Rebel Wilson talks about losing her virginity at 35 and first orgasm (alone) at 39

by

Alexandra Alter

About five years ago, when she was 39 years old, actress Rebel Wilson faced a dilemma. She had just had a string of successes, having earned US$20 million (more than R$105 million) for her comedic roles in “The Perfect Choice 3”, “Megarrromantic” and “The Hustlers”. But a visit to a fertility doctor filled her with doubts.

Her weight — at the time 102 kg — could make it difficult to obtain viable eggs, the doctor suggested. After her appointment, she was devastated and called her talent agent and said she planned to get healthier. Her agent wasn’t very happy.

“The agency liked me fat because they made hundreds of thousands of dollars in commission for every movie in which I played the fat funny girl,” she writes in her new autobiography, “Rebel Rising.” Losing weight, she feared, could jeopardize her “millionaire role.”

In “Rebel Rising,” which Simon & Schuster recently released in the U.S., Wilson details his struggles with food addiction and writes candidly about intimate episodes in his life. Raised in the suburbs of Sydney, Australia, as the oldest of four siblings, Wilson had an unconventional childhood: her family ran a pet products business and bred show beagles, and Wilson had her first taste of show business. as a junior dog handler at age 8.

Success did not come easily. Wilson was rejected five times by Australia’s National Institute of Dramatic Art and auditioned for nearly 30 roles in Hollywood before being cast in the 2011 comedy “Bridesmaids” in a performance that launched her film career.

The autobiography has already generated controversy, especially his account of making the 2016 comedy “Spy Brother”, with Sacha Baron Cohen. Wilson writes that during filming, Baron Cohen made her uncomfortable by asking her to appear nude in the film (they hired a stunt double). She also alleges that he encouraged her, when they were in costume and acting out a sex scene, to stick his finger in her anus, which she refused to do, while others present filmed the encounter with cell phones.

Through a representative, Baron Cohen denied Wilson’s account. “While we appreciate the importance of speaking out, these demonstrably false allegations are directly contradicted by extensive detailed evidence, including contemporaneous documents, footage and eyewitness accounts present before, during and after the production of ‘Spy Brother,'” said the representative for Baron Cohen in a statement.

There are also surprisingly personal revelations in “Rebel Rising.” Wilson writes about losing her virginity at age 35 and says she had her first orgasm (alone) at age 39. She details his secret romantic relationship with a professional tennis player, his experience meeting and falling in love with his fiancée, fashion entrepreneur Ramona Agruma, and having a baby with a surrogate.

In a recent interview in midtown Manhattan, Wilson talked about how her weight loss has affected her career and public image, how her family’s beagles may have led her to pursue an acting career, and how a fever-induced hallucination led her to to Hollywood.

The interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

In the first chapter, you write about your fear that losing weight would hurt your career. Have you experienced any negative repercussions or retaliation because of weight loss?

There were some people who said, ‘Oh, we don’t think she’s funny anymore.’ Or: ‘Now she’s lost me as a fan because I can’t identify with her anymore.’ But I think if you read the book, you will understand my journey with weight and health. Obviously, I have a sweet tooth. That’s my weakness. And in times of stress, I dealt with it by eating. I don’t think that will ever, ever go away.

Which parts of your autobiography are you most excited to make public?

The part about losing my virginity at 35. This was something that absolutely no one knew. And I thought: ‘Should I put it in the book?’. But then I thought, ‘Maybe there are other latecomers out there who can find solace in that fact about me.’ Because there really wasn’t anything weird or wrong with me. It was just growing up in a very Christian environment and then not really wanting a relationship and focusing on my career. And then I thought, ‘You know what, if I’m doing an autobiography and writing about everything, I’m going to put that in here too.’

You write in the book that you didn’t tell not even to Mickey Gooch Jr., her ex-boyfriend, that he was her first.

Well, he was the first person to read it. So he knows now.

You described your romantic relationship with a professional tennis player, which led to a lot of speculation about who the person was. Did you worry in any way that you might be exposing this person or harming their privacy?

There are some rumors going around about who it is. But I don’t think anyone would ever guess. And I don’t want their privacy to be violated by my memoir.

But it’s an important part of your story, in terms of your discovery that you were attracted to women.

Yes. I thought, ‘You don’t start dating a woman overnight.’ I don’t think I would be in a relationship with Ramona if I hadn’t met the tennis player. And it opened my heart, I think, to dating a woman.

Probably the most important headlines the book has made so far are your description of working with Sacha Baron Cohen, who you say humiliated you on set. He contested his version and, recently, images of the scene that was not in the film and which shows you acting in the sex scene together, in character, were published by The Daily Mail. What do you think of his answer?

I’m sure they’ll never release the iPhone footage of him asking me to do this, to insert my finger in his anus, and me saying, ‘No, why are you doing this? Why are you asking me to do this? Where is the director?’. Of course they won’t release this footage.

What is your response to his denial?

Just knowing his character, I obviously expected that. I knew he wouldn’t take it, probably ‘nicely’. This is not about canceling someone. It’s part of my story — my memoir. And I am allowed to write about what happened to me and how it made me feel.

You’re very open about money and describe how you managed to negotiate a $10 million fee for ‘Pitch Perfect 3’ after discovering that the studio did market research that showed how much people loved your character, ‘Fat Amy. ‘. I found it refreshing to read about how much you earn, something some successful people don’t feel comfortable talking about.

Universal Studios is amazing, but did they make a lot of money from the ‘Pitch Perfect’ movies? Yes. So even though I absolutely loved all those people at Universal, did I use that advantage to my advantage? Yes. And at the last minute, I said, ‘You know, it’s a lovely offer of $9 million [mais de R$ 47 milhões]. But I need one more to get to 10’. That’s a huge milestone when you’re an actor. Receiving an eight-figure offer for a woman is huge. Sometimes women don’t like to talk about it. While I don’t think men have a problem saying they make $20 million [quase R$ 105 milhões] per film.

There are some delightfully quirky stories from his childhood, like his mother raising beagles in the garage and signing them up for commercials and TV shows. I wondered if those beagles were part of the reason you got into show business.

In a way, yes, because they were the stars of the family. They had agents. My first thing on TV was a show called “Burke’s Backyard” in Australia. The dogs were featured, and I’m just in the background, like a kid. I got into musicals because our dog had auditioned for “42nd Street” and didn’t get the part, and my mom really wanted to know which dog got it. So I went to see this thing called “a musical” when I was 14, and I thought, ‘Wow, that’s really cool.’ If it weren’t for the dogs, I would never have had this experience.
But there were many times in my childhood when I resented dogs, because dogs were the stars, and dogs got a lot of love and attention that I wish I had.

You also write about a strange experience that inspired you to seriously pursue an acting career, when you were living in South Africa and contracted malaria and had a vision.

It was a complete hallucination that I was an actress and had won an Oscar. It changed the entire trajectory of my life. When some people said: ‘But how did you continue?’. Or: ‘You always seemed to have this self-confidence.’ I said: ‘Because I saw it happen’.
I stuck to it despite the constant rejections and how difficult it was, starting in theater and acting when there were 10 people in the audience. But I saw that I was going to be successful. And when I came to America, I mean, the chances of making it in the entertainment industry, first in my own country, then in Hollywood — I think the chances are greater than if I were a guy and I wanted to make it to the NFL. It’s millions and millions to one, but I thought I was the right person. There are a lot of Australian actors who are much better than me and haven’t made it here.

Maybe because they didn’t have malaria.

They didn’t have the vision of malaria.

Source: Folha

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