Nia Vardalos of My Big Fat Greek Wedding finds it tiresome that people constantly ask her about her recent 40 pound weight loss when she has so many other things going on in her life, like the adoption of a three year-old girl. Vardalos is also annoyed that when she did press for Greek Wedding five years ago journalists frequently asked her if it was realistic that her character, who went from frumpy to cute over the course of the film, would be able to bag an attractive guy like John Corbett. There’s a double standard in movies, claims Vardalos, because we often see unattractive guys with super hot women and no one questions it. What’s more is that heavy famous men aren’t criticized for their weight like women are. I love how outspoken she is in this article. She’s fed up and blunt but she’s not rude about it and is just telling it like it is.
It’s just weight. Just 40 pounds of fat now gone from my body, but wow, it’s pretty much all I get asked about. In the last year, I got to star in a movie, wrote and directed my next one, and adopted a three year old from American Foster Care. But guess what I’m asked…how did I lose the weight?
I am embarrassed to be in the position of answering questions about my body again. On the publicity tour of ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’ I was asked over and over again, if, as the writer, I felt it was a fair depiction of real life to have someone of my er, below average looks, hook up with hottie John Corbett.
It’s been years, and I have sat through many a movie like Sideways, where nobody blinks an eye when Paul Giamatti gets together with gorgeous Virginia Madsen. And, then ‘Knocked Up’….well, the visual of Seth Rogan on top of Katherine Heigl made me put the popcorn down and reach for my purse. Not because I was grossed out but because I knew the film was about to stop and Ashton Kutcher would now jump out and go “aha, you’ve been punked, that would never happen.” I waited. But no Ashton. The film went on. And many a reviewer, who probably look like sweet Seth (yes even the women) gave it a thumbs up.
Yes, there’s a double standard for women. Whatever. Yawn, we all know it, perpetuate it – we make it worse every time we buy a magazine showing “Stars with Cellulite.” And women, we do buy those magazines. Yes, we do. No, not just at the airport – you have a subscription, admit it. So do I.
So, it’s our fault. Let’s accept it and move on. Socially, the issue of men’s weight is simply not a big deal. Let’s face it: Russell Crowe is fat and no one ever talks about it. Alec Baldwin just orders his suits a size bigger and we continue to swoon.
Vardalos goes on to write that when she tells people how she lost weight – she worked hard for a year and dieted and exercised, they don’t want to hear it because they’re looking for a magic secret, not the truth. If you’re heavy, or if you’re not, she doesn’t see why it’s such a big deal:
So, what exactly is up with my weight loss? I get hit with this awkward question daily and have answered it in press interviews, at the grocery store, at the newspaper stand. Why? Because I see their anxious, open faces needing the secret, the new pill, the cure, anything. Just please share the secret. So I hesitantly answer and am always met with the same response: the glaze-eye slack-jawed face.
Because they don’t want to hear the truth: I had a blood sugar problem so my Doctor ordered me to lose weight, it was really hard but I did it through diet, exercise and it took a year.
This is when the boredom sets in on the querying person. I might as well just shove an Ambien up their nostril. The gleam in their eye fades and they get sleepy.
No one wants to hear the facts about weight loss. It’s simple. Take that bag of Doritos and throw it as far as you can. Now chase after it. Pick it up, do it again.
Or don’t. You don’t have to lose weight, unless like me, it becomes an issue of health. I thought I was attractive when I shot ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding.’ Studio executives and movie reviewers let me know I had a confidence in my looks that was not shared by them. In other words: they labeled me with words like, overweight, unattractive, unappealing. Hey, just say fat. I love the word fat. I used it in the title. It’s actually not a naughty word. We give it a power it actually doesn’t have. So, you’re fat. Big deal.
If now, I have a sudden validity because I look different on the red carpet, check out my Before pics on my Twitter. (@NiaVardalos) I am showing what happens before Team Miracle comes over in the Hazmat suits and works on me for a few hours. Anyone can look like they make me look. That’s why most malls offer a Glamour Shots booth.
Here are the before and after makeover pics that Vardalos posted on her twitter. She also has plenty of pictures of her friends and family and the fun stuff she does, like going to Greek festivals and eating. What do I have to do to hang out with Nia Vardalos? She seems awesome and I love her perspective on body image and weight. Nia is doing the promotional rounds for her new film which came out two weeks ago, My Life in Ruins, a romantic comedy set in Greece.
Nia Vardalos is shown at the premiere of My Life in Ruins on 5/31/09. Credit: WENN.com. She is also shown in stills from the movie