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Keira Knightley Was Told She Was “Anorexic,” Hated, And a “S–t Actress”

Keira Knightley on the cover of ELLE
Keira Knightley looks gorgeous on the cover of ELLE UK, where she talks about being called an anorexic "s--t actress"

For Keira Knightley, growing up in the spotlight was not easy. The Begin Again actress, 29, opened up in a new interview with Elle UK, discussing the pressures of maturing in the public eye. 

Knightley told the magazine that if she had a daughter, she would discourage her from going into the acting business. 

Related: PHOTOS: Keira's most romantic role

"Oh, 100 percent, I'd absolutely tell her not to," she said. "I would 150 million trillion percent be totally discouraging of [her] doing anything like that." 

"Teenage years should be done privately," she continued. "You should be going out and getting unbelievably drunk, getting into ridiculous situations, making mistakes. That’s what that time of life is about and we should do that privately, one million trillion zillion percent." 

Related: PHOTOS: Keira's hair makeover

Knightley, who appeared in 1999's Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace at the age of 14, went on to reflect on her own experience with scrutiny during her formative years. "I don’t regret it – I wouldn’t do my life any differently, but having lived through it… There was a very long time when [interviewers] were all, 'Well you’re a s–t actress and you’re anorexic and people hate you' which, for a teenager or somebody in their early 20s, is a very strange thing."

Despite the harsh words, Knightley has continued on and filled her resume with copious films. This year she counts credits for various projects, including Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit with Chris Pine and Kevin Costner, the upcoming Begin Again with Adam Levine, Mark Ruffalo, and Hailee Steinfeld, and the fall drama Laggies, with Chloé Grace Moretz and Sam Rockwell. Her personal life has been active as well, as she was married last May to British musician James Righton

Related: PHOTOS: Keira at the Oscars

The busy actress stuns on the Elle cover, accompanied by the lines, "The Secret Life of Keira Knightley." With her shoulder-length brunette locks wavy and down, Knightley wears a pale pink collared dress with buttons from Gucci's Fall 2014 collection in the shot. Inside the issue, she models pieces by Saint Laurent, Miu Miu, and Dolce & Gabbana. 

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