We all know and love Chrissy Metz from This Is Us — which is FINALLY returning — but we bet you forgot that she got her big break from American Horror Story! Back in 2014, the now 36-year-old starred as Barbara, better known as her stage name Ima Wiggles. Playing the “fattest woman in the world,” producers wanted Chrissy to look even bigger, so she ended up wearing a fat suit.
“They called it the couch,” Chrissy told Entertainment Tonight back in 2015. “It’s basically couch cushions…We had a separate dressing tent because I couldn’t go in and out of my trailer.” The show, which takes place in the 1950s, showcases the prejudice that an overweight person would have faced at the time.
(Photo Credit: FX)
“I don’t believe that people are overweight because they choose to be overweight, as controversial as that might sound,” she said. “There’s a lot of other things that are going on, but in 1952 anybody that was remotely different — not even as attractive as the next door neighbor — you’re getting labeled.”
And it looks like not much has changed since then. Chrissy still faces prejudice about her weight, and she opened up about how, even in the modern day, she experiences cruelty for her weight. “I remember my sister calling me. She was like, ‘Chrissy, there’s some mean people saying mean things about you,'” Chrissy said. “I was like, ‘They don’t know me.'”
Her breakout role on AHS was key in developing her career, but in a 2017 interview with Glamour, she revealed that she almost gave up on her dream of acting — right before she got her big break.
“And then in 2014 American Horror Story came up. I’d wanted the role of Ima [Barbara] Wiggles desperately, and after I got it, I thought, OK, awesome, this is a jumping board for my career!” she said at the time. “But when it wrapped, there was…nothing. I almost moved back to Florida, but my mom said, ‘You can either be miserable here and not pursue your dreams, or you can be miserable in LA and at least pursue what you want.’ So I stayed . . . I am so grateful that I had such an amazing support system, but when I booked This Is Us, I had 81 cents in my bank account. I could cry right now just thinking about it.”