"I can't even believe there was a day when I wore those things."

By Isabel Jones
Sep 06, 2019 @ 8:00 am

It’s easy to conflate actress Lili Reinhart with “good girl” Betty Cooper, the role she plays in The CW’s cult hit Riverdale. But after watching her portray a stripper-turned-scammer in Hustlers alongside Jennifer Lopez and Constance Wu, it’s clear that Reinhart is much more than the girl next door.

Betty and Reinhart’s Hustlers character, Annabelle, couldn’t be more different, but the same could be said for Annabelle and Reinhart herself. “I think Annabelle's very much a follower and I consider myself more of a leader of a group,” the actress told InStyle exclusively. “She’s sort of naive and very young. I don't think she's an old soul, so we're quite different, but that's what made it so fun to play.”

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In the film, Annabelle reacts to stress by vomiting (the faux barf a “magical concoction” of crushed graham crackers and sprite, in case you were wondering), which, luckily, Reinhart only had to shoot a handful of times. The Riverdale star doesn’t have quite as extreme or visceral a reaction to pressure in her own life, but she knows where to turn when things become too much.

“I have anxiety so I get overwhelmed and stressed out very easily, so I usually need to either step away from the situation and breathe, or I text my mom or I text one of my friends,” she told InStyle. “I feel like, when you're overwhelmed, the world feels bigger than it actually is, and connecting to someone and like talking to my mom or talking to my boyfriend or whatever, helps ground me into being like ‘OK, it's nothing's as bad as I think it is.’"

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Reinhart had a strong support system on set as well. “When you know that you're doing a movie with so many women and so many big personalities, you're a little scared or intimidated at what that environment's going to be like,” she said. “Thankfully, it was honestly such a wonderful environment. All of us really got along, and there was no drama. It was just fun. It was just good energy. We were all just happy to be there. We really had a good time with each other.”

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She shared a particularly strong connection with co-star, and fellow Virgo, Keke Palmer. “Keke and I are the closest in age to each other, and we really connected,” she shared. “The first thing she asked me was what's my star sign. She's a Virgo and I'm a Virgo, too, and she says that's why we get along so well. She's so goofy.”

“I very much admire all of them,” she said of her castmates, noting that “[Jennifer Lopez] is a very motherly mama bear figure and very sweet.”

Though the film begins in 2007, Reinhart’s character enters in the early 2010s, an era that feels recent, but, as she points out, is pretty radically distant in terms of fashion. “The costume fittings for this movie were incredible,” she told me. “I mean, you think like 2013 where my character comes in is not that far away, but then you see the fashion that was so popular then and you're like 'Holy s—t, we've come a long way.'"

Barbara Nitke

But as game as she was to revisit the bodycon dresses and double ponytails of years past, there was one trend she wouldn’t touch. “I told the costume designer [Mitchell Travers], ‘I'm sorry but I won't wear those hip hugger jeans. It's just not going to happen.’ We had tried some on and I was like, ‘I can't even believe there was a day when I wore those things.’”

In Reinhart’s mind, Annabelle has a clear aesthetic: “Slutty Hannah Montana.”

“It was around the time period that Hannah Montana was on and Miley Cyrus's fashion was a little bit Annabelle, or Annabelle was a little bit Miley Cyrus circa that 2012,2011 situation. But then obviously you add a little bit of a sexier side to that,” she said.

Hustlers opens nationwide Sept. 13.

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