Jurnee Smollett-Bell is getting real about Hollywood's pressure to lose the baby weight.
ET's Courtney Tezeno caught up with the Underground star in Los Angeles on Tuesday, where the 30-year-old actress revealed that she was compared to certain standards even before she was with child.
"Those pressures began well before I even got pregnant. It's kind of unfortunate," Smollett-Bell shared. "I do have a lot of friends who are like, 'How did you do that?' And I think the unspoken word is that it's kind of somewhat what you don't do in your career until later on."
They say resilience is a muscle. We aren't born with an endless amount of it. This was Rosalee's revenant. Honestly, this ep 3 stretched me beyond anything I ever thought I could do. Some of my most proudest work. So many tell you when you're an actress not to get pregnant...as if it's career suicide. But God has bigger plans than that. I reject the notion that as a woman I must choose career over my personal life. I'm an artist, and my life informs my art. Feeds it. It mean so much to pay tribute to that warrior, mama bear spirit in all the Rosalee's that have come before me. To be used as a vessel to tell the story of our strength and our struggle to.. just. Be. Human. But at 8 months pregnant, I wouldn't have been able to tell this story without my amazing support team. In between takes, my baby daddy @josiahbell would feed me and take care of me. While @debimakeup applied the fake blood and dirt and checked on me. @mishatrillxxl would bring me endless water bottles and @shinybootz was my fierce leader I trusted so. And my amazing midwife @gracefullbirth kept mommy and baby healthy and strong. S/o to #tierreTurner and #KelseyTurner our amazing stunt team that kept us safe. Grateful to do what I love. #teamUs #undergroundwgn ...oh and Hunter is a G. He rode with mommy the whole way ☺️
Smollett-Bell didn't miss a beat throughout her pregnancy, and was even filming stunts on Underground while seven months pregnant with her son, Hunter Zion Bell, who was born in November.
"I admire so many women who say, 'You know what? You don't have to choose. You can live your truth in both areas of your life and be a whole person,'" she said. "I've grown up and seen so many women who have. Alfre Woodard is an example of someone. Look at Zoe Saldana, how she's rocking the twins, you know, bringing them on the set."
"I think if in your life you want to do it, you shouldn't have to choose one over the other," she added. "We live in 2017 and, as women, we should be able to do what we love and create what we love."
Underground airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on WGN America.
See more on the crazy stunts Smollett-Bell performed while pregnant in the video below.