Is Australian comedian Rebel Wilson fat? Does anyone know? Lynn Hirschberg, maybe?
We know Rebel Wilson sought an acting career after having a malaria fever dream about winning an Oscar. We know she finished law school after starring in various shows on Australian television ("It was very James Franco of me," she says). We know she has a pro-social agenda ("The bigger purpose in all of this is to inspire girls who don’t think they’re socially all that—who don’t think they’re pretty and popular. To let them know they can have fun and exciting lives.”) We know she's a funny person, who seems deserving of her success, especially because she's using it to push the envelope of representation and absurdity in mainstream humor.
But there is something about Rebel Wilson that we're just not sure about. No, it's not her age, even though Hirschberg notes that "her actual age is hard to determine."
It's her size. That's it. Luckily for us, Lynn Hirschberg's profile of her in this week's New York magazine helps us get to the bottom of this pressing, oblique issue:
Is Rebel Wilson fat?
Wilson is round in a way that seems like an attribute; she has a post-fat state of mind.
Sounds cool, but what exactly does this "post-fat" state of mind entail?
She does not shy away from her size—instead, she embraces the fact that she is different.
Oh nice. How does she accomplish this on her upcoming show, Super Fun Night, which provides the news peg for this piece, for example?
“In the pilot, I was deliberately wearing a very tight white dress with horrible crisscross black stripes that is way too short, and I’m holding a clutch purse that is so tiny that it accentuates my size,” Wilson told me later. “The women from wardrobe are lovely, but they don’t get that I want to dress as Kimmie, and Kimmie does not have the best taste. "
Wilson appeared in seven films, including Pitch Perfect, in which she played Fat Amy.
That sounds riveting.
Pitch Perfect made Wilson an emerging star: Her character, who may be the first woman in films to acknowledge her excess weight without complaint or unhappiness, is riveting.
Interesting. I'm not quite getting the picture, though. It would help my mind's eye if Rebel Wilson had other characters that had "Fat" in their monikers in productions named after food.
Her first show in 2003 was called Pizza and Wilson played Toula, a Greek-Australian girl in a gang of six friends called the Fat Chick 12 (they were each as large as two people, hence the double number).
Is Rebel Wilson able to exude qualities society might not expect from overweight people, or does she only have fat qualities, or is fat her only quality?
Before filming Pitch Perfect, she put another Post-it in her Hello Kitty notebook; this message-to-self, regarding “Fat Amy,” read: “confident, cocksure, and loyal.” Those three qualities have defined most of her characters, despite their size.
What does Super Fun Night executive producer Conan O'Brien have to say about Rebel Wilson's weight?
"Men don’t think about their size as an issue, and neither does Rebel."
I see. Anything else? A Beatles analogy might be helpful. I'm so sorry that I'm still struggling with this.
"Rebel is revolutionary,” O’Brien continued. “Her weight is vastly overshadowed by her talent. It’s like the early Beatles—after the world heard the songs, no one cared about their haircuts.
What does Rebel Wilson think of menus listing the caloric content of their offerings?
Earlier that day, Wilson drove her golf cart to the commissary. “This menu lists the calories!” Wilson exclaimed, studying her options. “A salad has what? 1,250 calories? The hamburger looks like a good deal next to the salad. The littlest thing here is the grilled salmon with lemon sauce. At 400 calories, it is a bargain."… “Normally, I don’t consider how fattening something is,” Wilson said. “But when they write it on the menu, it does make you think.”
So what did she go with? The salmon, right?
She decided on the salmon with fries, which increased the calorie count considerably.
Fries! Now I've heard everything. Next thing I know, you're gonna tell me that she put salt on them.
“I’d already been accepted into the top law school in Australia,” Wilson said, salting her fries.
Who else has Lynn Hirschberg eaten fries with?
Funny you should ask. Vulture, the website component to the very magazine that ran this piece, asked the same question three years ago, after Hirshberg eviscerated M.I.A. in the New York Times Magazine, in part by shadily noting M.I.A.'s truffle fry consumption while discussing her outsider status. M.I.A. later produced her own tape of the interview, which proved that Hirshberg encouraged her to eat the truffle fries (which aren't even that exotic – you can get a giant cone of them at Delicatessen for like $5, and they're very whatever). That was probably the last truly bad-ass thing that M.I.A. did in public.
Oh, and to answer the question, in addition to Wilson and M.I.A., Hirschberg has eaten fries with Megan Fox, Sean Penn, and Bob Berney.
This is getting tedious. Can you send us out with series of fat jokes that Rebel Wilson has made about herself?
Wilson accepts her size without any shame. She’ll tweet a photo of herself with Anne Hathaway from an awards-show event with the message, “Get ready for Les Mis 2 … I’m playing ‘Fat Cosette.’ ” Or: Wilson founded a mini-line of clothing she named Fat Mandi that featured T-shirts with pictures of cupcakes or doughnuts placed strategically over each breast. When Wilson hosted the MTV Movie Awards this past spring, she did running patter about her shape. “My personal WTF moment was when I found out I lost out to Jamie Foxx for the title role in Django Unchained,” Wilson told the crowd. “I was like, ‘I could play black! I’m really into fat white chicks.’ Yeah, I’m inside one right now.”
[Image via Getty]