These days, Kate Beckinsale is well known as the vampire Selena from the successful Underworld series. As anyone who watched Twilight can attest, otherworldly beauty is practically a prerequisite for immortality, which is why Kate’s insane beauty is never called into question.
Thus, the Internet’s collective outrage Michael Bay, who directed Kate in one her first big Hollywood roles – the love-torn military nurse Evelyn Johnson in Pearl Harbor – actually body shamed the actress when she was a young starlet.
In a recent interview for The Graham Norton Show, Kate revealed that she auditioned for the role just after giving birth to her daughter. Despite having lost weight, she was informed by Michael Bay that she would have to work out if she landed the part. “I just didn’t understand why a 1940s nurse would do that,” she said.
“When we were promoting the film, Michael was asked why he had chosen Ben [Affleck] and Josh [Hartnett], and he said, ‘I have worked with Ben before and I love him, and Josh is so manly and a wonderful actor’,” Kate continues. “Then when he was asked about me, he’d say, ‘Kate wasn’t so attractive that she would alienate the female audience.’”
Indeed, Michael Bay did say in a 2001 interview that Kate was chosen for the role because, “I didn’t want someone who was too beautiful. Women feel disturbed when they see someone’s too pretty.”
He added, “I’m not saying Kate’s not pretty. When you look at Titanic, Kate Winslet is pretty, but not overwhelmingly beautiful. That makes it work better for women.”
All of this doesn’t do anything to douse Michael Bay’s reputation as a misogynist who loves objectifying women in his movies.
To be fair though, he did also say in the same 2001 interview that Josh Hartnett was cast in Pearl Harbor because, “It was a matter of being able to believe him, of his not looking too pretty. Josh has this kind of rugged thing going; he’s a guy’s guy.”
In conclusion, Michael Bay clearly needs to get his eyes checked because it’s pretty clear that Kate Beckinsale, Kate Winslett and Josh Hartnett are all insanely good-looking. That’s why they’re super famous and appear in movies, duh.
Also, since when did anyone go to the movies for “believable“? Pfft. If we really wanted to believe, we’d just rent the Justin Bieber concert movie.
Text: Kit Chua
Images: TPG / Click Photos