Lili Reinhart and Cole Sprouse broke up, but can she talk about something else? The Riverdale star opened up in an interview with the Los Angeles Times about the media obsession with her love life, and her desire to do and be more.
Reinhart says the focus has led her to self-censor what she puts out to her 25 million followers on Instagram: “This pandemic has been incredibly hard, and it’s hard to stay positive. I want to post sad songs on my Instagram just like everyone else does. But I hold myself back, because I know I have millions of people watching me who want to dig through every little thing I post and try to figure out the meaning behind it.”
She is in the midst of debuting two new projects: Chemical Hearts, a film for that involves a battle with depression from which she drew on personal experience, and “Swimming Lessons,” her debut book of poetry.
On her role for Chemical Hearts, she says: “I used a lot of my own inner turmoil. I don’t really describe myself as bubbly or joyful. I’m making myself out to be, like, the Grinch over here. But I’ve lived with depression for a long time now, so playing a girl who is clearly feeling somber and going through heartache and grief wasn’t so foreign to me. It wasn’t that hard for me to access.”
She is in the biz for the long haul, she says, and wants people to see her as more than a teen heartthrob: “I would like people to start seeing me as a film actress. I want people to see me and know: ‘Hey, I’m in this for the long haul.’ This is a career for me. I’m not just gonna be on Riverdale for five years and then disappear.”
After her co-star Vanessa Morgan expressed frustration about her portrayal on Riverdale, Reinhart reached out to her, determined to be the change that she believes in.
She says: “I mean, the show historically has been pretty white. The show’s creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa is very conscious of it now to make sure that that doesn’t happen again and Vanessa doesn’t feel that she’s put in that position again. I feel as a producer now moving forward how important it is that I’m not stereotyping, stereocasting anything — really making sure I’m going out of my way to do right by Black people, by transgender people, by people who don’t look like me.”
Reinhart is also open to exploring new romantic avenues. She says she first questioned her sexuality in the fifth grade: “I thought: ‘Do I like girls? I don’t know.’ As I’ve gotten older, the answer has become ‘Yes. Clearly, I do.’ … I think I just felt at this point in time: Why not? If suddenly I started dating a girl publicly, I didn’t want people to be, like, what the …? Not that I would even owe anyone an explanation. Because I don’t.”