Renée Zellweger Opened Up About "Painful" Criticism Of Her Appearance

Renée was cruelly mocked after a public appearance in 2014.

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Remember in 2014, when Renée Zellweger faced a barrage of vicious scrutiny concerning her appearance after being photographed at the Elle Women in Hollywood Awards? Yeah, it turns out having a million people on the internet speculating about your face and what surgeries you might have undergone really, really sucks. Shocking! Speaking to Vulture,Renée said the "international humiliation" she experienced led her to see a therapist, who diagnosed her with depression. "When you learn that your skin is not quite as thick as you need it to be, what is that gonna feel like? Well, now I know. I got the hardest kick. And it ain’t the end," she said.

Renée is currently promoting Judy, her biopic about Judy Garland, and she further discussed her comments in Vulture during a SiriusXM Town Hall Special, as Entertainment Weekly reports. When host Jess Cagle expressed surprise that she was so deeply affected by the criticism of her looks, she responded, "I think you’d kind of have to be dead not to."

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It gets worse: Renée went on to tell an upsetting story about overhearing a cruel conversation about herself while taking the Tube in London. "They were talking about Hollywood and they were talking about how Hollywood ladies are so silly—and especially that Renée Zellweger," she said.

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"'And how could she do that? Why would she go and have surgery on her face like we wouldn’t know? How could she do that? She doesn’t look like herself, and you can’t just do that, where you go and you just don’t look like yourself because we expect you to look like yourself,'" Renée recalled the strangers saying.

There was a slightly satisfying ending to the story: The man criticizing her suddenly realized who, exactly, had overheard. "The man is still talking about how stupid I am and he looked up and he said, 'Oh God, you’re not, you are, you’re oh my God, but you look just like yourself,'" she said.

"And I thought, 'Yeah, it’s funny how that works isn’t it?' And he said, 'Wow, oh, well you know Hugh Grant.' And I said, 'I do know Hugh Grant, he’s a great guy. I’ll tell him you said hello.'" It's clear Renée has a pretty excellent sense of humor about it all—but it's still seriously upsetting just what she was subjected to.

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Emily Dixon
Morning Editor

Emily Dixon is a British journalist who’s contributed to CNN, Teen Vogue, Time, Glamour, The Guardian, Wonderland, The Big Roundtable, Bust, and more, on everything from mental health to fashion to political activism to feminist zine collectives. She’s also a committed Beyoncé, Kacey Musgraves, and Tracee Ellis Ross fan, an enthusiastic but terrible ballet dancer, and a proud Geordie lass.