Renee Zellweger

Renée Zellweger is back—in the sequel Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason! When we first met the insecure, yet adorable, Bridget Jones, women everywhere stood up and cheered. Droves of single women could relate to Bridget Jones' never-ending search for Mr. Right. From trying to lose weight to working her way up the career ladder to discovering her boyfriend's cheating ways, it seems Bridget could not catch a break.

Oprah: Did you know that [Bridget] was going to become this cultural icon?

Renée: I had no idea. I just didn't want [author] Helen Fielding to be mad at me...I didn't want her to be disappointed and feel like I had ruined her character in some way.
Renee Zellweger and Oprah

To get into character, Renée made drastic changes. As she did for the first Bridget Jones, Renée added 30 pounds and four dress sizes to her petite frame! For nine months she avoided the gym and ate under the guidance of a nutritionist.

"It's very carefully laid out," Renée says of the plan to gain weight. "It's a plan to implement where we need to go. It's math: If you want to look like this, then you have to eat this much each day until that date...And it sounds so exciting but it's really not. It's really boring. There's no time for [pizza]. You're doing rehearsals and you have dialect class three times take day. And then [there's] a fitting and then you have to go and learn your lines. So you're at work and the food gets shuffled in and you switch the pen for the fork for a second while you're going over whatever it is you're trying to learn. It's just something you're not so conscious of. It's not like, 'All right. Here's the good part of the day where you go get the sundae or whatever.' It's just part of the work."
Renee Zellweger

Renée earned a Golden Globe for her dazzling performance in Chicago. She's been nominated three times in a row for an Oscar®, and this year she won as best supporting actress in Cold Mountain. Renée's also currently starring as the voice of Angie in Shark Tale, an animated comedy also starring Will Smith.

Oprah: What's the biggest impact fame has had on you?

Renée: Oh, that's really hard to say...because it's not something that I feel until I'm outside of my house and away from my closest friends, where it's put onto you...I think the strangest the not really [being able] to meet people anymore.

Oprah: So paparazzi are always after you, and I hear you have rules for how you act in public?

Renée: Oh, well, they're just things that after a while you stop noticing you're doing. I have the "don't scratch" rule. I don't want to scratch in public...And who you hug. You have to be cautious. You don't want to eat while standing on the curb. Just don't do it. Don't eat. Apples, ice cream, you know.
Hugh Grant

Hugh Grant, who plays Daniel Cleaver in Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, says, jokingly, he enjoyed the aftermath of his role in Bridget Jones's Diary.

"It did a lot of good for me personally, actually," Hugh says. "A whole slew of women who used to despise me for being a sort of Mr. Goody-Two-Shoes suddenly looked at me with new eyes. Previous to that my fan base had been over-50s. Then, after Daniel, a few younger women were prepared to like me. I quite like him for that reason."

Hugh also joked about his feelings about having children. "I think with the right-sized children in the right clothes by my side...I think I'd look great."

But seriously: "I do quite like that idea. I have a lot of 'lost soul' friends whose souls were saved by having children. They suddenly got nicer and, you know, actually wanted to live for another 30 years."
Renee Zellweger, Hugh Grant and Oprah

Like Renée, Hugh has dealt with the issues of fame for years. Even though they both say they have issues with the paparazzi invading their private lives, unlike Renée, Hugh professes his impatience with them.

"I've seen her with the paparazzi and she handles it pretty well," Hugh says of Renée. "I'm just awful. I want to kick them. I do kick them. I find if you smile until you're within minimum focal distance for their lens, then they can't get the picture and that's when you kick 'em as hard as you can."
Colin Firth

One of the most famous lines in Bridget Jones's Diary comes from Colin Firth's character, Mark Darcy. He tells Renée's Bridget, "I love you just the way you are." Colin says audience reactions to this line's simple grace caught him off guard.

"It amazes me the impact that line has because I would have thought it's a fairly obvious thing you would say to a partner," he says. "It seems incredible how much hunger for that sort of affirmation there is out there, really. I know a lot of people who say, 'It goes without saying...' And that's when you get the cry of protest. 'No, you have to say it.'"

Colin also says that shooting a sequel of such a beloved movie was a startling experience. "When we first got together and were shooting in the street, it was a bizarre experience to be dressed as a character that everybody knew," he says. "I'd seen the first film only once and there were people who showed up on the street to watch who had probably seen it two or three or more times. Other people owned these characters in their minds and cherished them. You really don't want to mess with that."
FROM: The Stars of Bridget Jones
Published on October 22, 2004


Next Story