Relatability Hero Lena Dunham Says She Felt "Chubby" on Stage with Taylor Swift's Squad

"I don't think standing next to, like, three supermodels or so is anything even the most confident woman needs to do."

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(Image credit: Archive)

On Monday night, the Film Society of Lincoln Center hosted a conversation between Lena Dunham (creator of Girls) and Judd Apatow (producer of and frequent writer for Girls). The talk was an hour and 20 minutes of fun, and included Dunham's explanation of what it was like to join Taylor Swift on stage during Swift's 1989 tour. (Dunham showed up on Friday night's show at the MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, along with Lily Aldridge, Gigi Hadid, and Hailee Steinfeld.) Short answer: It's not easy. Long answer:

Apatow: You got to perform onstage with Taylor Swift the other night. Did you guys see it? Do you believe it?

Dunham: Judd's really been supportive. I loved it; I recommend it to anyone. If you can, catch the 1989 tour; it's a bombastic and beautiful experience. But I shan't be walking that runway again. I was so thrilled to support my friend and so displeased to learn about the truth of my own height. I've been feeling pretty tall, feeling pretty sturdy, and it was amazing to me, like, "Oh, I'm not tall, I'm chubby." It's different. But I mean, on most days, I feel really great and fine about my body, but I don't think standing next to, like, three supermodels or so is anything even the most confident woman needs to do. And when I socialize with those women, which I've done a little bit, because they're good friends of Taylor's, who is a good friend of mine, I don't feel so strange. But the minute I caught sight of myself on the Jumbotron, I knew something was very wrong.

And [Judd,] I like that you just admitted that it was funny, because I got all these texts from friends saying, like, "I just want you to know you're beautiful," and I was like, "I didn't ask for that." You [Judd] were just like, "That was the fucking funniest thing I've ever seen." And my boyfriend made it his screensaver, because he thinks it's so funny to just look at the height difference and look at all the people in makeup, and then me, like [makes face]. And that's the reaction that's like, "Get the fuck out!"

Apatow: Well, I feel like there's people, and people look like normal people, and then there's, like, Chris Hemsworth and Brad Pitt people, and we can't really compare ourselves to them, because they are aliens.

Dunham: I just think about it like this: There are certain people where I feel like it's like a lion and a tiger, or like a horse and a mule, or whatever, like a donkey and a horse, like, if we had sex, our kids would be sterile. It's not like I even want to touch—like, I wouldn't even want to have sex with Chris Hemsworth; it would be so confusing and feel like fucking a dog—like the wrong thing to do. Really.

I wouldn't even want to have sex with Chris Hemsworth, it would be so confusing.

Apatow: See, I might do it. I think just because I would want to know what it was like. But, yeah, it's like if I was up here with my shirt off next to Taye Diggs with his shirt off. It's just different.

Dunham: Yep, I'm with you. I can't wait to see Taye Diggs in Hedwig. I saw Taye Diggs in the original cast of Rent on Broadway, and it was transporting. In the role of Benny.

Apatow: Oh, sure. Idina Menzel and Adam [Pascal]—both from Syosset. My hometown.

Dunham: Yep. Love it.

Apatow: Yeah, so we have a little Syosset pride.

Dunham: My grandmother is from near Syosset, and the first time she met him, Judd, she sidled up to him, at the Girls premiere, and went, [affecting a thick Long Island accent], "I hear you're from the Island." She's the best. She's really short, she's like 4-foot-11. I wish we'd sent her out next to Taylor Swift.