Beyoncé said ‘Austin Powers’ poster made her look too skinny

Beyoncé wasn’t happy with her appearance on the original Austin Powers in Goldmember movie poster.

According to Vulture’s recent retrospective of the cult classic, which turns 20 this summer, the actress and singer expressed concern on set that early marketing materials for the project made her appear unrealistically thin. In the third installment of the Austin Powers franchise, a young Beyoncé played the chic FBI agent and nightclub singer Foxxy Cleopatra, a Pam Grier-esque character modeled after divas of the blaxploitation film genre.

“When we were shooting someone brought it [Beyoncé] a poster that would promote the film,” makeup artist Kate Biscoe recalled of the piece.

“He showed her, like, ‘Do you like it?’ And she kind of said, ‘Yeah.’ He says, “What’s up?” And she says, “You made me too skinny. I am not.’ Then she made this hourglass shape. And he said, ‘Okay, we’re going to fix that.'”

When the “Say My Name” hitmaker was out of earshot, Biscoe inquired, “‘Is this the first time an actress has asked to make her body bigger?’ He said, ‘Yes. It’s going to cost me thousands of dollars, but I’m going to do it.’”

While preparing to star in Goldmember, Beyoncé “put herself on “a really tough physical regimen and diet” of 1,200 calories a day, according to producer John Lyons.

“You and [her parents] Matthew and Tina were keenly aware of the expectations that both the music business and Hollywood often have of what young, beautiful women should look like and were wise to implement those ideas,” said Lyons Vulture.

By the time Goldmember was filmed, Beyoncé had established himself as the breakout star of girl group Destiny’s Child and was ready to pursue a solo career by the time the pop trio released their final album. (Her song on the Goldmember soundtrack, “Work It Out,” technically counts as her first solo single, a year before “Crazy in Love” topped the music charts.)

At the time, the multihyphenate entertainer still went by her full name, Beyoncé Knowles, and had only appeared in one other film.

“We knew we were looking for a young black actress,” said Lyons. “I was originally a casting director and have always loved scouting musicians for roles, and I remember Sharon Sheinwold Jackson, the agent, telling me that the lead singer on Destiny’s Child was very special.”

By all accounts contained in the Vulture article, Beyoncé was a consummate pro on the set of Austin Powers, albeit a little nervous.

“She turned into this incredible light,” said hair department head Candy Walken while filming her musical number for the film. “She was 19 years old and she was doing this stage so well the moment she walked on it. Neither of us really knew why they chose her for this character, and then we understood.”

Vulture’s oral history of Beyoncé’s role in “Austin Powers” comes weeks after the release of single “Break My Soul,” from the singer’s forthcoming seventh studio album. The artist’s latest album, Renaissance, is out on July 29th.

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/movies/story/2022-07-18/beyonce-austin-powers-movie-poster-mike-myers Beyoncé said ‘Austin Powers’ poster made her look too skinny

Sarah Ridley

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