Carrie Fisher Talks Weight Loss for ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ and Pressure to Lose 35 Pounds

December 1, 2015

Carrie Fisher covers Good Housekeeping and opens up about pressures she faced to lose weight for ‘Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens’ and confirms that she did lose the pounds. She was also outspoken in denouncing Hollywood’s emphasis on physical appearance and more in a candid interview.

Carrie Fisher

The 59-year-old veteran actress and bestselling novelist reprises her legendary role as Princess Leis in the latest ‘Star Wars’ movie, directed by JJ Abrams, which a reboot of the original franchise which dates back to the late 1970s. Yes, she rose to fame not least for that scene in the movie that sees her donning a gold bikini which has become one of those iconic movie scenes.

Now more than 30 years later, Carrie Fisher is back, albeit this time as a supporting player, and alternately known in the movie as as General Leia and General Organa. The female lead and heroine for this generation of ‘Star Wars’ fans is the newcomer and rising star Daisy Ridley.

One might think that as a general, rather than a princess, she might escape weight loss directives but as Fisher tells it, she was pressured to lose at least 35 pounds for the movie. She told Good Housekeeping, “They don’t want to hire all of me – only about three-quarters!”

She went on to say, “Nothing changes, it’s an appearance-driven thing. I’m in a business where the only thing that matters is weight and appearance. That is so messed up. They might as well say get younger, because that’s how easy it is.”

As she revealed in the interview, she did comply. She didn’t say how many pounds she lost, nor did she reveal any specifics about her diet and fitness routine. Thus, defying any expectations that one would hear glowing stories of weight loss success, Carrie Fisher said, “I did it the same way everybody has to – don’t eat and exercise more! There is no other way to do it.”

She continued, adding, “I have a harder time eating properly than I do exercising. It’s easier for me to add an activity than to deny myself something.”

Carrie Fisher opened up about how she felt about having lost the weight and again, defied the norm of these kinds of interviews. After all, we’re used to stars telling us they feel amazing, and that losing weight has changed their lives. But as we keep in mind the context — being pressured to lose weight after all! — Fisher spoke with disarming candor and said, “When I do lose the weight I don’t like that it makes me feel good about myself. It’s not who I am. My problem is they talk to me like an actress but I hear them like a writer.”

She then went on to speak of the superficiality of it all, and said, “‘We treat beauty like an accomplishment and that is insane. Everyone in LA says, “Oh you look good,” and you listen for them to say you’ve lost weight. It’s never “How are you?” or “You seem happy!”’

In a previous interview, with The Telegraph, Fisher opened up about whether or not she had any hesitancy about returning to the franchise to reprise that famous character, and she said, “No, I’m a female and in Hollywood it’s difficult to get work after 30 – maybe it’s getting to be 40 now.”

She went on to open up about typecasting and said, “I long ago accepted that I am Princess Leia. I have that as a large part of the association with my identity. There wasn’t a lot of hesitation.”

Yes, it’s been a long time, and over the years, we’ve seen Carrie Fisher excel as a novelist, and become so famous in her own right that many forget that she is the daughter of Hollywood royalty, Debbie Reynolds and the late Eddie Fisher. But now, very much in the spotlight for speaking out about these merciless Hollywood standards.

Pictures: PR Photos

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