Melissa McCarthy is opening up about enduring a toxic workplace.
The “Little Mermaid” actress recalled being on a “volatile, hostile set” that left her “physically ill” due to the allegedly manipulative behavior exhibited by those in charge. McCarthy said she eventually stood up to the problematic leader after multiple people were fired and others left “weeping.”
“I did work for someone once who ran such a volatile, hostile set that it made me physically ill,” McCarthy told The Guardian. “My eyes were swelling up, I was absorbing all of this nuttiness.”
She continued, “There were people weeping, visibly so upset by this one person. And I think that’s why the manipulation worked, because to get to me, this person would fire people I loved, which kept me quiet. It was very effective.”
The “Nine Perfect Strangers” star added, “Then one day, I was like, ‘It stops today!’ I just kept saying to them, ‘It stops, it stops.’ And I know now I’ll never keep quiet again.”
McCarthy and her husband, producing partner Ben Falcone, founded production company called On the Day with one rule for sets: the “demand” for kindness.
“You know, we were so astounded and grateful at getting to build our own little worlds, we were like, ‘We have to build the one we’ve always talked about, where everybody gets to have an opinion and everyone is really nice. It’s going to run a lot better with no screamers or crazy egos bumbling around. Why would we risk destroying that?’” McCarthy said.
The “Ghostbusters” actress noted, though, that “it’s a fist fight to try to get comedies made right now” despite the need for laughter in the current state of the world.
“I don’t know why, because we’ve never needed to laugh more,” she said. “Comedy allows you to sit next to somebody whose ideas don’t match up. And maybe you come out a little closer. I think that’s what I’m supposed to be doing, in this world. I can’t do a lot of useful things. I don’t know how to clean up the oceans, or stop our violent tendencies. But I can hopefully give someone who’s had a bad day an hour and a half to go into a different world where bills or illness isn’t the top thing on their brain. That’s the only skill set I really have. So I have to keep trying.”
McCarthy recently voiced her desire to revisit the breakout comedy “Bridesmaids” as soon as possible.
“That group of women was the most magical thing ever. Almost all of us were really good friends already. I think it was such a magical time,” McCarthy said of the 2011 film co-starring Maya Rudolph, Kristen Wiig, and Rose Byrne. “I would do a ‘Bridesmaids’ sequel this afternoon, right now.”