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Emily Ratajkowski Knows Sexuality Is Empowering

Emily Ratajkowski talks about her work with Planned Parenthood and the way women's sexuality is treated in the media.

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Emily Ratajkowski's already made a name for herself as a model-turned actress. Now, she's adding "activist" to her title. Specifically, Ratajkowski is speaking out for women's sexuality — both on film and in real life. To share her message with as many people as possible, she's partnered with Planned Parenthood to talk about birth control and safe sex. We got a chance to speak with Ratajkowski about her collaboration with Planned Parenthood, the way female sexuality lives in the media, and her upcoming films. It’s very brave of you to talk about the positive impact that birth control has on your life and career; why do you think it’s important to speak out about this?
“Talking about birth control, but also the empowerment of women and sexuality, is unfortunately still a taboo issue, which is really a shame. And for me, I could have used more examples growing up, especially coming into my own sexuality, of women who are in the public eye that are comfortable and not afraid of being associated with that issue.” Why do you think more female celebrities don’t talk about the impact of birth control and speak positively of sexuality?
“I think it’s a really interesting indication, not only that this issue is still taboo and that people are afraid to be political, but that it is something women still feel ashamed of. You have women who are brave enough to carry a mattress through graduation with them because even though it means that might be the thing they’re defined by, they know how important the issue is. And, I feel the same way.” How has sexuality empowered you?
“I think celebrating and finding a joy in my sexuality has empowered me, personally and professionally. I’ve spent my life feeling unashamed of my womanhood and confident in myself, and that has made navigating life less complicated in a misogynistic society, in my industry, and in my relationships with men and my friendships with other women.” You’ve said in the past that you don’t want to rely on your figure or your modeling background for roles, and that you’re being selective with the roles you take; what appealed to you about your appearances in Gone Girl and the forthcoming We Are Your Friends?
“I think part of it is about working with great directors and finding interesting stories. But, as far as my role of Andie in Gone Girl, I think she was an interesting character because she was in a position that a lot of women can be — especially young women — where they’re the 'other woman' and the younger woman. It was important to me to add a dynamic element to that character so that it wasn’t just the obvious sort of woman that everyone feels is like the enemy. [In] We Are Your Friends, I really love the character because she’s not your Hollywood stereotype. She’s not the smart girl, the nerdy girl, or the popular girl, or the bitchy girl. She’s all of those things and none of them.” What can you tell us about We Are Your Friends?
“It’s a coming-of-age drama. I say it’s a little bit like Saturday Night Fever, but for our generation. So I think people will really enjoy it.” What kind of roles do you want to take on in the future?
“I think, again, finding those dynamic female roles that are so rare, especially for young females in Hollywood, is really my immediate goal.” Where do you see yourself in five years, both in your personal and professional life?
“I hope my personal life is much the same. I think eventually I’d like to have a family. Professionally, I hope I’ll be doing more things with Planned Parenthood and also making more movies, behind the camera and in front.”

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Emily Ratajkowski Interview - Planned ParenthoodReleased on June 17, 2015

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