Jennette McCurdy Says She Was “Exploited” on iCarly
Jennette McCurdy continues to reveal more details about her experience starring on iCarly.
As scene-stealer Sam Puckett—first on iCarly and later the spin-off Sam & Cat—the actress was one of Nickelodeon’s biggest stars. But Jennette is now peeling back the curtain on what it’s like to be a child star in the upcoming memoir I’m Glad My Mom Died, in which she writes about the toxic relationship she had with her late mother Debra McCurdy, who she says contributed to her problems, including her struggles with anorexia and bulimia.
As Jennette tells it, her eating disorders were exacerbated by her role as Sam, whose gimmick on the show was eating ridiculous amounts of food. “It’s tragically hilarious,” she told The Washington Post in a profile published Aug. 5. “It made me so anxious because my character was constantly eating.”
Jennette tried to change this aspect of her character, but it was difficult to explain to her Nickelodeon bosses why she was so opposed to it. “I tried speaking with the producers on a couple occasions, asking if we could dial back on that stuff,” she said. “I had some sort of reasoning like, ‘I think there’s so much more to Sam as a character, and I think she goes much deeper than this.'”
Jennette added that she couldn’t outright admit that she had an eating disorder, because she didn’t want to face the reality of her situation. Plus, her mom was insistent that she maintain a thin appearance. As a result, she said, “I wasn’t capable of saying, ‘Hey, I’m actually really struggling with this.