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Hollywood actor Drew Barrymore says she was stressed throughout shooting for her 1999 movie “Never Been Kissed” as she was told by studio executives that she looked “too unattractive” in the film. In the romantic comedy, Barrymore played the role of Josie, a copy editor without any real relationship experience, who goes undercover to a local high school to get a front-page story. During an episode of her chat show “The Drew Barrymore Show”, the 49-year-old actor said while she had a lot of fun on set, she was also a bit scared about how the movie would turn out.

“I was very stressed throughout the movie. I was so scared during the whole film because I knew if it didn`t work, we weren`t going to get another chance. We had so much fun making it but I had to clench my stomach the whole time,” she said. Barrymore said she was advised to keep herself in control as she was getting too much into the comedy element, which was making her appear less appealing on screen.

“I would get these calls from the studio and they were like, `I`m sorry, but you`re just looking too unattractive. Stop it.` And I was like, `Good.` And they were like, `No, no, no, no, no. It`s too far.` So I was forced to even tone it down a little bit because I had gone even farther than that,” she added. The actor recalled agreeing to tone down her performance only when the studio`s explanation appealed to her “sensibilities rather than my ego”, she said. According to Barrymore, the studio suggested she must not “lose the heart because you`re going so far for the comedy”.

“Never Been Kissed” was also her production debut via her banner Flower Films. At the time, Barrymore said, the studio executives were “weary of actors being producers”. “A lot of it wasn`t necessarily working, and it didn`t mean because you were an actor, you knew how to produce the film. And it was about economics. So if you didn`t make the film work, and you produced it as an actor, you are likely to not be able to do it again,” she added. “Never Been Kissed”, directed by Raja Raymond Gosnell, also starred Michael Vartan, David Arquette, Leelee Sobieski and Jessica Alba.

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