Gwyneth Paltrow's 'Shallow Hal' body double recalls almost 'starving to death' after movie release

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By Kim Novak

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The film Shallow Hal is among those early-noughties movies that definitely haven't aged well - and Gwyneth Paltrow's body double has spoken out about the effect it release had on her.

Released in 2001, the film follows Hal Larson (played by Jack Black), who struggles to get a girlfriend due to his shallow attitude - until he meets life coach Tony Robbins in an elevator, who hypnotizes him into seeing only a woman's inner beauty.

Hal ends up falling for his boss's daughter Rosemary (played by Gwyneth Paltrow) and sees her as a slender blonde, when in reality she is plus-sized - something he would not have considered for a potential partner without the hypnosis.

While the movie did well at the box office, it has since come under criticism for the use of a fat suit for Gwyneth to portray Rosemary's 'real' body, as well as the assumption that larger bodies would be less desirable.

Gwyneth's body double in the movie, Ivy Snitzer - who was used for close up shots of Rosemary's arms, torso, and thighs, has spoken out about the horrific effect the movie's release had on her life.

Speaking to the Guardian, Ivy revealed that while she felt "really comfortable" while shooting the movie, and had a great experience working with Gwyneth and Jack, she was chastised by a senior member of the production team for "losing weight" while filming, claiming they told her: "This entire movie is based on you not losing weight!"

However, things worsened for Ivy when Shallow Hal debuted in theaters, as she admitted: "It didn’t occur to me that the film would be seen by millions of people. It was like the worst parts about being fat were magnified."

She revealed that she was once sent diet pills in the post by a viewer that had managed to track down her home address, while others sent her letters declaring their love for her.

"I got really scared," she revealed. "I was like, 'Maybe I’m done with the concept of fame, maybe I don’t want to be an actor. Maybe I’ll do something else.'"

Two years after Shallow Hal was released, Ivy ended up undergoing gastric band surgery, which restricted the amount she could eat in order to help her lose weight.

"I’m sure I wanted to be small and not seen. I’m sure that’s there, but I don’t ever remember consciously thinking about it," she admitted of her reasons for going ahead with the surgery.

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Ivy Snitzer revealed the effect the role had on her life. Credit: Vince Bucci/Getty Images

Ivy revealed that it led to her "technically starving to death" as a result of multiple eating disorders, adding: "I was so thin you could see my teeth through my face and my skin was all gray.

"I kind of alienated a lot of my friends. My mother was also dying; it was bleak. Humans shouldn’t have to experience how very bleak that particular time in my life was."

She also noted that she had not watched Shallow Hal since it premiered and wasn't going to let her 13-year-old daughter watch it either, after being left "scared and sad" that young viewers that saw the movie may have been left with lasting insecurities as a result.

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Gwyneth wore a fat suit to portray the role. Credit: Ken Hively/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Gwyneth herself has previously spoken about her regrets at having starred in the controversial film, and how uncomfortable she was with the role.

She previously told W Magazine shortly after its release: "The first day I tried [the fat suit] on, I was in the Tribeca Grand and I walked through the lobby. It was so sad; it was so disturbing. No one would make eye contact with me because I was obese.

"I felt humiliated because people were really dismissive."

Featured image credit: Vince Bucci/Getty Images

Gwyneth Paltrow's 'Shallow Hal' body double recalls almost 'starving to death' after movie release

vt-author-image

By Kim Novak

Article saved!Article saved!

The film Shallow Hal is among those early-noughties movies that definitely haven't aged well - and Gwyneth Paltrow's body double has spoken out about the effect it release had on her.

Released in 2001, the film follows Hal Larson (played by Jack Black), who struggles to get a girlfriend due to his shallow attitude - until he meets life coach Tony Robbins in an elevator, who hypnotizes him into seeing only a woman's inner beauty.

Hal ends up falling for his boss's daughter Rosemary (played by Gwyneth Paltrow) and sees her as a slender blonde, when in reality she is plus-sized - something he would not have considered for a potential partner without the hypnosis.

While the movie did well at the box office, it has since come under criticism for the use of a fat suit for Gwyneth to portray Rosemary's 'real' body, as well as the assumption that larger bodies would be less desirable.

Gwyneth's body double in the movie, Ivy Snitzer - who was used for close up shots of Rosemary's arms, torso, and thighs, has spoken out about the horrific effect the movie's release had on her life.

Speaking to the Guardian, Ivy revealed that while she felt "really comfortable" while shooting the movie, and had a great experience working with Gwyneth and Jack, she was chastised by a senior member of the production team for "losing weight" while filming, claiming they told her: "This entire movie is based on you not losing weight!"

However, things worsened for Ivy when Shallow Hal debuted in theaters, as she admitted: "It didn’t occur to me that the film would be seen by millions of people. It was like the worst parts about being fat were magnified."

She revealed that she was once sent diet pills in the post by a viewer that had managed to track down her home address, while others sent her letters declaring their love for her.

"I got really scared," she revealed. "I was like, 'Maybe I’m done with the concept of fame, maybe I don’t want to be an actor. Maybe I’ll do something else.'"

Two years after Shallow Hal was released, Ivy ended up undergoing gastric band surgery, which restricted the amount she could eat in order to help her lose weight.

"I’m sure I wanted to be small and not seen. I’m sure that’s there, but I don’t ever remember consciously thinking about it," she admitted of her reasons for going ahead with the surgery.

wp-image-1263225704 size-full
Ivy Snitzer revealed the effect the role had on her life. Credit: Vince Bucci/Getty Images

Ivy revealed that it led to her "technically starving to death" as a result of multiple eating disorders, adding: "I was so thin you could see my teeth through my face and my skin was all gray.

"I kind of alienated a lot of my friends. My mother was also dying; it was bleak. Humans shouldn’t have to experience how very bleak that particular time in my life was."

She also noted that she had not watched Shallow Hal since it premiered and wasn't going to let her 13-year-old daughter watch it either, after being left "scared and sad" that young viewers that saw the movie may have been left with lasting insecurities as a result.

wp-image-1263225714 size-full
Gwyneth wore a fat suit to portray the role. Credit: Ken Hively/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Gwyneth herself has previously spoken about her regrets at having starred in the controversial film, and how uncomfortable she was with the role.

She previously told W Magazine shortly after its release: "The first day I tried [the fat suit] on, I was in the Tribeca Grand and I walked through the lobby. It was so sad; it was so disturbing. No one would make eye contact with me because I was obese.

"I felt humiliated because people were really dismissive."

Featured image credit: Vince Bucci/Getty Images