Last night, Julianne Hough attended the U.S. premiere of Bigger in Las Vegas. The dancer and actress plays the role of Betty Weider, pinup girl turned fitness icon, in the new movie. Today, the star posted a tribute to Weider on her Instagram profile.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Bigger tells the story of the rise of Ben and Joe Weider, who were the pioneers of the contemporary fitness industry and gym movement. The Weider brothers fought against discrimination, anti-Semitism, and poverty, while becoming champions for many causes including women’s rights and sexual freedom. They also started the annual Mr. Olympia bodybuilding competition that continues to this day, which propelled the career of a young Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Betty Weider is a legend in her own right as well. She was the second wife to Joe Weider, and was an iconic pinup model prior to her marriage. She helped co-found the International Federation of Bodybuilders and Shape Magazine, and also co-authored books on bodybuilding.
Hough took to Instagram on Friday to share her respect and admiration for Betty Weider. She posted a photo of herself on premiere night wearing a pink sleeveless dress, complimented by pink lips and her blond locks slicked back into a bun.
View this post on Instagram
I was so honored to play Betty Weider in the film #BIGGER, which tells the true story of how the Weider’s not only impacted the health and fitness world, but changed it for generations to come! Their vision was so ahead of their time and they were one of the first voices to support living a healthy lifestyle. I can’t wait for you all to see it :) In theaters October 12th! Styling @anitapatrickson Make up @mollyrstern Hair @jill901
The photo received over 20,000 likes in two hours, with fans expressing their support for Hough and her new role. One fan had the opportunity to see the movie ahead of its October 12 release and wrote, “I had the privilege of seeing it ahead of time and it was fabulous just like YOU! You portrayed Betty perfectly! I loved it!”
ET previously reported that Hough feels a special connection with Betty Weider and a deep respect for her accomplishments, and was excited to take on the role.
“What I’m really passionate about with Betty is that back in the 50s, 60s, and 70s, she was such a strong woman, surrounded by men. And for her to be able to have a voice, even though she was sort of looked at as a trophy, or this beautiful person in a magazine, she was so much more than that.”
The movie includes a cast of famous bodybuilders, as well as renowned actors including Tyler Hoechlin, Steve Guttenberg, and Kevin Durand.