In Elite Daily’s I Can Explain… series, we’re asking celebrities to revisit their most memorable photos and tell us what really went down behind the scenes. In this piece, we chat with Meg DeLacy about working on Stargirl as well as three of her favorite Instagrams.
Meg DeLacy may be best known for playing the villainous Cindy Burman on The CW’s Stargirl, but just like her character, there’s a lot more to the actor than meets the eye. From fostering friendships with her onscreen enemies to making music that’s authentic to her, the 25-year-old singer, songwriter, and actor has a lot going on. And she’s pursuing it all with superhuman enthusiasm.
Playing the ultimate mean girl may sound hard for someone who seems so inherently nice IRL, but DeLacy enjoys the challenge. As Cindy, the scheming, snarky nemesis of Stargirl (Brec Bassinger) and secret daughter of a supervillain called the Dragon King (Nelson Lee), DeLacy gets to explore a complex character and figure out what makes her tick. “Finding her insecurities and rooting her ickiness through that kind of humanizes her,” DeLacy tells Elite Daily. “Anyone could relate to the high school bad girl, because underneath, she's just as lonely and just as lost.”
She carries that drive to dig deep into her other passion: music. DeLacy released her first single, “Bruises,” in 2018 and since then has dropped several more. “I would die making music forever,” she says. “I love tapping into other people's worlds and leading them to my own.”
Below, DeLacy gives a peek into her world through three of her favorite photos from Instagram.
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.
In The Woods
Elite Daily: What’s going on in this photo?
Meg DeLacy: This photo was taken the night we were we were shooting [the music video for] my single, “Body.” We took over this art house in Nashville — there are so many floors, so many different rooms and little, like, nooks and crannies and then in the back, there's a bunch of skating ramps and a huge backyard. So we just kind of ran around the house all day and captured different stuff for the music video. This was one of our last shots.
ED: What's the story behind “Body”?
MD: It's lustful. It's about sitting next to someone, and you have so much tension because you know you shouldn’t be having these feelings. You have someone that loves you and cares, so why do you feel this draw? It's an honest release of, “This is what people feel sometimes, and sometimes you give in and sometimes you don't. But you feel everything in between.” I found myself in that situation at one point and decided to write about it knowing it might not sound like the best thing, but it's honest. And that’s all that really matters to me.
ED: And the outfit. Please tell me about your outfit.
MD: I became obsessed with silks in Atlanta [where Stargirl is filmed]. There's this company called Lunya and they make washable silks, so not only do you not have to take to them to the dry cleaners all the time, but you can wash them and they get softer as you continue to wear them. They’re like my PJs, so I was kind of surprised [the team] picked that for me to wear — I brought so many clothes for that shoot but they were like, “This one.”
ED: What else can you tell me about this day?
MD: It was so cool. I did my own hair, my own makeup. I went to the market and I got a bunch of stuff for [craft services] — coffee and sodas and snacks and wine to celebrate at the end — and set it up in the kitchen. Then we just jumped in and started talking about what we wanted it to look like, and it was so easy. It was just organically a flow. The whole day was pretty exhausting, but I still was able to get some good Thai food at the end of the day and go to sleep feeling so nice and productive and proud of what we just created.
The Special Effects Lewk
ED: What is happening to your head, and why?
MD: This was taken in November 2019. A lot of JSA members [in Stargirl] have hoods or goggles or masks, and [the Stargirl team] didn't know if they wanted that for me or not, so they had me make a mold just in case. It was so scary because I’m so claustrophobic. I had them put reggae music on because it’s the only thing that keeps me calm, but I didn't tell them I was claustrophobic because I wanted to seem cool. One of the girls could tell that I was kind of clamming up, so she held my hand the whole time.
ED: Was it as scary as you imagined it would be?
MD: They put the plaster on in layers, and by the fourth layer, I couldn't hear anything. It was so nerve-racking. I just have this thing with my ears. My dad has tinnitus, which affects his hearing, and I'm just always afraid that I'm going to eventually get it. If I can't hear my favorite song, if I can’t play my guitar, if I can’t hear my dad singing or something like that, that’s horrifying to me.
I had to internally tap into being calm. Even if you do freak out, it's not something you can just get out of really quickly. They would have to start all over again, and you would still have to be cut out. It was a major mind game, which was kind of incredible because the mind is so strong. And it worked. I got through it. I didn’t freak out. I think that girl’s hand really helped me.
ED: Was it hard to take off?
MD: They had to cut it off, which was a little weird. But I know these people are good at what they do and they do it a lot, so I was just like, “Make sure not to cut my face.” It was a long session — I was there for like, three hours — so I was so happy to just breathe normally. It's just a day in the life of an actor.
Wiggin’ Out With Yvette Monreal
ED: I recognize those faces but the hair’s a bit different. What’s up with that?
MD: [Yvette Monreal] is one of my best friends that I met through [Stargirl]. We were also on The Fosters together, but we didn't even really realize it until we booked Stargirl. This photo was taken on our birthday in Season 1. We have the same birthday, July 9, and we rented this Airbnb for the cast and the crew for like, two days. We woke the morning of our birthday and she turned to me and she was like, “I want to get a wig. I've always wanted to get a wig. Can we wear wigs tonight?” And I was like, “OK, let's go get a wig.” So we left at like 8 a.m. and ran to this wardrobe store and got these cotton candy wigs and boas to wear for our birthday. We were those girls that day. It was so much fun.
ED: What else did you do to celebrate?
MD: I think right after this photo everyone came out with a cake and pie and wished us a happy birthday. I love pie. It’s my favorite dessert. But yeah, it was cute and simple. We stayed up super late watching movies in the kitchen, of all places. There was a TV in the kitchen, and we were all on the ground watching it. It was wonderful, like your classic summer day.
ED: What's your relationship with Yvette like offscreen?
MD: Soulmates. We're so different in so many ways but we complement each other with the differences we have. Sometimes I can get very logical and very practical, and she kind of keeps my life light. She knows how to make me laugh, and I love that about her so much. I'm not a heavy person, but when things hit me, I really feel it. Whenever she sees that happening, she knows exactly how to snap me out of it and bring me back down. I'm so grateful for that girl. It's been a gorgeous journey being able to work with one of your best friends. It's a blessing. Obviously, onscreen, I’m a bully to her, but honestly it's easier to be mean to her onscreen when we’re so close offscreen because we don’t take it personally. Also, the fact that she has the same birthday as me is kinda trippy. I've never met anyone this close to me with my birthday.
ED: How does this photo make you feel?
MD: I think it's a perfect capture of where I was in my life at the time. It felt like love. I was surrounded by people that really got it. We were all in this together, you know, in this little bubble in Atlanta. They all came out to celebrate our birthday, and everyone was so happy. Thinking about it now, it was such a warm feeling. It felt so positive to be surrounded by them.
New episodes of Stargirl Season 2 air Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.