Starring in “iCarly” didn’t feel like a big break for Jennette McCurdy.
Known for playing Sam Puckett in the iconic Nickelodeon series, McCurdy detailed her life as a child star in her upcoming memoir “I’m Glad My Mom Died.”
As the title of the book suggests, McCurdy’s relationship with her mother was complicated. Her mother controlled her every move and career, causing her anxiety and self-loathing as she describes it.
The 30-year-old actress revealed she wanted to quit acting when she was young — long before she announced her initial retirement in 2021 — because she never actually enjoyed her occupation.
In an excerpt of the book obtained by Entertainment Weekly, McCurdy details one audition that scarred her for life.
“I’m sitting in the waiting room mustering up all my sadness when something shifts in me. It feels strange,” McCurdy wrote about an audition in which she was asked to cry on demand.
“This has never happened before, but it’s happening now and it’s scaring me. A part of me is resisting my mind forcing this emotional trauma on itself. A part of me is saying, ‘No. It’s too painful. I’m not doing this,’ ” she continued.
“That part of me is foolish. That part of me doesn’t realize that this is my Special Skill, that this is good for me, for my family, for Mom.”
After the audition didn’t go as she wanted, the young actress tried to tell her mom how she felt, admitting that she didn’t want to act anymore.
Her mom reportedly freaked out, and guilted her into not quitting.
“She bangs on the steering wheel, accidentally hitting the horn. Mascara trickles down her cheeks. She’s hysterical, like I was in the ‘Hollywood Homicide’ audition. Her hysteria frightens me and demands to be taken care of,” McCurdy wrote of her mother.
In a following excerpt, McCurdy continues to share the details of booking her “iCarly” gig.
The day after her screen test for the Nickelodeon show, her agent gave her mom a call to share the good news.
McCurdy and her mom screamed “at the top of [their] lungs” — but for different reasons.
While her mom was excited her daughter booked the role, the “iCarly” star was only happy that her mom was happy.
“I jump into Mom’s arms. She squeezes me. I’m elated. Everything’s going to be different now. Everything’s going to be better. Mom will finally be happy. Her dream has come true,” McCurdy penned.
The book further documents McCurdy’s issues with eating disorders, addiction and unhealthy relationships, and how those issues worsened after her mom died of cancer in 2013, around the time she went on to star in the “iCarly” spinoff “Sam & Cat,” alongside pop superstar Ariana Grande.
McCurdy has previously admitted to being “ashamed” of such roles in an episode of the “Empty Inside” podcast that she hosts.
“I did the shows that I was on from like 13 to 21, and by 15, I was already embarrassed,” McCurdy recalled in early 2021.
“iCarly” ran on Nickelodeon from September 2007 to November 2012, and has since been rebooted on Paramount+.
Miranda Cosgrove, Jerry Trainor and Nathan Kress have all reprised their original roles in the revival, but McCurdy didn’t join her former castmates.
“I’m Glad My Mom Died” will be available where books are sold starting Aug. 9.