Scarlett Johansson counts herself and her girlfriends among young women who once sought health care from Planned Parenthood, and she says cutting funding would be a step “moving backward when we’re supposed to be moving forward.”
“We’re talking about preventing cervical and breast cancers. Growing up, I used [PP’s] services. All my girlfriends did—not just for birth control but for Pap smears and breast exams,” Johansson tells Cosmopolitan in the magazine’s May cover story.
“There are countries at war, there’s terrorism, global warming, and we’re like, ‘We should definitely cut the budget for Planned Parenthood. Let’s take away the availability of women’s health initiatives!’… It’s nuts.”
The Captain America star delivers a spirited defense of Planned Parenthood in the interview: “You read about the rise of back-alley abortions, women having to mutilate themselves and teenagers having to seek help in unsafe conditions, and for what?!”
She also opens up about a long past romance that drove her to rock bottom. “You have to get to your breaking point… rock bottom is the moment when you’re like, ‘I’ve lost myself.”
It was a long time ago, and the man in her life was “forever unavailable…but, like, so attractively unavailable.” Like legions of young women drawn to unattainable men, Johansson struggled to meet him more than halfway. “Why am I standing outside this bar at 1:30 in the morning texting while my friends are inside? Or taking a taxi to see him at some ungodly hour? This isn’t me.’
“That is the moment you’ve gotta cut it off. Otherwise, it will keep coming back, suck your blood.”
Johansson was married to actor Ryan Reynolds from 2008 until 2010. She married Romain Dauriac in October 2014, and they have a 19-month-old daughter.
Asked about equal pay for women in Hollywood, Johansson answered in the context of her own experience. “… I am very fortunate, I make a really good living, and I’m proud to be an actress who’s making as much as many of my male peers at this stage…
“I think every woman has [been underpaid], but unless I’m addressing it as a larger problem, for me to talk about my own personal experience with it feels a little obnoxious. It’s part of a larger conversation about feminism in general.”
The interview hits the newsstands April 12. You can go to Cosmopolitan to see a preview.