Jameela Jamil Was Told She Was Too 'Old And Fat And Ethnic' To Chase Dreams In U.S.

Kimberly Yam
Jameela Jamil doesn't take haters to heart

Jameela Jamil doesn’t take haters to heart.

The “Good Place” actress, an outspoken advocate for body positivity and fair treatment of women in Hollywood, said on Twitter Sunday that when she wanted to move to the U.S. at age 29, not everyone was thrilled with her plans. But she “went anyway, and did ok.”

“Got told I was too old and fat and ethnic to give up my career in the UK and move to America at 29,” Jamil wrote. “Trying is winning. Everything else on top of that is cake.”

Prior to starring on NBC’s “The Good Place,” Jamil was best known as a UK Channel 4 host and later the host of BBC Radio 1’s chart show. The actress has spoken before about how she was “actively discouraged” from moving to the U.S., and how people warned her against “throwing away an eight-year career.”

Jamil didn’t have much acting experience at the time, but she decided to take the leap, and auditioned for “The Good Place” with the help of some... let’s say, inventive storytelling.

“I lied in my audition. I said I’d mostly done theater because it’s harder to track down,” she told BBC Radio 5 Live last year. “Technically it’s not a lie because when I was six I played Oliver’s mother in my school play. I was creative with the truth.”

Since then, Jamil has starred in all three seasons of “The Good Place” and become a fierce body positivity advocate, launching the “I Weigh” campaign, a social media movement where she encourages women to describe their qualities and accomplishments rather than their appearances. 

“I don’t want to worry about stretch marks or cellulite or time or gravity showing on my face and my body,” she said at the #BlogHer Health 2019 conference in February, explaining why she’s so aggressive in breaking down the toxic culture that shames women for their bodies. “These things are deliberately there ― to go full ‘tin hat’ on you ― they are here to distract us, to give us something else to think about so that we’re not thinking about growing our businesses and our families and our lives and our hearts and our minds.”

“It’s so aggressive how pervasive it is and how it’s everywhere,” she added. “It takes someone and something aggressive to tear that down.”

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.