Melissa McCarthy: Performing In Drag Helped Launch My Career

An overlooked 2014 Rolling Stone interview with Bridesmaid’s star Melissa McCarthy sheds light on her early comedy career which was deeply rooted in the New York City drag scene.

In the interview, which is getting a second look after her now-legendary “Saturday Night Live” performance, the comedian says she was encouraged by her gay best friend, shoe designer Brian Atwood, to get on stage, and she decided to do it as a “dragged-out” character.

“It was me there with my lovely gay guy friends and I was dressed like a big old drag queen,” McCarthy said. “I went by Miss Y. I had a gold lamé swing coat on, a huge wig, big eyelashes.”

McCarthy said that performance gave her so much confidence that she continued to perform as Miss Y for several months. She even attended the drag festival Wigstock during “the time of Lady Miss Kier, RuPaul and Lady Bunny.”

The comedian says she applied what she learned during her time in the drag scene to her on-screen characters.