Rachel McAdams Reveals Hilarious Guidance from Judy Blume for 'It's Me, Margaret' Role: 'Sexy Mom!' (Exclusive)

Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret is in theaters now

Eric Charbonneau/Shutterstock Rachel McAdams at the premiere of
Eric Charbonneau/Shutterstock Rachel McAdams at the premiere of 'Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret'

Rachel McAdams is sharing the guidance author Judy Blume gave her before playing Barbara in the movie adaptation of Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret.

"Sexy mom! Sexy mom," says McAdams, 44, as she and her costar Abby Ryder Fortson appeared on PEOPLE in 10 Thursday. "She thought Barb was a sexy mom."

The Spotlight actress helped bring 85-year-old Blume's classic 1970 children's novel of the same name to life in the movie adaptation, directed by Kelly Fremon Craig and in theaters now.

Ryder Fortson, 15, plays the film's title character, sixth grade student Margaret, who adjusts to her first year in a new town and first experiences with puberty as Barbara, too, finds a way to fit in as a stay-at-home mother.

"I think it's reflecting something that most of us go through, it doesn't matter when you were born or what decade," McAdams says when asked what helps Blume's story resonate with audiences more than half a century after the novel was published.

Related:Rachel McAdams Says 'Privilege' of Motherhood Helped Her Film It's Me, Margaret (Exclusive)

Dana Hawley
Dana Hawley

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"It's about growing up, finding yourself, understanding your relationship to something more maybe out there in the universe," she adds. "All these really rich themes that start to flood you at a young age suddenly and you're grappling with all of them."

Fortson says audiences are always able to find "what they see in themselves" within Blume's quintessential coming-of-age story.

"It's such a timeless story of growing up and finding all these things about yourself at a time when everything's kind of changing," she says. "The way that Judy and Kelly have both written the character and the story is so honest and so true and so open, and I think that's why so many people are able to relate to it. It really reflects what they see in themselves.

Related:Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret Director on 'Pressure' of Honoring Judy Blume's Book (Exclusive)

Amanda Edwards/Getty
Amanda Edwards/Getty

McAdams previously told PEOPLE how being a parent herself helped her play Barbara.

"She's such a great mom. She's imperfect, but that makes her perfect," McAdams, who has a son and daughter with partner Jamie Linden, said in April. "As a mom, it's not too, too hard to find the messiness, the privilege of getting to watch a child grow up and be their parent. I think that's a really lucky place, a spot to be in, and I think Barb feels that."

Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret is in theaters now.

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