Rebel Wilson on the sobering secrets revealed in her memoir, “Rebel Rising”

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Beneath the hallowed Hollywood sign lies a bit of Los Angeles greenery. Griffith Park is a surprisingly quiet place given the cacophony that surrounds it, although for actor Rebel Wilson, when he first moved here from Australia in 2010, the idea of ​​walking these trails seemed a little strange.

“Being quite big, I thought, who would find it enjoyable to walk uphill?” she laughed.

Actress Rebel Wilson with correspondent Lee Cowan.

CBS News


She has always owned her weight. Given the “Pitch Perfect” character that made Wilson famous, how could he not? “That was actually the one that really changed my life and actually made me a lot of money. I shouldn’t say that!” she laughed.


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It was clear that it was his talent, not his size, that ensured he was not exceptional. “Bridesmaids” was his big star. She received six movie offers within two weeks of its release. She was a confident person and those around her wanted to make sure she stayed in her lane. “My agents were against her losing weight,” she said, “because they thought, Well, you have a locker that is a very valuable locker – being the fat, funny girl – so we really don’t want you to lose it.

He made his relationship with food. and fame that is both complicated and contradictory. “People would see me as a big, confident girl who didn’t seem restricted by being a big girl,” Wilson said. “But then, what they wouldn’t see is, you know, after a movie premiere, coming home and just eating a couple of brownies and a couple of cupcakes and then a big bowl of ice cream and then feeling terrible about myself for making that”.

That’s one of the many sobering secrets Wilson is about to reveal this week in his memoir, “Rebel Rising.” “If you’re going to write a memoir, you might as well share everything,” he said.

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The book begins where she did, as a young Melanie Elizabeth Bownds, who had trouble finding friends. She writes that, when she was in elementary school, she sometimes ate lunch in the bathroom. “Yes, because she was very shy,” she said. “The thought of going out and talking to people I didn’t know was really scary. So I often sat in the bathroom with my little plastic lunch box and ate my little cheese sandwich.”

His mother was so worried that she decided to enroll Wilson in drama classes: a sure cure, or so she thought. “I was like, ‘No! That’s not me!'” Wilson said. “I hold on to the car door with my fingertips and she pulls me, pulls me away, pushes me like she’s a snowplow. I’m like, ‘No, no, no, no. I don’t do it.’ go. I’m not going!’ – And then she pushes me out the door, closes it and says, ‘I’ll be back at 5:00’ and she leaves.”

Like her short stories, her writing is frank and funny, even about the most intimate things.

Cowan asked: “You hadn’t. I guess the nicer way to put it is ‘go all the way sexually’ until you were 35.”

“That’s a good way to put it PG, Lee,” Wilson laughed. “Yes, yes. I hadn’t had sex until I was 35. And that was something I felt ashamed of; actually, I felt very ashamed of it.”

“Even though no one knew?

“Yeah, no one knew, not even the guy I slept with for the first time knew. Now he will know it. Excellent!”

That’s not to say that every memoir is a fun read, especially when it comes to one of her later roles with fellow comedian and former co-star Sacha Baron Cohen. Wilson said, “I thought he was a comedic genius. And it ended up being the worst professional experience I’ve ever had.”

While filming “The Brothers Grimsby,” released in 2016, Wilson said she felt Baron Cohen had “something against women, particularly overweight women.”

“(This) felt personal,” he wrote. “…he just wanted me to look and feel horrible.”

Wilson said: “He asked me to do things that made me feel very uncomfortable, humiliated and somewhat degraded as a human being. And yes, I had played characters before that had used my greater physicality for my own benefit. But I had agency over that character. “

Through a spokesman, Baron Cohen called Wilson’s allegations “demonstrably false.”

One of the writers and producers of “Grimsby” told “Sunday Morning”: “This doesn’t make sense… Rebel’s character was not only consistent with the way she was described in the script, which Rebel had read and approved before filming, but also had full agency in all aspects of (her character) Dawn.”

He is one of at least eight people connected to the film, so far, who have come forward to cast doubt on its claims.

However, Wilson writes that when production wrapped, “it really hit me… I felt like SBC (Sacha Baron Cohen) had sexually harassed me.”

She told Cowan: “It’s not about canceling it; it’s more about expressing my truth and what happened.”

She has felt wronged before. When Australian tabloids claimed she had repeatedly lied about her backstory, Wilson took the billion-dollar media company to court and won. She knew what she was doing: Wilson actually has a law degree from the University of New South Wales. She earned it while she was still starring in a hit Australian television series.

“I first became famous in Australia for playing a gang girl,” she said. “And then they’d see me walk into my federal constitutional law exam and they’d just say, ‘Wait, but isn’t that…?’ “It would confuse the hell out of people!”

She still surprises people. In 2022 she abandoned comedy for a dramatic role in “The Almond and the Seahorse.” The film revealed a different side of Wilson and a different outlook. She had lost up to 60 pounds in just 11 months, partly on the advice of a fertility doctor.

Yes, Wilson was ready to be a mom.

Royce Lillian Elizabeth Wilson was born through a surrogate mother in November 2022.

Royce and Rebel.

CBS News


Wilson also found the love of his life: his girlfriend Ramona Agruma. Wilson proposed last year on Valentine’s Day at Disneyland. “This whole time I thought I was looking for a Disney prince,” Wilson said. “And then I found out that maybe she was a Disney princess.”

Rebel Wilson has always pursued her dreams. What becomes pleasingly clear in his memoir is that he has, so far, managed to catch almost all of them.


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Story produced by Reid Orvedahl. Editor: Mike Levine.

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