Why 'Paper' Picked Amanda Bynes to 'Break the Internet' (Exclusive)

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Amanda Bynes wowed audiences with her return to the limelight on the cover of PAPER magazine and now the publication’s editor is sharing the reasons behind their decision to choose the 32-year-old actress for the issue’s "Break the Internet" theme.

Bynes appears on PAPER's third cover for their 2018 "Break the Internet" issue, wearing jeans, a white blouse and plaid blazer, while sitting on a stool with her blonde locks flowing. The shoot marks the first magazine cover in years for the actress, who retreated from the public eye following a tumultuous period that involved driving violations, disturbing tweets and the actress being hospitalized under a psychiatric hold.

PAPER's executive editor, Abby Schreiber, spoke to ET Live on Monday to share why Bynes was picked for the cover and revealed some of the regrets the actress discussed during the in-depth interview.

“When we were putting together this year’s 'Break the Internet' issue, we were thinking a lot about conversations happening around the country and world, particularly [about] challenges going on with the way the internet is set up,” Schreiber explained. “So, we were really looking at it like, ‘Maybe the internet is already broken. We don’t need to break it again. Instead, how can we approach it from a different angle?’” And, instead of having a crazy, flashy shoot, we thought, 'Let’s tell someone’s story and show someone’s journey.'”

“One thing that always intrigued us about the idea of having Amanda on the cover was that she was really among the first people in the public eye who went through a lot of challenges on social media,” Schreiber continued. “Fans and media saw her going through struggles in real time, often on Twitter. So, that was an interesting idea for us to look at how someone’s life really changed dramatically, due in part to social media. She says Twitter sort of ruined her life, but that she doesn’t blame the platform. She takes complete ownership over her actions. But it was something that impacted [her] for sure.”

During the interview, Bynes candidly discussed her experience with drug abuse and many of the lows she experienced as a young actress, from when she starred in Nickelodeon’s All That to appearing in shows like, What I Like About You, and films like, She’s the Man.

Schreiber says Bynes reflected on her struggles with “a mixture of resilience, strength, sometimes shame, sometimes sorrow, sometimes humor.” She added that the star also appeared remorseful about some of her behavior during the peak of her time in the spotlight.

“She did share some regrets about the way she behaved at that time and I think she takes total ownership and accountability over her actions,” Schreiber said. “We did talk about how she felt very sorry about some of the pain or some of the situations her behavior had caused.”

Bynes told PAPER that she’s now four years sober and set to receive her Associate of Arts degree from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles in the coming weeks.

She also shared her desire to return to acting.

“I think she’s starting to put those foundational bricks in place and is planning to start little-by-little, taking meetings again and assembling a team,” Schrieber said. “So, I really do think we’re going to start seeing Amanda, whether on TV or film, very soon… along with possibly starting her own fashion line.”

See more from PAPER's cover feature with Bynes below.

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