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BEYOND HOLLYWOOD: Sarah and Victoria
“It’s been a dream of mine,” she says about the film. Yet she has faced difficulties promoting it. We were supposed to talk in a local restaurant, but another interview went way over time.
“You know, I sat in that cafe, and I was more lonely in that cafe,” she says. “Because it was everybody’s eyes devouring and judging you. And then I had to stand up and be photographed, and I was feeling so shy. I am very shy.”
The British tabloids can be “brutal,” she notes, and they were hard on her during and after her divorce. She gained weight and was photographed on vacation with a lover. She went on to remake herself — first through a contract with Weight Watchers — in America. “My second home,” she calls the U.S. “I love it.”
But all these years later, she’s still feeling the effects of her treatment in Britain.
She recalls how Simon Cowell, on “Britain’s Got Talent,” apologized to singer Susan Boyle when the frumpy spinster shocked the world with her talent.
“Why should we judge anybody just from the size of their bottom or their shape or anything?” she says, a note of anger creeping into her polished voice.
She says she feels she’s still judged. She had an interview in New York and found out later that the interviewer called Jean-Marc Vallee, the director, and asked him to admit she hadn’t really done any work on the film. “I thought I’d done really well and it had been really nice,” she says of the interview.
It’s funny the interviewer thought she’d done no work on the film, because it’s clear it’s closer to her heart than nearly anything else she has done.
“When the front pages have said ‘Duchess of Pork’ and ‘82 percent would rather sleep with a goat than Fergie’ and then you’re sitting there … I’m so sensitive, I still live in that. I’m a very fragile, gentle person,” she says. “I’ve had to be strong, like Victoria. So in all of this I’ve related to her because I thought if she can do it, I can do it.”
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