It was 2012 when the movie “Pitch Perfect” hit theaters and everyone was introduced to the sweet voices and quirky personalities of the all-female a cappella group, the Barden Bellas — which included the hilarious Rebel Wilson as Fat Amy. Speaking to Vanity Fair about Fat Amy’s impact on pop culture throughout the three “Pitch Perfect” films, Wilson said, “I love playing her so much. I love who she is and what she represents. She’s so confident and she’s so comfortable in her own skin. She’s really fun to play because she’s very similar to me!” Similar to the character Fat Amy, audiences have continually found Wilson to be equally likable and charming.
Known for her comedic chops, Rebel Wilson grew up in Australia and studied acting at the Australian Theatre for Young People. She got her start there on such comedy shows, like “World Record Pizza” and “The Wedge,” but she really caught North American audiences for the first time with her role as Brynn in 2011’s “Bridesmaids,” as one of Kristen Wiig’s wonderfully weird roommates. However, comedy wasn’t the naturally funny actor’s plan from the start. As she told Vogue, “I always thought it’d be a dramatic actress.”
To learn even more about Rebel Wilson’s life and career, keep reading.
How Rebel Wilson picked up an American accent
Rebel Wilson figured out how to do an American accent completely by accident — or due to personal trauma, depending on how you look at it.
In 2012, the Sydney-born actor spoke to the Los Angeles Times about how she had such severe “social anxiety” and was “painfully shy” as a teenager that her mother got “tired of her daughter’s isolated behavior” and “dragged her to an acting class” and forced her to see things through on her own. “It was so embarrassing,” Wilson recalled. “I’m there. My face is red from crying. My mom has left. I’m stuck for the next 90 minutes. The teacher came up and asked me my name, and I said, ‘Hi, I’m Rebel,’ in an American accent. It was the only way I could deal with this traumatic situation. I became a character instantly. And then I just started making stuff up.” Talk about stumbling upon your craft.
During an appearance on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” Wilson said that doing an American accent can be difficult because she finds that “when [she’s] talking Australian [she doesn’t] actually use much of her face muscles,” but when doing an American accent, it changes as “[it takes] a lot more face muscles” to really intonate a proper American accent. Who knew?
Why Rebel Wilson kicked off a 'year of health'
Throughout 2020 and 2021, Rebel Wilson has documented what she calls her “year of health” on Instagram.
On a November 2020 episode of the “The Drew Barrymore Show,” Wilson talked about the changes she’s made in her personal life. “I was going all around the world, jet-setting everywhere and eating a ton of sugar,” she said. “And I tried, like so many women out there, little fads of diets and things before and I’m like, I need to do a really holistic approach this time. … I think what I mainly suffer from is emotional eating and dealing with the stress of becoming famous internationally.” She went on to tell Barrymore that she’s “lost around 40 lbs.” so far but still hopes to maintain her “curves.” Wilson also said that she “was working on the mental side of things” as well as “the nutritional side.”
During an interview on Australia’s “The Morning Crew with Hughesy, Ed and Erin,” Wilson spoke about self-esteem and how people might view or perceive her since she’s lost weight. “It wasn’t like I wasn’t confident and now I’m just super confident,” she said. “I think it’s really interesting to see how other people treat you. Sometimes being bigger, people didn’t necessarily look twice at you, and then now that I’m in good shape, people offer to carry my groceries to the car and hold doors open for you.”
Rebel Wilson has been open about struggles with fertility
Sometimes it can be a bit difficult to relate to the lives of Hollywood actors because their lives can seem so glamorous, but it can be a really moving thing when a celebrity lets their guard down and shows their more vulnerable side. Actor Rebel Wilson did just that when she opened up about the hardships she has experienced with fertility.
In May of 2021, Wilson took to her Instagram page to share some “bad news” with her followers. “To all the women out there struggling with fertility, I feel ya,” she wrote. “The universe works in mysterious ways and sometimes it all doesn’t make sense… but I hope there’s light about to shine through all the dark clouds.” She later posted an update to the same post to say thanks to everyone who reached out to her through “kind messages” and showed support as it “made [her] feel a lot better.”
When Wilson appeared on the “Kyle and Jackie O Show” in 2019, she spoke about visiting a fertility clinic to have her eggs frozen. She called it a “backup plan” and said that busy “career women now have options … I think a lot of women, especially in their thirties or if they can in their forties should think about doing it.”
Rebel Wilson, professional dog shower?
Many people in show business hail from famous families where acting or singing is basically in their blood. Such wasn’t the case for actor Rebel Wilson.
Speaking to LRM Online about how her family was into “dog showing” when she was growing up, Wilson said, “We had beagles. I was a junior handler which is kind of like ‘Toddlers and Tiaras’ but with dogs. You’re dressed up in little outfits and you run around with the dogs, showing off the dogs. … [You] have to get up really early, bring all the dogs, all the equipment and go to the dog show. That’s why I love watching ‘Toddlers and Tiaras’ because that was kind of like my life but with dogs.” More like paw-ddlers and treat-aras, right?
When she dropped by “The Kelly Clarkson Show” to promote her hosting gig on ABC’s professional dog-grooming show “Pooch Perfect,” she talked about her family’s time in the world of showing dogs. She not only told Clarkson it was kind of “traumatic” for her when she was younger because she’s actually allergic to canines, but added that her “mom was devastated when [she] didn’t continue the family legacy of being a dog-shower.” It feels safe to say Wilson’s decision to pursue a different industry worked out for her.
Rebel Wilson released her own clothing line
Like many stars out there who parlay their success and celebrity status into other avenues, Rebel Wilson dropped a clothing line in 2017.
According to InStyle, after Wilson did a collaboration with Torrid in 2015, she launched “a more ambitious collection called Rebel Wilson x Angels,” which was sold in department stores. “I love creating something from nothing,” she told the outlet, before adding, “I never thought as a teenager that I’d someday have a fashion line.” Speaking with Cosmopolitan about her line, she said, “The plus-size market is really underserved and I know there are women out there [who] are looking for the types of clothes I wear all the time.” She also noted that she’s “learned a lot” from “top Hollywood stylists” over the years.
Forbes reported Rebel Wilson x Angels was “created in partnership with Mamiye Brothers, an American manufacturer and distributor of women’s and kid’s apparel,” which included “a range [of] denim pieces, graphic tees, bomber and varsity jackets and form-hugging dresses.” Speaking with the publication about how her personal style influenced the line, she said, “I’m definitely more youthful than other plus-size brands. … On the red carpet, I like to wear body-con dresses that really show the silhouette of my figure.”
The Kardashian-Jenners vs. Rebel Wilson
Maybe don’t expect to catch Rebel Wilson trying to keep up with the Kardashian-Jenners. When asked about the reality TV family on “The Kyle and Jackie O Show” in 2015, the “Pitch Perfect” actor said, “You always see those girls out and … I’m like, so different to them. I don’t really care about looks or that kind of thing. And they’re all about that. I try to develop my skills as a writer, as an actor, as a producer.” Well, then.
Wilson did not set those feelings aside when she was asked to present at the MTV Video Music Awards with Kylie and Kendall Jenner — a request she declined. She told Kyle and Jackie O, “It’s not that you hate any of them individually, but it’s just that everything they stand for is against everything I stand for. And they’re not famous for talent. I worked really hard to get where I’ve gotten to.” She also took a swipe at one of Kylie and Kendall’s older sisters: “I mean how Kim Kardashian got famous from the sex tape and I just went to acting school and worked really hard.”
Rather than let a feud boil over, Wilson eventually told her Twitter followers that she “sent [the Kardashian-Jenner family] flowers” and was “MORE than over this little thing.” However, that tweet arrived just minutes after she accused the family’s publicist of launching a “smear campaign” against her.
Rebel Wilson once asked out Justin Bieber
The world got a front seat view of Rebel Wilson and her then-boyfriend Jacob Busch in 2020 thanks to her Instagram page; the actor was not shy about posting photos of the two before confirming their breakup in early 2021. But what about other Hollywood celebs who might have caught her eye over the years? Well, let’s see.
In 2016, Wilson took to Instagram to post a photo of a scrap piece of paper that she and friend Kelly Osbourne used to pass along to singer Justin Bieber to jokingly ask him out. The caption reads, “This is HOW to pick up Justin Bieber at the J Lo concert with @kellyosbourne X.” So, how would one go about requesting the company of one of the biggest pop stars on the planet? “Dear Justin,” the note begins. “My name is Kelly Osbourne [and] my name is Rebel Wilson. We think you should take our sexy hot asses out after the show (nothing weird),” followed by a checkbox for yes or no — which someone had checked “yes” on! The utter boldness combined with the silliness of passing an actual note at a concert is pretty charming.
According to the Daily Mail, this all went down at the kickoff event for Jennifer Lopez’s Las Vegas residency in 2016. The two even scored an Instagram selfie with the singer after their flirty little exchange. Well played, ladies.
The charitable side of Rebel Wilson
Rebel Wilson’s successful film career has brought in a nice pile of change. Thanks to hits like the “Pitch Perfect” franchise and “The Hustle,” Celebrity Net Worth has her net worth listed at $22 million. And part of that fortune has gone to good causes.
When Wilson appeared on “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire – Celebrity Edition” in January 2021, she pledged to give her winnings to The School Of St Jude, a charity “whose mission … is to educate disadvantaged, bright students from the Arusha District to become moral and intellectual leaders in their country,” according to the school’s website. The site also notes that Wilson’s connection to the school began when she “[sponsored] an academic scholarship for Winnie, one of the school’s first students,” who has since graduated.
During her appearance on “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire,” Wilson made it up to the $250,000 question and decided to go for it. She told host Jimmy Kimmel that she would “take the gamble knowing that [she] could personally donate to the charity if [she was] wrong” — which would have been $93,000! She ultimately answered the question correctly and gave one quarter of a million dollars for The School of St Jude. Too cool.
Try to picture Bridesmaids without Rebel Wilson
Who can remember the first time that they saw the movie “Bridesmaids” and took in the comedic bliss that is Rebel Wilson as Kristen Wiig’s character’s intrusive and hilarious roommate Brynn? Yeah, it was pretty hard to forget — in the best way possible.
What if you were told that Rebel Wilson’s role actually wasn’t even written into the original script? Hard to believe, but it’s true. When Wilson appeared on SiriusXM’s “The Jess Cagle Show” in March 2021, she said, “I’d auditioned for Melissa McCarthy’s character and was the second choice for that role. And I guess they liked my audition and added me into the film, essentially, so there was never supposed to be two roommates, only one. So I just kind of added myself in a way to the scenes.” What a turn of events.
“Bridesmaids” celebrated its 10-year anniversary since its release in early May of 2021 and according to People, Wilson took to her Instagram Stories to share a photo of a commemorative class ring sent to her by director Paul Feig. Let’s all thank the movie gods for allowing everything to perfectly align for Rebel Wilson to appear in “Bridesmaids,” because it surely wouldn’t have been the same without her.
Rebel Wilson's Pitch Perfect gals are still besties
The amount of chemistry that exists between Rebel Wilson and the rest of the Barden Bellas in the “Pitch Perfect” films is arguably more impressive than the franchise’s success. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the stars of the beloved flicks — one of which had the biggest opening ever for a movie musical, according to Entertainment Weekly — became actual friends behind the scenes. Raise a cup to that.
While promoting “Pitch Perfect 3” on “The Today Show,” Wilson reminisced about how the cast had formed such a strong bond throughout the years that it was difficult in parts to film the last movie. “In the finale [of the film], we sing George Michael’s ‘Freedom’ and it was the last day of filming altogether and because we don’t know whether we will be back again, they’re actually real genuine tears we’re crying in those scenes,” she said. “It was really emotional. We just cried for like a whole day. We genuinely do love each other.”
All these years later, and the cast still hangs out together. In 2020, Wilson shared a photo of the “Pitch Perfect” crew at a get-together thrown by co-star Anna Camp. Wilson wrote, “We don’t even need a theme party … we all just naturally rock out. Thanks @therealannacamp and your gorgeous abs for having us.” Barden Bell-aw.
Rebel Wilson wanted to be a tennis pro growing up
Comedian Rebel Wilson is a human of many talents and as it happens, one of those talents happens to involve the game of tennis.
In February of 2021, Wilson took to her Instagram to post a photo from her teen years that shows her breaking a sweat on the tennis court while taking a swing at a ball. “I don’t know whether you guys know but one of my original career choices was to be a professional tennis player,” she shared. “I ended up being way too short (and also not good enough) but geeesh I used to love being a beast on the court!”
In a 2014 interview with Outside the Ball, Wilson talked about getting ready for a game of tennis versus getting ready to take on an acting role. “For a tennis match, sometimes the preparation is a bit different because sometimes I like to play hard,” she shared. “Like, really go for it and I don’t want to not be able to walk the next day. So, I do stretching.” Very important. She also said she would be all for partnering up with Venus or Serena Williams for a match.
Needless to say, we would love to see Rebel Wilson play some tennis with the Williams sisters.
Laying down the law with Rebel Wilson
In addition to being a force of nature in the comedy world and on the tennis court, Rebel Wilson happens to know a thing or two about litigation. So much so, that she earned a Bachelor of Laws degree.
When Wilson made an appearance on the “Aussies In Hollywood” podcast, she discussed how she studied law at the University of New South Wales during the day and then pursued acting classes in the evening. “Nobody thought it would work out for me as an actor … people thought I was crazy doing acting classes,” she said. “They were like, ‘Rebel you’d be a great lawyer, you’d smash it’. So I always had the back up plan of being a lawyer, but in my heart I did want to be an actor.” And thank goodness she followed her heart.
When she dropped by “The Late Late Show with James Corden” in 2019, Wilson talked about balancing an acting career with school. “It took me so long to get into law school, you have to study really hard,” she said. “I was like, I may as well finish, even though I was already kind of famous.” Case closed.
Rebel Wilson was once kidnapped
Rebel Wilson has a real-life story that sounds like a scene straight out of a movie — the scary kind.
When Wilson made an appearance on the show “Straight Talking,” she was asked to speak about the most terrifying thing she’s ever experienced. “There was one time in Africa where I got kidnapped,” she shared, before going on to explain that she was in rural Mozambique with a group of female friends when they were suddenly stopped and ordered to get out of their vehicle. “We were on this cattle truck and these men came on another truck with a lot of guns … [and] were like, ‘you’ve got to get off your truck,'” she remembered. “They took us to this house in the middle of nowhere.”
Wilson said she was impressed with the way she handled the situation. “I feel like I was very good in the crisis,” she said, noting that she took on the role of “team leader” for that frightful experience. They were all let go the next morning and no one was hurt.
Taylor Swift's cats are a lot like Rebel Wilson's Cats character
It was late 2019 when Tom Hooper’s “Cats” arrived in movie theaters, a star-studded adaptation of the musical featuring Rebel Wilson, Judi Dench, Taylor Swift, Idris Elba and Jennifer Hudson. So, when it was met with abysmal reviews and an even worse time at the box office: As Variety reported, the studio braced itself to be up to $100 million in the hole after the flick’s debut.
With that said, the stars seemed excited to promote the film at its premiere and even talked about where they took inspiration from in order to pull off their best feline-inspired behaviors. When Wilson’s “Cats” co-star Taylor Swift spoke to People at the event, she said her cats may have helped to inspire Wilson’s portrayal of the “lethargic Jennyanydots.”
“I knew early on they’re not the kind of cats I was gonna be channeling because the kind of cat I’m channeling is very athletic and sort of wild, and my cats are beautifully round,” Swift explained. “They’re fuzzy. They look like little lazy bears. They’re always taking naps. They’re not the kind of cat that I’m playing. I think my cats would’ve been a perfect cat for Jennyanydots.”
Wilson told reporters that her character was “really fun” and helped to “bring the comedy to the film.” Alas, the comedy didn’t help make it a smash. Can’t win ’em all.
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