ByKarly Rayner, writer at
Movie Pilot's celebrity savant
Karly Rayner

It's common knowledge that becoming an actor is not a job for the faint of heart, but you will probably be shocked that these beautiful, talented, and successful stars were all told they didn't have the looks to make the final cut.

Despite being told that they weren't attractive enough to take the heat of the spotlight, these stars all proved the haters wrong and lived up to their true potential.

Meryl Streep

A young Meryl Streep
A young Meryl Streep

The gorgeous Meryl Streep was brushed off as being too ugly for stardom when she auditioned for the 1976 film King Kong with producer Dino De Laurentiis.

The producer's son had spotted a then-unknown Meryl in a play and was so impressed by her that he brought her in for an audition, but unfortunately his father didn't know a good thing when he saw one.

Instead, he dismissed Streep by saying, "Why do you bring me this ugly thing?" in Italian. Embarrassingly for him, Streep was fluent in the language and responded by saying, "’I'm sorry I’m not beautiful enough to be in King Kong.” Cringe.

Judy Dench

Dench making her stage debut as Juliet
Dench making her stage debut as Juliet

Oscar winning Judy Dench avoided the movie scene and stuck to the theater stage in the '60s because an unnamed director led her to believe she wasn't attractive enough for Hollywood. She spoke out in a BBC TV program and admitted:

"I didn’t become a film star in the '60s and that’s because I once went for a film - which I have always kept a secret, and the director a secret too - he said at the end of the interview, ‘Jolly nice meeting you but I’m sorry, you won’t ever make a film because your face is wrongly arranged.'"

That wrongly arranged face is now acting well into its 80th year and has won an Oscar, a Tony, six Olivier’s, six film BAFTA's, and four TV BAFTA's. Suck on that!

Gal Gadot

After being cast as Wonder Woman, Gal Gadot has received a huge amount of body shaming for being too skinny for the role, luckily the actress has not let the fan pressure get to her, though. The Israeli born actress spoke out and explained how she has the confidence to hold her head up high, she said:

"I can take anything. It’s just empty talk. I understand that part of what I’m doing means being exposed. And part of being exposed is being under fire.

When I was younger I would take criticism really hard. But now it mostly amuses me. The true amazons had one boob so it wouldn’t bother them in their archery. So it’s not going to be like real amazons. We always try to make everyone happy but we can’t."

You can read more here!

Winona Ryder

Winona Ryder gave us a glimpse of the colossal pressures on young actresses to fit into a cookie category definition of beauty when she spoke to Interview Magazine in 2013, she revealed her worst casting couch experience when she was just 16-years-old by saying:

"I remember one time in particular. I was in the middle of auditioning, and I was mid-sentence when the casting director said, 'Listen, kid. You should not be an actress. You are not pretty enough. You should go back to wherever you came from and you should go to school. You don't have it.'"

Luckily, Ryder wasn't crushed by the experience thanks to the way her parents raised her to question beauty standards and be proud of being an individual who stands out in the crowd.

Lea Michelle

She might have been cast as the stereotypically catty, beautiful girl in Glee, but when she was a teenager Lea was told there was one thing holding her back from stardom: her nose.

The 28-year-old star revealed that when she was just 13-years-old, her former manager tried to convince her to get a nose job, Lea told Chelsea Handler that:

"She’s like, “How old are you?” I was like, “13.” She’s like, “Great, as soon as you turn 15, it’s time for a nose job.” We’re like, “Okay, we’re out of here.” Obviously, I didn’t get it done. And wherever she is, I mean, she can go fuck herself."

This insensitive comment led to years of insecurity about her nose until Lea's mom convinced her that if Barbra Streisand had a thriving career without a nose job, she could too.

Chrissy Teigen

Even a woman like Chrissy Teigen who has made her living through her gorgeous good looks has been body shamed on the job.

When she was a young model being made up in the makeup chair for fashion chain Forever 21, Teigen got an unwelcome call from her manager. She recalled that:

"I showed up on set and they asked me if they could take a photo and they shoot that photo off to my agency, who then calls me as I'm sitting in the make-up chair, and they say, "You need to leave right now. They just said that you are fat and you need to get your measurements taken."

Although the majority of comments scrutinizing personal appearance are directed at women, the men of Hollywood have also face some hard knocks when it comes to their looks.

Benedict Cumberbatch

Although he has a dedicated posse of the self-named "Cumberbitches" stuffing Tumblr full of pictures of his face, the BBC took a while to see this actor's unique charm.

Benedict almost wasn't cast as Sherlock Holmes over fears that he wasn't "sexy" enough for the role. Pffft!

Taylor Lautner

Taylor Lautner was almost recast in the Twilight franchise he was already starring in thanks to concerns about his body not being up to the role.

Lautner took the criticism on board and managed to bulk up enough to play Jacob through the entire Twilight franchise, despite the huge physical changes the character goes through.

(Source: ET Online, Mirror, Interview, Bustle, The Daily Mail, Wikipedia)


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