Brit actress saved by outraged Emma
The English actress Emma Thompson has stepped in to protest about an up-and-coming British actress, of seemingly perfect proportions, being required by an American film company to lose weight for her next role. Hayley Atwell may be the latest muse of Woody Allen, starring in his new film Cassandra's Dream, but she didn't measure up for Miramax Films, who are behind the big-screen remake of Brideshead Revisited.
Having been cast as Julia Flyte, the gilded scion of an aristocratic family played in the original TV series by Diana Quick, the 25-year-old Londoner was asked to shed a few pounds.
Thompson, who appears in the remake as Lady Marchmain (opposite Michael Gambon in the old Laurence Olivier role as Lord Marchmain), learned of Atwell's predicament when she invited her to dinner at her home.
Says Atwell: "I went round to Emma's one night and she was getting very angry that I wasn't eating all the food she was giving me. I told her why and she hit the roof." The no-nonsense Thompson was so outraged that she called the producers the next day and threatened to resign from the film if they forced Atwell to lose weight. Faced with Thompson - a two-times Oscar winner - on the warpath, Miramax Films swiftly relented. ·