Starring in Olay's first-ever Super Bowl commercial
(airing on Sunday, February 3), Gellar is revisiting the kind of character she knows best: a monster-slaying icon. We talked to her about her newest horror role, what it's like being a woman in a male-dominated space, and of course, her creepiest beauty habits. Check out her answers, ahead.
How do you feel about starring in your first Super Bowl commercial?
"When they first called, [I got] super excited. [The Super Bowl] is up there with hosting Saturday Night Live
. Then, I sat down and really thought about [my] responsibility. You're talking about a male-dominated sporting event where the commercials are aimed at men, but 45% of the viewers are women
and 80% of household goods are bought by women — yet people aren't making ads for us. I thought, This is a responsibility to be in a female-led commercial, for a female product, during the Super Bowl
. I got super excited because my whole career has been about breaking down those stereotypes and being a woman in a male-dominated genre."
What was it like breaking into the horror/thriller genre, which is known for objectifying women?
"It's something I was always conscious of: I represented a demographic of women fighting for themselves and protecting themselves. I take a lot of pride in that. When Buffy
started, there weren't a lot of female-led TV shows, but now a lot of our favorite TV shows are led by women. But that was a barrier we had to break through and that was the fun of this commercial, too. It's not the woman in jeopardy, [it's about] the woman who is going to save the day."
That reminds me of your character Kathryn in Cruel Intentions. She made questionable decisions, but always dominated whatever space she occupied.
"My agents didn't want me to take [that role]. I was like, 'I will fire everybody who works for me if they don't get the fact that I want to be a part of this so much.' I was so passionate. I legitimately went after it because that was something I
wanted to do."