Kate Beckinsale Says She Was Body Shamed by 'Pearl Harbor' Director Michael Bay

"I think he was baffled by me because my boobs weren't bigger than my head, and I wasn't blonde," says Kate Beckinsale

Photo: Angela Weiss/Getty

brightcove.createExperiences(); Kate Beckinsale revealed that she was criticized about her appearance by director Michael Bay when they worked together on the 2001 film Pearl Harbor.

“I don’t think I fitted the type of actress Michael Bay the director had met before,” the actress, 42, said as a guest on Friday’s episode of The Graham Norton Show, according to Digital Spy. “I think he was baffled by me because my boobs weren’t bigger than my head, and I wasn’t blonde.”

Beckinsale says she was told she needed to get in shape to play her role – even though she didn’t see why what her body looked like was relevant to her character.

“I’d just had my daughter and had lost weight, but was told that if I got the part, I’d have to work out,” she said. “And I just didn’t understand why a 1940s nurse would do that.”

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According to Beckinsale, Bay continued to insult her looks throughout the press tour for the movie.

“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’. Then when he was asked about me, he’d say, ‘Kate wasn’t so attractive that she would alienate the female audience.’ ”

“He kept saying it everywhere we went,” said Beckinsale, “and we went to a lot of places.”

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