Kate Winslet reflects on body-shaming after ‘Titanic’

Kate Winslet is opening up about her life after “Titanic.”

After starring in the hit 1997 film alongside Leonardo DiCaprio, which amassed more than $2 billion worldwide, according to IMDb, Winslet said her life changed dramatically from what it was before.

During an appearance on Sunday Sitdown, “The Regime” star said although “Titanic” provided more opportunities for her in her career, she didn’t like how quickly she was sprung into fame.

“It was really not much fun because I didn’t have kind of an infrastructure, I guess, that went hand-in-hand with being a famous person,” she told Willie Geist. “Like, I lived in a small little two-bedroom flat in North London, you know? I didn’t have, like, security outside my home. I could never have afforded that kind of thing.”

“Also, you know, when you are given opportunities like that when you’re young and you’re a girl, you just shut up and be grateful,” Winslet added. “So there was a lot of kind of, ‘Ha, ha, ha, yeah. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you so much. Thank you,’ you know?”

She also had to learn how to stand up for herself in the wake of body-shaming.

“‘Do people really think I’m fat? Like, I’m not fat. I’m just healthy, normal person. That’s how I am,’” Winslet said of her thinking at the time. “Being scrutinized for it and having to almost explain myself or my shape was just wrong.”

Winslet has previously described the media and the public’s comments about her body as “straight-up cruel.”

Kate Winslet as Rose in the movie

Kate Winslet as Rose in the movie

Winslet’s family was full of actors, and growing up, she knew she wanted “to be on stage.”

“But I certainly never thought that I would be in films,” she said.

After “Titanic,” her family was more smitten with her celebrity status than she was.

“I’m just trying to figure out how to walk out the door and not have an epileptic fit because of how many paparazzi flashbulbs there were in my face,” she said.

Her normal life became “inaccessible.”

“I found that very traumatic, I have to say, but also scrutiny in a way that thank God that doesn’t happen anymore and that has all changed,” she said.

Her experience after “Titanic” led her to take a “step back,” realizing, “I’m famous, but I don’t feel like I want to be famous,” she said. So she pursued smaller roles like 2004’s “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” and 2008’s “The Reader” — which won her an Academy Award.

Now, she’s starring in the HBO series, “The Regime,” following up on her acclaimed 2021 show, “Mare of Easttown.” In “The Regime,” Winslet plays, in her words, a “repulsive, sometimes oddly lovable, challenging female dictator, whose grapple for power– only serves to make her more and more emotionally fragmented.”

Looking back on her experience more than 25 years ago, Winslet said seeing the difference in how female actors are treated “makes me want to weep for joy.”

“I watch wonderful actresses now. They have a voice. They play incredible roles. They don’t have to explain it,” she said.

She added that she hopes she was part of that change.

“I hope, in some quiet way, I, you know, I sifted through the rubble and went through the kind of s— they did in the hope that, maybe, one day, things would change,” she said. “And so now, I can quietly say, ‘Maybe, I did have a little bit to do with that.’ I hope I did, just a bit.”

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