Did Les Miserables unreasonably sacrifice the well being of the cast?


Les Miserables was a brilliant film that was both ideological and historical all at the same time. But this realistic flick was brought to us with a cost we should be aware of.

Anne Hathaway repeatedly went too far for the role. I used to look up to Anne when she was a beautiful ordinary geek in Princess Diaries. And she addressed the issue of work life balance in The Devil Wears Prada. Heck, I can't help but applaud her performance in good old Les Mis. But she has not been sensible away from the camera.

The whole world watched Anne starve herself for an impoverished character. Isabelle Allan revealed to the media the truth about Anne's diet. It's pretty much constant salads. Apparently you're a fine role model for the next generation no matter what you do, as long as it's for a movie. Hang on a second. I know what happens when you eat next to nothing and drop loads of kilos quickly. Oh right, you pass out. That's what happened to me anyway.  So let's have an actress turn skinny for art, with teens all over the world watching her every move. Sorry Anne, it doesn't matter how amazing the music is. You don't have to be size 6 to sing a song, even if your character is.

But Anne did something else around the same time. Of course she would deny any deliberate intention after she flashed when getting out of a car. But let's clarify something here: don't people normally know if they have underwear on or not? Wouldn't it be sensible at a public event to, I don't know, maybe ensure such under garments are arranged? A lot of people have asked the same thing. My favourite blog Mamamia  doesn't support the publication of pictures that invade privacy. But let me suggest another explanation for the controversy. Anne knew a flash like that would get into the papers. This is a bold accusation to make. And we will never know for sure. But I would hate to think our original Princess Mia would use stunts like this just to make headlines. Then again, maybe she just hasn't figured out how to dress herself properly. Either way, Anne, please think of the message you're sending to your fans.

This isn't one big bag-out about Anne. I feel genuinely worried about her. Along with other cast mates who did great performances at dramatic costs. If Hugh Jackman wants to sing in the gym for hours on end, so be it. His voice stands out for a screen actor. But I felt pretty worried when he went for the crash-diet strategy. We might not know Hugh's actual kilo count because he bulked up instead. Whereas Anne's character was bony, Hugh's was a muscle bound working convict. Maybe the hollow cheeks we saw in Les Miserables were exaggerated with make up. But there is definitely more to it. I still admire Hugh Jackman as a performer, and he could have portrayed Jean just as well without yo-yo dieting.

Definitely watch Les Miserables. It will make you cry. And then you will want to see it again to relive the journey. But we will admire the cast more if they keep looking after themselves.

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