Lena Dunham reveals the real reason she didn’t want to cast herself in new Netflix show ‘Too Much’
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Lena Dunham reveals the real reason she didn’t want to cast herself in new Netflix show 'Too Much'

Ahead of her forthcoming comedy series Too Much, Lena Dunham has revealed the real reason why she chose not to cast herself, admitting that she didn’t want to experience the same criticisms she faced when playing Hannah Horvath in her popular HBO series Girls.

Instead of getting in front of the camera once more for her semi-autobiographical show Too Much, Dunham instead cast Megan Stalter to play the central role.

In a new interview, she explained that she didn’t feel comfortable putting herself in a position where people could judge her appearance again. Instead, she wanted someone else to occupy the limelight so she could protect her mental well-being.

“I was not willing to have another experience like what I’d experienced around [Girls] at this point in my life,” Dunham explained to the New Yorker. “Physically, I was just not up for having my body dissected again,” she added.

Discussing the decision to involve Stalter and protect herself from any potential external harm, she continued: “It was a hard choice, not to cast Meg — because I knew I wanted Meg — but to admit that to myself. I used to think that winning meant you just keep doing it and you don’t care what anybody thinks. I forgot that winning is actually just protecting yourself and doing what you need to do to keep making work.”

Although choosing to step aside might not have been the easiest choice to make, Dunham seemed eager to compliment Stalter, implying that no one else would have been as fitting to play such a personal characterisation.

Dunham explained: “I remember looking at Meg and being, like, ‘You are my muse. You inspire me every single day to go home and tap out pages upon pages.’ I definitely don’t want to be my own muse.”

Dunham received an onslaught of criticism relating to her appearance in Girls, namely after she appeared naked in one of the episodes, which she regarded as “a trauma all of its own.”

Explaining the impact of such backlash in an interview with The Guardian, she explained she had “tried really hard in my 20s to act as if I didn’t notice,” adding: “I thought I could receive all this input about what a hideous cow I was and also hold on to this feeling that I am essentially, you know, lovely?”

As a result, Dunham ended up taking a break from television and instead focussed on her podcast, The C-Word, which acted as a “therapy” for her past experiences.