May 31, 2016


Kate Beckinsale Says Michael Bay Body Shamed Her During 'Pearl Harbor' Days

Buena Vista/Getty Images
Buena Vista/Getty Images

Kate Beckinsale says that movie director Michael Bay (TransformersArmageddon) body shamed her when she co-starred on his movie Pearl Harbor in 2001.

During an interview on The Graham Norton Show (via Time), the actress spoke up about her time filming the 2001 war film that also starred Ben Affleck and Josh Hartnett: 

"I think he was baffled by me because my boobs weren't bigger than my head and I wasn't blonde. I'd just had my daughter and had lost weight...but I was told that if I got the part, I'd have to work out and I just didn't understand why a 1940s nurse would do that."

All fair points, but Beckinsale said Bay took it a step further and would praise her male co-stars, but always have backhanded compliments for her. She explained: "When we were promoting the film, Michael was asked why he had chosen Ben and Josh, and he said, 'I have worked with Ben before and I love him, and Josh is so manly and a wonderful actor.' Then when he was asked about me, he'd say, 'Kate wasn't so attractive that she would alienate the female audience.'"

Some quick investigative work from E! Online proves that, yes, in a 2001 Movieline interview Bay praised Affleck ("He has what some of the fighter pilots I'd met had") and Hartnett (saying the actor was "going to be fucking huge.") while having this to say about Beckingsale:

"I didn't want someone who was too beautiful. Women feel disturbed when they see someone's too pretty. I'm not saying Kate's not pretty...[she] is very funny, could hang with the guys. She's not so neurotic about everything, like some actresses. She was solid."

Solid, eh? Kate, we think you're beautiful and wonderful, and we're so glad you're speaking out on some potential sexism that's all-too-common in Hollywood. 

Take yourself back to 2001 with Faith Hill's "There You'll Be," the lead single off the Pearl Harbor soundtrack that features clips from the movie: