Lily Collins tapped into her own experience with an eating disorder for her role in movie To The Bone.
The 27-year-old actress stars in the upcoming movie as Ellen, a young woman who is battling anorexia.
Written and directed by Marti Noxon, the narrative is based on her own encounter with an eating disorder, with the film premiering at the Sundance Film Festival on Sunday (22Jan17).
Speaking at the event, Lily explained that she had a very intimate connection with her character, as she herself suffered with an eating disorder as a teenager.
“This was definitely a more dramatic role for me, I suffered with eating disorders when I was a teenager as well,” she said, according to People.com. “I wrote a book last year and I wrote my chapter on my experiences a week before I got Marti’s script and it was like the universe putting these things in my sphere to help me face, kind of dead on, a fear that I used to have.”
Lily, who is the daughter of singer Phil Collins, added that she felt like the ideal person to take on the role, considering her own experience and ability to speak on the topic. She also wants others to feel encouraged to come forward and share their own stories in order to open up a wider awareness of the subject.
“(I took on the role) to explain it as someone who’s gone through it and to open up a topic that is considered quite taboo with young people nowadays, male, female, and to really start a conversation,” she said.
For the part, the brunette beauty was required to lose weight, but did so under the care of a nutritionist. However, she admits that the physical transformation was only part of the process, and it did cause her to revisit her own battle with the debilitating illness.
“It caused me to have to emotionally go there, but in a way that was the most safe, healthy way possible with a nutritionist, and really to physically go there but also emotionally and it did require a different set of emotional skills, to kind of go back in time for me, with you know, my experiences,” she shared.