Hilary Swank Will Gain Weight for Upcoming Role

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
9/3/2008 6:20 PM   :  187 comments

The non-fiction book French Women Don't Get Fat is being made into a movie, in which Hilary Swank will take a starring role. According to E! online, Swank will gain 20 to 30 pounds for the role.

E! Online reports that Swank's colleagues are "more than concerned about her alarmingly thin frame," which is "tiny" and "frail" looking. She's not the only actor who has altered her weight or appearance for a role: Matt Damon, George Clooney, Renee Zellweger, Charlize Theron, Adrien Brody and countless others have, too.

I always find it interesting that stars will lose or gain large amounts of weight for TV or film roles. After all, it can't be good for one's health, physically or mentally. What bothers me most is that TV and film executives will hire a thin actor to gain weight rather than a heavier actor in the first place. Certainly, there are plenty of normal weight and overweight actors who are talented and looking for work, right? Why not give jobs to them instead of a person who needs to alter his or her appearance?

What do you think about thin actors gaining weight for roles?


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Comments

  • KHALIA2
    187
    It makes sense to me. I totally agree with you. - 12/1/2014   12:48:19 PM
  • 186
    This is a common practice in Hollywood, and it's been going on for decades. I remember Jennifer Hudson had lost a lot of weight on American Idol (60lb), and then had to gain 20-30 lbs. for her role in Dream Girls. She thought is was so ironic. I don't see it as a totally bad thing to lose or gain weight for a role...it comes with the territory. I only dislike the emphasis on being super thin that is prevalent in Hollywood and the fashion industry. - 12/8/2012   2:34:42 AM
  • 185
    i agree that it makes MUCH more sense to hire a "normal" weight person or someone that is already the weight the role calls for. it HAS to be unhealthy for a person to gain and lose weight like that for roles. what's going to happen when they are no longer actors? their body won't know how to "behave". i say hire the people that are what you need from the get go. - 11/19/2012   3:38:16 PM
  • 184
    As long as she's not going to gain 30 lbs to look "fat" in the movie, this is no different from Tom Hanks losing weight for Philadelphia and Castaway - at least to me. It's to look the part of a role. It's only 30 lbs and she'll still be in her healthy weight range. Hillary is beautiful now and she'll be beautiful after. I think people are starting to bash skinny women for whatever reason. It's not right. Beauty comes in ALL shapes & sizes. And bashing skinny women won't make me any thinner. - 8/3/2012   2:33:54 AM
  • 183
    I wonder if her weight gain is to make her look "normal" or for the part of the movie where her character gains weight. If so, she'll have to lose the weight during the filming and I think producers think that's easier for someone who has been thinner versus someone they hire at the appropriate weight for the role. I'll guess we'll see when the movie comes out. - 11/26/2011   11:06:12 AM
  • 182
    Hollywood is known for excess of one kind or another. Let her have her five minutes of fame if she wants it but I think any person who deliberately gains or loses excessive amounts of weight is a fool. - 6/2/2011   1:08:04 PM
  • 181
    I wish that they'd hire people that are at the appropriate weight for the role that they are taking on rather than seeing actors and actresses have yo-yo diets that help them get the role, but are not healthy for them. - 6/2/2011   12:38:12 PM
  • 180
    I totally agree. They should hire someone who is already the weight they are looking for instead of a "name." They are looking for the box office draw, not the right fit. - 5/12/2011   4:36:38 AM
  • 179
    Right on! I am overweight and I love to act. I hate it when I lose a role because I Im not skinny, but to lose it to someone who is not heavey enough? BAH! - 5/11/2011   9:23:18 AM
  • 178
    I love all the French Woman Don't Get Fat books and recipes! Glad for their author that a movie is being made. I'm not real sure how much of a story is there based on the book, but, like Eat, Pray, Love, I imagine it will be a feast for the eyes of food and self-discovery. And I love Hilary Swank! - 5/10/2011   10:39:59 AM
  • 177
    Every movie I have seen her in she has looked like a starvation experiment gone terribly wrong. Sorry, but she should just keep the 30 pounds on PERMANENTLY! She is entirely too boney. - 4/22/2011   11:18:28 AM
  • WOUNDEDWARRIOR
    176
    It would be okay if every one of us could afford personal chefs and trainers and had all the spare time they seem to have to work out and jaunt all over the world. Yes, I'm jealous, but let them struggle with PTSD and steroid weight gain without their cooks and workout coaches and see how long it takes them to lose a pound!! - 4/10/2011   3:58:13 PM
  • 175
    20-30 lbs is not bad at all. Christian Bale lost 70 lbs for "The Machinist" which is a bit much imo.
    She has always looked pretty toned to me too. - 4/7/2011   2:19:12 PM
  • 174
    I can't find any picutres of Hilary Swank looking too skinny. She looks great and toned IMO.

    PS) who wouldn't gain or lose 20 lbs for $10 mil or so?? - 3/10/2011   2:15:36 PM
  • BLUEBRIT
    173
    These actors who gain or lose weight to be in a movie makes me mad! Yeah, sure, they have the big pay checks for doing it at the end of the day but when there are people like me who are struggling to gain weight for serious health reasons and the same for people trying to lose weight, this is really frustrating. Then, of course, these 'stars' have personal chefs and trainers to help them meet there goals before and after! It's an extremely bad example for our kids especially when it's splashed all over those cheap media magazines at the check out lines. I could go on all day about this subject but what's the point. - 10/30/2010   6:44:56 PM
  • 172
    This skinny star trend is out of control. Example, Jackie Gleason did just fine without being thin. People were not so hung up about size then anyway. She might feel better not being a rack of bones :) - 5/15/2010   8:30:59 PM
  • 171
    Well, that should be interesting. If she gains 20-30lbs, she should look pretty normal...maybe 150lbs. Does that mean that 150lbs is fat? I mean, I know some people who weigh 130lbs consider themselves fat, but really? Is this going to start a new trend - needing to get down to flesh and bones so that we are not considered fat? - 2/1/2010   3:02:28 PM
  • 170
    Sadly, French women do get fat. In Paris a couple of years ago, I saw a billboard on the Champs Elysee screaming: Obesity, the New French Epidemic. And there were plenty of examples walking around.

    I don't care much what celebrities do to their bodies except for the often poor examples they set for our kids. - 2/1/2010   1:25:47 PM
  • SPARKJUNKIE
    169
    I think if she is frail and sickly looking how is gaining 30 pounds supposed to make her look fat ? wouldn't it just make her look healthy ? - 2/1/2010   9:25:37 AM
  • GAPN_CMT2BE
    168
    They get paid LOTS of money to risk their health. Regardless of money they have to know what they are doing to themselves and I am sure that they consider that.. but if i had a personal trainer and a chef i guess I might see it differently! - 1/27/2010   1:12:55 AM
  • 167
    I agree there are actors of the right size for the role but perhaps they liked her personality better for the role? My big concern here is that everyone will expect her to lose those 30lbs at the drop of a hat after the movie is done being filmed! That can't be very healthy either. - 10/27/2009   8:28:06 AM
  • ANGELSWINGS
    166
    If she puts on 20-30 lbs she will probably look better anyways. So many are too thin. I think you do what you have to for a job. - 9/23/2009   1:06:38 AM
  • 165
    I just get concerned about these people in their roles with going up and down in weight as that is tough on the heart---no matter whether up or down. Wish they would read a little about this when researching a film.
    Vicki - 9/19/2009   1:04:05 AM
  • 164
    As an actor, I would gain/lose weight for a role. But I also agree that there are plenty of actors out there that don't need to gain or lose weight that would LOVE the chance at the part. - 8/21/2009   11:46:49 AM
  • 163
    Like a lot of us already know... its about MONEY and how much they can get. Hey, what happens when you hire a popular actress to play a role you want her to gain weight for? PUBLICITY... FREE ADVERTISEMENT! They'll probably save thousands by not having to advertise the movie so much since the "Hollywood Buzz" did it for them. As for Hilary, we can't judge her either way-- it's her career, it's how she makes money, so... back to my previous point. - 8/12/2009   12:12:08 PM
  • SINGLELOVIT
    162
    I agree that they should find actors who already have the weight needed for the movie. I have been acting my whole life and have even been in a few independent films but I could never make it big at the weight I am right now, even after the 15 pounds that I have lost. It would be great if their were roles out there for me so that I could have a chance in the industry. However, I have noticed when a plot tends to be weak, producers will try and get as many famous people as they can so that a bigger audience will attend. - 8/12/2009   11:11:59 AM
  • RUNBECSRUN
    161
    having a big-name leading role is obviously important for any movie's revenue, and unfortunately all the big-name actresses are tiny! of course they're not going to lose $$$ just to go with a smaller-name actress who's the correct weight for the role. - 7/21/2009   2:13:04 PM
  • 160
    If Hillary is so thin as to be unhealthy and frail, the weight gain is probably a good idea. The thing is, she'll most likely lose it as soon as the part's over. Not so healthy. She should just get to a healthy weight and leave it at that (which is probably only a 10 # gain, not 30). - 7/21/2009   1:56:40 PM
  • 159
    I feel it is a ridiculous and unhealthy thing for anyone to do! I agree Hollywood should look around and find qualified talented people who fit the weight profile that they are looking for. I am sick of the message given by the media that no one is okay the way they are. The fat people are too fat and the thin people are too thin! What is up with that anyway?!?!?! - 7/14/2009   7:10:42 PM
  • 158
    I think anyone that gains weight for any reason will wish they hadn't later on. After you get those fat cells they won't go away, they just shrink.. waiting to be filled again. Never get them and they aren't there begging to be filled up again. (That's how it was explained to me anyway) - 7/6/2009   1:15:33 PM
  • 157
    I personally think they should not do that yes gaining weight for her would not go a miss but what message does that send out to our young people hey it's easy to gain this weight and take it off just as fast, that can't be good for anyone movie star or not.
    The average person does not have the resourses to lose it as fast as she could after the movie is over.
    I enjoy her acting, but would it not be healthier to pad her up without her having to pushish her body to tell a story
    - 7/3/2009   7:40:43 PM
  • SEXYSIZE_12
    156
    If she gains 20-30 lbs she probably will just be in a normal weight range, considering most of these actors we see on tv and in the movies appear to be under weight anyway. There is the rare overweight actor you see on the tv or movies, and if you see them their not the lead role or famous and that's why they don't want to use one of the overweight or normal weight people for the role because the public doesn't know who they are. They want to use a more recognizable and bankable celebrity, although I really don't know this one myself LOL. I'll just concern myself with my weight and the other things I have to think about, all I can say it's her job and I guess it's what she's paid to do. But if I was an actress I wouldn't alter my body by gaining weight when I could easily wear a fake suit minus the stretch marks and what ever else comes with weight gain. Keep up the good work everyone. - 6/18/2009   1:20:54 PM
  • 155
    Craziness - she looks great and this is watch the movie/tv world does.....
    padding -camera techniques whatever....but it is like a yo-yo intake food diet and then get rid of it....each to his own....
    sad this has to happen - 6/16/2009   4:49:47 PM
  • 154
    If she can do it, and then lose it if she needs to, then more power to her. I think it's great! - 6/16/2009   12:44:48 PM
  • 153
    I don't think she should have to gain weigh just to do the movie. I think they should use padding and makeup to make her look bigger instead. - 5/30/2009   6:39:22 AM
  • LITTLEROCKRED
    152
    I think it is great that they show people that you can, in fact, be in control over what your body does. They have plans provided by dieticians, of course, but they can lose or gain at will. Most people believe they can never lose weight. After she gains it and tells us she did it by eating fatty steak and doughnuts, she will show us that by reversing it, she can lose the weight. She is in control. not the food. I find that inspirational. - 5/20/2009   7:42:05 AM
  • 151
    Hiring an actor that needs to alter their image for a role can sometimes be necessary. Yeah maybe they should look for someone heavier in the first place if that is what the character calls for, but sometimes you need to find the person who is right for the role. You can't get the same performance out of every actor, Hilary Swank was probably meant for the role and the director doesn't want to choose a different person for the wrong reason. - 4/28/2009   7:10:38 PM
  • 150
    give her a break -
    i'd do it! - 4/28/2009   7:09:05 PM
  • KRANKENHAUS
    149
    20-30lbs might bring her closer to a healthy weight for her height (she's 5'4"?)!

    All the comments about defending the "average" American woman's size are really baffling to me. The average American woman is severely overweight and bordering on obesity for her average height (162.9 @ 5'4"), unhealthy, doesn't eat enough vegetables and could stand to lose some baggage.

    The whole point of getting healthy and losing weight on Spark is to be exceptional and break out of being the mediocre at best average that has the 'average' woman upset with how she looks and feels.

    There's a really thick line between stars who need to put on some healthy weight and defending the near-obese American everywoman. - 4/24/2009   4:56:16 PM
  • 148
    OK, 20 or 30 pounds for Hilary Swank means going from a size ZERO to a 4, or...HORRORS..a 6! The average woman in the U.S. is a 12. I say, find an average sized woman who's good at acting, and give her a shot at the role instead. Oh, but Ms. Swank won a couple of Oscars! Ok then, from a marketing standpoint, she brings the most bang to the buck, so hire the thin one. It's showbiz, folks. - 4/20/2009   1:06:30 AM
  • 147
    well i guess this is the way they make their living . . . and they obviously take it seriously. - 4/20/2009   12:25:27 AM
  • 146
    A lot of people care about how famous a person is or not, so they go with someone who has an established past and well known. I think that's more why they choose famous actors to alter themselves. Not such a big deal, everyone works their way up. - 4/17/2009   11:23:30 PM
  • 145
    I call it abuse! There is no reason to do that anymore. MAKE-UP artists are so GOOD today, they could easily make her obese using a body suit and make-up.
    - 4/14/2009   9:01:42 PM
  • 144
    AMEN! I was wondering the same thing... why didn't they hire a more normal weight woman, rather than make someone shove tons of food in her mouth to look more normal? More of that crazy Hollywoold crap! - 4/14/2009   7:57:17 PM
  • KHALLEXY
    143
    I think it is unhealthy to gain weight but in this case she is a mere skeleton she could stand to gain weight. And as far as why people yo yo doesn't matter if you make a 10k a year to billions you are still human with vices that aren't so easy to over come. Just like there are every day people that loses 100lbs of weight w/o the gimmicks or trainers because they are just simply determined no $$$$ needed. Money can't buy determination and will power that comes with in. - 4/14/2009   6:10:49 PM
  • 142
    I don't know why they can't make these actors look fat with padding and make-up. Who cares if it isn't totally realistic looking? - 4/6/2009   7:11:43 PM
  • FREEBRD06
    141
    In my experience, I lost 10, gained 20. Lost 40, gained 80. This time I'm doing it with eating right and exercise. Even if I could afford a personal trainer to help me loose the weight afterward, I wouldn't do it. Getting back to the right size would require a lifetime personal trainer, which shouldn't be called for, for anyone. - 4/6/2009   12:15:05 AM
  • 140
    I personally think its bogus because they can do it! If I could afford a personal trainer and chef, I would be able to lose weight too! I still dont know why Oprah keeps on yo-yo-ing! - 4/5/2009   9:52:16 PM
  • 139
    THEY WOULDN'T HAVE TO PAY ME TO GET FAT, BECAUSE I ALREADY AM. BUT I WOULD LIKE TO SEE THEM PAY ME FOR GETTING SKINNY. THAT WOULD BE THE MOTIVATOIN FOR ME. - 4/4/2009   8:01:31 PM
  • 138
    I agree with what a lot of people here have said thus far: there are health risks involved in gaining weight, if the actor loves the role, they'll do anything for it, and it's more than likely about pushing a household name rather than a new face. In emphasizing the last point, I could probably see it from the director/producer/casting director perspective. Here they have a famous, talented actor would has graciously agreed to do the role. The thing is they are too thin for portrayal of the character. So, they have a choice (if they really do think about this) to set a time block for when this actor gains weight or continue their search in hopes to find a overweight actor who talent could match this famous actor. They are more likely to go with the first choice, b/c that will draw people who will say, "Oh, I know that actor, s/he is really talented, and the last movie they were in was good. I know then, this upcoming movie will be good." Even with this perspective, I still feel like others have said, give someone who fits the physic of the role a break. Who knows? If they are strong actors, they may be maybe able to pull box office sales.
    Primarily, a great movie is one with strong acting and a strong storyline. Some directors and producers may look at the fact getting at least one known face to pull in the box office sales, and/or having that actor to carry the strength of the storyline. It depends on the storyline of the movie whether that works or not. - 4/4/2009   2:37:32 PM

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