Oscar-winning film star Emma Thompson has criticised the “terrible” pressure facing young actresses to look like they are models.

The 'Nanny McPhee' and 'Sense And Sensibility' star said actresses in their 20s who were looking to reinvent themselves were often told “you’ve got to be thinner”.

She also raised concerns about the impact of social networking websites, where children are “reviewed every day” by posting on the sites.

In an interview with the Sunday Telegraph, Thompson, 54, said young female screen stars were pressured to be a “specific model size”.

“It seems young actresses are under pressure to look a particular way,” she said.

“They have to be this specific model size, and if they get on to the red carpet, they’re all having to walk like models and dress like models. I think the pressure is terrible.

“If you’re invited to reinvent yourself, in the language in which that conversation is couched, it’s difficult to resist: ’You’ve got to be thinner.”’

Thompson, who has a 14-year-old daughter Gaia, also blamed social media for putting “enormous pressure” on children.

“Children, it seems to me, get reviewed every day,” she said.

“Whatever they do, they post something, then people make comments about it, and critique your life. That seems to be enormous pressure to put yourself under."

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