’s Vogue, not as part of a trio of Instagirls, but as an ascendant starlet. And based on this interview, she sounds like she’s very ready to leave modeling behind. “The thrill of acting is making a character real,” she says. “Modeling is the opposite of real. It’s being fake in front of the camera.” Not that it wasn’t challenging to make the transition. “I admit I was terrified to leave. I mean, the [fashion] bubble gives you a kind of dysfunctional family … The second you’re out of it, you’re like, What the hell just happened?”

In the issue, which hits newsstands June 23, Delevingne recalls her early days in the modeling industry — which included a go-see at Burberry where, as she remembers it, “the woman just said, ‘Turn around, go away.’” (She would later, of course, become the face of the brand.) And she endured what she calls “all the test shoots with the pervy men. Never trust a straight photographer at a test shoot.” She felt constantly controlled: “My agents told me what to do, and I did it. When I got in trouble, they told me off. It was a machine that I wasn’t controlling.” Her distress manifested itself in symptoms like fainting on shoots and psoriasis.

In her new actress persona, she may no longer be under those kinds of strictures, but it doesn’t mean that no one is telling her what to do. Speaking to the magazine while in training for her Suicide Squad role, she noted of her studio-mandated diet, “I’m not allowed to drink. I’m not allowed good food. After turning 20 and eating McDonald’s all the time and drinking too much, it started to show on my stomach and on my face. But I’m playing a homicidal witch, so I need to look ripped.”

Delevingne on Modeling: ‘The Opposite of Real’