Chrissy Metz has become a breakout star this year thanks to her starring stint on the hit NBC drama, This is Us. Many fans have related to her character’s weight loss struggles and self-esteem issues. But now, the actress is facing her first taste of backlash after revealing that she agreed to lose weight as part of her contract. In an interview with TV Line, Metz revealed that she is contractually obligated to lose weight for her role as Kate Pearson, but that she doesn’t see it as selling out.
“In our contract, it did state that that would be a part of it, to lose the weight in the trajectory of the character as she comes to find herself,” Chrissy told TV Line. “That was a win-win for me.”
Chrissy Metz says her motive for shedding the pounds is completely health-related.
“I just have to be very clear, whether or not I lose weight or stay the same, it’s purely a choice of mine for health,” Chrissy explained.
“Not because I think that plus size, curvy, voluptuous, big bodies aren’t attractive — because I think they’re awesome and sexy. So I’ll just have to make sure that’s known, because I’m not selling out the big girls. I don’t do that. That’s not me.”
Still, while Chrissy Metz has made her stance on the subject clear, some commenters on the TV Line article were outraged. One reader slammed Chrissy’s contract deal as “fat shaming from the NBC corporate fatcats.” Another compared Metz to Mike and Molly star Melissa McCarthy, whose CBS sitcom was canceled after she lost weight, while another slammed NBC’s mandatory weight loss clause and compared the situation to Donald Trump being called Hitler for “enforcing the rules on a Miss Universe contestant who gained 70 pounds.”
“I feel very mixed on her being contractually obligated to lose weight,” another fan wrote.
And another This Is Us viewer slammed Chrissy Metz’ guise that she’s doing it for her health.
“I have no problem with her getting essentially paid to work out, but the idea that she’s doing it to lose weight to fit into the idea of what ‘health’ looks like is problematic.”
Chrissy Metz’ This is Us storyline has focused on her character’s body image issues, with many of her scenes taking place at Overeaters Anonymous sessions. Viewers were even privy to Kate Pearson’s disappointing weigh-in, which showed she lost paltry one-and-a-quarter pounds after starving herself and exercising like a fiend. The character’s low point came when she devoured a package of powdered donuts in a gas station parking lot.
In an interview with She Knows, Chrissy Metz defended her character’s storyline and revealed that it is a personal one for This Is Us creator Dan Fogelman.
“You know, it’s really hard for me because I have friends who are like, ‘Why do we have to talk about the weight? Why can’t you just be an actor who happens to be overweight in the show and you’re moving on with your life?’ and I completely understand that,” Chrissy revealed.
“This role is written about a woman who — it was loosely based on Dan Fogelman’s sister — who struggled with her weight and her self-worth. And a lot of people do, and I have myself, as a human being. So this is a story that needs to be told because there are people who find their self-worth in the number on the scale.”
Still, while some fans can relate to Kate’s struggles, others have been complaining about her character’s storyline ever since the show premiered earlier this fall. And now, news of Chrissy Metz’ weight loss contract has rubbed some fans the wrong way.
While the storyline is getting mixed reviews, Chrissy Metz told TV Line that This Is Us writers will focus on other aspects of her character’s life in upcoming episodes.
“I’m just rolling with the punches,” Metz said. “I, as Chrissy, want to do things that mentally, emotionally, and physically make me the best that I can be. That’s the intention for our writers and the development of the character.”
Take a look at the video below to see Chrissy Metz on This Is Us.
[Featured Image by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images]