Amy Poehler was a mix of “anxiety and joy” as a teenager.

Amy Poehler was a mix of ‘anxiety and joy’ as a teenager

Amy Poehler was a mix of ‘anxiety and joy’ as a teenager

The 52-year-old actress spoke about her past ups and downs to promote her role as the Joy emotion in ‘Inside Out 2’, which portrays 13-year-old Riley as she battles her cocktail of jumbled inner feelings.

Amy told People about how she can relate to the animated girl, voiced by 15-year-old Kensington Tallman: “I definitely was a mix of anxiety and joy for sure, wrapped up in a Boston accent.

“And (I had) lots of shoulder pads and funky earrings.”

“I guess I felt a lot of what Riley felt in that, your head is full, very noisy. You go from just being… hopefully if you have a childhood that provides you with safety… you go from being not very self-conscious to suddenly really caring about what other people think really fast.”

Amy added about what crowd she hung about with as a child: “I was kind of a floater.”

‘Inside Out 2’ sees Riley go through puberty as she gets ready to enter high school.

Complicated new feelings including Anxiety (played by Maya Hawke) and Envy (Ayo Edebiri) join existing emotions including Amy’s Joy, Sadness (Phyllis Smith) and Anger (Lewis Black.)

Amy recalled about her head also being filled with different emotions aged 13: “(They’re about) what kind of friend do you want to be? What kind of person do you want to be? What do you care about?

“I think that is a completely universal experience.

“And by the way, I’ve said this before, I don’t think it stops at 14.”

Amy is raising two teen boys – Archie, 15, and 13-year-old Abel – and who she has with her actor ex-husband Will Arnett, 54, and says their experiences give her more experience of the turbulent emotions of children growing up.

She said about her approach to motherhood: “I heard someone say – a great psychologist say – that you kind of go from being the producer to the consultant in your kids’ life.

“You have to really try to stop producing so hard and just being available for advice, but you have to walk alongside them a little bit more.

“I think that’s kind of why I related to playing Joy so much.

“In the film, Joy has to let go, and when you’re raising a kid, they’re their own person.

“You just can’t protect them from pain, and you’re really not even supposed to. “You’re supposed to let them kind of have all their feelings so that they can figure out who they are.”

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