Melanie Lynskey and Natasha Lyonne have opened up about starring in the LGBTQ+ comedy, But I’m a Cheerleader.

Released in 1999, the teen rom-com starred Orange is the New Black alum Lyonne as Megan Bloomfield, a cheerleader who is sent to conversion therapy camp to “cure” her lesbianism.

Lynskey memorably played queer camper Hilary Vandermueller in one of her earliest film roles.

While But I’m a Cheerleader earned low box office numbers and received harsh reviews from critics, LGBTQ+ movie enthusiasts have since lauded the film for its satirical approach to gender roles and heteronormativity.

During a recent Actors on Actors interview for Variety, Lyonne and Lynskey opened up about their time making the movie and how it’s morphed into an LGBTQ+ cult classic. 

“At the time, nobody liked it, and now everybody likes it. I do feel like the movie was very ahead of its time,” the Yellowjackets star said. 

When asked if she had any reservations about signing on to the film, Lyonne said she wasn’t hesitant “at all.” 

“I’m consistently shocked by the things we consider shocking. I find it very patronizing when we say something like, ‘Oh, did you see that this straight male actor is play gay? Bravo,'” she explained. 

“And it never crossed my mind to not try to use the arts to tell the truth about what’s going on. When Clea [Duval] and I were on the cover of Out magazine, it just seemed weird to me that people will care. It felt like what you’re supposed to care about is the conversion therapy part. And we’re supposed to try to stop that.” 

Towards the end of her statement, Lyonne reflected on the film’s impact on LGBTQ+ youth at the time – especially when it premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah.

“These kids would be crying and saying, “Thank you for putting out the film.” And I remain so proud of But I’m a Cheerleader, and so genuinely confused that we’re in such a deep future. Prince could only conceive of 1999,” she added. 

Lyonne and Lynskey’s recent interview comes a few months after the latter revealed to GAY TIMES that she was “so proud” to be in But I’m a Cheerleader.

“It’s nice that it’s gained such a following. And I met my best friend [Clea] on that movie,” she said. 

While Lynskey refrained from revealing stories from her time on set – “I don’t know which ones I would be able to share!” – she admits that the whole cast were a ‘bunch of crazy kids’ who would “film all night and then go back to one of our hotel rooms and have a party at like 6am and then go to sleep at 11am.”