19 Actors Who Should Win An Award For Pretending They Weren't Pregnant On Screen
Next time someone holds a purse in front of their stomach, I'm going to be looking a little closer.
While childbirth may be the miracle of life, it can also be an inconvenience to Hollywood. Luckily, through camera techniques, wardrobe hacks, and on-the-nose plot restructuring, actors are sometimes able to do their jobs onscreen while also being pregnant.
Here are some instances of famous people hiding their pregnancies onscreen:
Blake Lively in
Toward the end of filming
The Shallows, Blake got pregnant with her second child. The film rarely used a stunt double, so her belly was concealed by a surfboard or by being submerged underwater.
Kerry Washington in
Emily Blunt in
Into the Woods
Walt Disney Studios
pregnancy was hidden behind trees, by the raised apron on her dress, and sometimes by James Corden himself!
Also Emily Blunt in
The Girl on the Train
Emily was pregnant with her second child while filming
The Girl on the Train. She said that this pregnancy made her really tired, which actually helped her play up her character in the film.
Lisa Kudrow in
Lisa became pregnant while filming Season 4 of
Friends, so instead of hiding it, they made Lisa's character, Phoebe, be the surrogate mother for her brother, Frank, and his wife, Alice.
Courteney Cox in
The same couldn't be done for Courteney's character in
Friends. There was a storyline in the series where Monica found out she could not get pregnant, so when Courteney got pregnant during the final season, they hid her belly under baggy clothes.
Alyson Hannigan in
How I Met Your Mother
The creators of
HIMYM disguised Alyson's real baby as a food baby by having her character, Lily, enter a hot dog–eating contest.
Gal Gadot in
Warner Bros. Pictures
Gal had to do reshoots for
Wonder Woman while 5 months pregnant. Because her costume was very formfitting, the special effects team placed green fabric over her belly so they could CGI-out her baby bump.
Ellen Pompeo on
Ellen was pregnant during Season 6 of
Grey's. Aside from there being only closeups of the actor, the writers also wrote in a storyline where Meredith donated part of her liver to her father so that Ellen could have some bed rest/take maternity leave.
Julia Roberts in
Julia was pregnant while filming the second installation of the
Ocean's series of movies, so instead of hiding it, the writers — with Julia's approval — got meta and had Julia's character in the movie pretend she was a pregnant Julia Roberts IRL to aide in their heist.
Sarah Jessica Parker in
Sex and the City
SJP was pregnant during Season 5 of
SATC — which is why the season was both delayed and shortened. The writers didn't want to write her pregnancy into the series because they felt it was inauthentic for her character, so they hid her in baggy designer garbs.
January Jones in
During Season 5, the writers wrote in Betty Draper's
weight-gain storyline — which required her to wear a fat suit and prosthetics — to account for January Jones' IRL weight gain from her pregnancy.
Amy Poehler in
Parks and Recreation
Amy was pregnant during Season 1 AND toward the end of Season 2, which was why
production and scheduling were so wonky during the first few years of the show.
Debra Messing in
Will & Grace
Debra was pregnant during Season 6 of the show. While the crew tried to hide her belly behind hand towels and tables, Debra inevitably had to be
written out of the last few episodes of the season.
Kelly Rutherford in
Kate Winslet in
Kate's character, Jeanine, was rarely seen without her
iPad or folder, which helped conceal Kate's IRL pregnancy.
Reese Witherspoon in
Mindy Kaling in
The Mindy Project
Salvador Perez, the costume designer, and Michael Spiller, the cinematographer, worked together
to hide Mindy's pregnant belly with different outfits and camera angles. The audience had no idea that Mindy was 7 months along during the final season of The Mindy Project.
And Halle Berry in
X-Men: Days of Future Past
20th Century Fox
Director Bryan Singer squeezed all of Halle's scenes into the
first few weeks of filming before she was unable to fit into her Storm costume. Also, Storm's stunts were a bit tamer in this film than in the others. BuzzFeed Daily
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