When Renée Zellweger reappeared on the Hollywood scene after a multi-year absence, critics and media outlets critiqued the former A-lister’s “different” appearance, saying she must have had plastic surgery.
Now, Zellweger has penned an essay for The Huffington Post claiming that the accusations are false, and even if they were true, it shouldn’t matter.
READ MORE: Renée Zellweger’s looks under scrutiny in bizarre film-critic article
“Not that it’s anyone’s business, but I did not make a decision to alter my face and have surgery on my eyes,” she wrote. “This fact is of no true importance to anyone at all, but that the possibility alone was discussed among respected journalists and became a public conversation is a disconcerting illustration of news/entertainment confusion and society’s fixation on physicality.”
Zellweger, 47, also focused on the “double standard” that women in Hollywood face from the media — something that male actors don’t really have to deal with.
“It’s no secret a woman’s worth has historically been measured by her appearance,” she said. “Although we have evolved to acknowledge the importance of female participation in determining the success of society, and take for granted that women are standard bearers in all realms of high profile position and influence, the double standard used to diminish our contributions remains, and is perpetuated by the negative conversation which enters our consciousness every day as snark entertainment.”
“Too skinny, too fat, showing age, better as a brunette, cellulite thighs, facelift scandal, going bald, fat belly or bump? Ugly shoes, ugly feet, ugly smile, ugly hands, ugly dress, ugly laugh… the resulting message is problematic for younger generations and impressionable minds, and undoubtably triggers myriad subsequent issues regarding conformity, prejudice, equality, self acceptance, bullying and health.”
Fans of Zellweger and other celebrities were quick to congratulate the actress on her bold essay, praising her for stepping up and supporting women who have to deal with criticism on a daily basis.
Zellweger is set to reprise her role as the titular Bridget Jones in Bridget Jones’s Baby in September. It’s the first time we’ve seen her leading a major motion picture since 2010’s My Own Love Song, alongside Forest Whitaker.