Sarah Michelle Gellar says being a young woman in the entertainment industry “hasn’t been easy,” but that “victim blaming and shame” keeps her from opening up publicly about those stories.
The IS Game Buffy the vampire slayer alum, 45, has returned to acting after a multi-year hiatus The Crazy People death of co-star Robin Williams to attend her family with Freddie Prinze Jr. She plays a principal in the dark high school comedy take revenge, out now on Netflix, and is starring in and executive producing Teen Wolf turn out Wolf pack for Paramount+. She tells the New York Times she feels she is now in an “adult career” — and life is not much from where she started.
As for where she started – and what she’s experienced along the way – it’s been a journey. Asked by the outlet if she had a generally good experience as a teenager and young woman in the industry, Cellar – who won a daytime Emmy at age 18 for All My Children – replied, “No. It was very difficult. There were no big female roles when I was growing up. It was the girl role, the wife role. That’s why Buffy was so great, because She really had something to do, and then we did I Know What You Did, where the women were figuring things out. That was a whole new turn of events.”
That was just one part. The other was inappropriate behavior behind the scenes, which she talked about but indicated that she was not going to go into detail.
“There is another side to being a young girl in the business,” she continued. “Growing up in New York, there was a bit of street sense going into it, which is helpful. But no, it wasn’t easy. And I’ve had my fair share of experience, I didn’t choose – I didn’t I can. ‘t win by telling my stories, emotionally, for me. I’m at people who tells their stories, and I’m inspired by that. But in this world where people are torn apart, and victims of blame and shame , I only keep my stories. in here.”
Of course, though Buffy – which ran from 1997 to 2003 – was amazing for as long as her role, we now know that some of the women on the series felt threatened by the show’s creator and EP Joss Whedon. Whedon was accused of on-set misconduct by alums Charisma Carpenter, Michelle Trachtenberg and Amber Benson in 2021. Gellar stood by the victims at the time saying she was “proud of them for speaking out.”
Whedon broke his silence about the Buffy settling claims — and other allegations of misconduct — earlier this year. Two days later, Cellar shared a post on social media that said, “I can’t bring back the past, but I can fight for the future.” In her NYT in the interview, she was asked if she wanted to elaborate and talked about her efforts to create a “safe space” for young performers on the sets she’s on after what she’s learned and experienced.
“Especially now, I go into my projects as an executive producer,” she said. “Wolf pack, for example. I have these two young girls and two young boys [acting] on him. I’ve made it clear from Day 1 that if there are things the production wants to talk to them about, I want to put them through. Because I am there. And I would [the performers] always have a safe space.”
Cellar also talked about marriage to Prinze as the couple recently celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary.
“I think we live in a very disposable world at the moment,” she said. “When I was a kid, if your TV broke, you took it to the repair shop and got your TV fixed. Now, if your TV breaks, you get a new one. I think sometimes we look at relationships like that. you have to be willing to put in the work. That’s something we’ve always been willing to do. You have ups and downs, but you don’t walk away.”
Gillar also spoke about his role in Take Revenge and how her character in the comic is modeled after her fame Cruel Intentions character, Kathryn Merteuil. Although she was the young star on so many aughts projects, she is the principal advice for the teenagers who have stars including Camila Mendes and Maya Hawke.
“I wouldn’t want to be 17 again for anything,” Gellar said. “Thirty-two maybe, but not 17.”
This week, Cellar took her 12-year-old daughter Charlotte Prinze with her to a screening of the film in Hollywood. The couple’s children – including 10-year-old son Rocky – are rarely seen, and Cellar tends to hide their faces when she posts photos of them on social media.