Tragic Details About Anne Hathaway

This article contains mentions of addiction, eating disorders, and depression.

Anne Hathaway has had quite the Hollywood career ever since breaking into the business as a teen to play a real-life Disney princess. You could say many fans grew up with Hathaway, thanks to her role in 2001's "The Princess Diaries" and later 2007's "The Devil Wears Prada," which made her the movie star she is today. Over the past two decades, her career has continued to evolve with roles that have ranged anywhere from a drug addict, to a secret agent, to even a witch.

Despite Hathaway's obvious talents as an actor and her starring roles in several fan-favorite films, the "Havoc" star has been put through the ringer when it comes to the public's perception of her, even once being referred to as "Hollywood's most polarizing star" by Salon. Fans, bloggers, and the media seemingly found it fair game to take shots at her off-screen personality, all because of how she accepted an Oscar in 2013.

What's worse is that Hathaway had already struggled with her own insecurities over the years, not to mention humiliating and very public moments that could have derailed her career. The "Ella Enchanted" actor explained to Elle, "I'm aware of how unusual it is to be in my position, and I don't just mean being an actress. I mean the amount of years that I've been doing this, the things I've been through." Hathaway has somehow managed to come out on the other side, but she had to overcome a lot to get there.

Anne Hathaway dealt with depression as a teen

While Anne Hathaway's role in "The Princess Diaries" may have made her seem like the ultimate teen queen to fans, her real life at the time was apparently far from a fairytale. People reports that during her adolescence, Hathaway suffered from depression and anxiety, but wasn't willing to take medication to treat it. She may have regretted that decision though, since she later reflected to Tatler (via People) that when it came to her old self, "I am sorry she was hurting for so long."

It appears Hathaway dealt with a lot of internal struggles growing up. She revealed on ABC News' "Popcorn with Peter Travers," "I disliked myself so intensely. ... It was just a mindset. I didn't know how to love myself, which meant I didn't know how to love anybody." Even after landing acting roles in her late teens, Hathaway confessed on People's "The Jess Cagle Interview" show that she still had "feelings of inadequacy, insecurity, and nervousness and anxiety."

These days, Hathaway has seemingly found happiness within herself, partially thanks to her family. She gushed to Peter Travers, "I feel really lucky — I get to do what I love. ... I'm with the right guy, and we make each other happy... And we have been given the most beautiful gift of our son." Yet because of her past, she admitted, "It just seemed like it could never happen to me. I had just too many issues." 

If you or someone you know is struggling with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.

The Les Misérables star was fat-shamed

Anne Hathaway has dealt with people commenting on her weight for a long time. "The Dark Knight Rises" star told Allure it started when she was 16, recalling, "It was 'Congratulations, you have the part...don't gain weight.' Which of course means you need to lose weight." As her career progressed, Hathaway eventually turned to unhealthy ways to stay thin. 

Speaking with Jess Cagle for People in 2019, she recalled awards season a decade earlier, sharing that she "barely ate anything" over the holidays and thought "movie stars had [to have] a certain body. I was just smoking my nerves away and I just wasn't nourishing myself," she said. Hathaway also told Cagle that the weight loss for her role in "Les Misérables" "was not a long-term good thing for my health. It took a really long time to come back from it. ... I'd lost a lot of weight in about two weeks."

Her unhealthy dieting was presumably encouraged by the fat-shaming she says she experienced "all the time," explaining on "Today" that insults would sometimes be "overt," or they'd be "micro." Hathaway has since changed the way she approaches her body and the haters. In 2018, she posted on Instagram, "I am gaining weight for a movie role. ... To all the people who are going to fat shame me in the upcoming months, it's not me, it's you."

If you are struggling with an eating disorder, or know someone who is, help is available. Visit the National Eating Disorders Association website or contact NEDA's Live Helpline at 1-800-931-2237. You can also receive 24/7 Crisis Support via text (send NEDA to 741-741).

Anne Hathaway's ex was a con-man

Before Anne Hathaway found her happily-ever-after with her husband Adam Shulman, the "Rachel Getting Married" star was in a serious relationship with Italian real estate developer Raffaello Follieri. According to Vanity Fair, Hathaway met Follieri through a mutual friend in 2004, confessing that "it was totally love at first sight." It seemed that Follieri was her perfect man, considering that she gushed to Harpers Bazaar, "My boyfriend is incredible in a lot of ways," adding specifically that, "when it comes to his charity... One of the most untouted aphrodisiacs in the world is charity work."

However, Hathaway apparently learned the hard way that Follieri wasn't who she thought he was. In 2008, he was arrested for fraud, money laundering, and conspiracy. Hathaway promptly dumped him, explaining to W magazine, "The rug was pulled out from under me all of a sudden." She recalled, "As soon as I found out about the arrest, I had to get on a plane to Mexico to do a press tour for 'Get Smart.' And then I spent a week in shock at a friend's house." 

Even after the split and his conviction, Follieri continued to humiliate Hathaway by telling the Daily Mail that she ditched him in his time of need. He claimed, "Annie's last words were 'I love you forever'... I was arrested. I never spoke to Annie again." He added, "She decided saving her career was most important." In 2019, Follieri told Radar he was considering writing a tell-all, dishing, "I know the public is looking for a more detailed story."

Her Oscar win sidelined her career

It's safe to say that the early 2000s were good to Anne Hathaway, thanks to a string of high-profile movie roles in "Brokeback Mountain," "The Devil Wears Prada," and other projects. Yet, things took a major turn in 2013 after she accepted an Academy Award for her role in "Les Misérables." According to the New York Post, her "stiff, prepared-sounding speech," and "awkwardly nipple-centric" and "ill-fitting" gown resulted in people lambasting Hathaway for apparently trying too hard.

Things got so bad that major publications like The New York Times and Salon covered how fans turned on Hathaway, and the term "Hathahate" was coined. Howard Stern addressed it on his show, saying, via The Hollywood Reporter, "Everyone sort of hates Anne Hathaway... She's just so affected [and] actress-y that even when she wins an award... it all seems so scripted and acted." A blogger for Crushable took it further, writing, via Salon, "I feel like she's not a real person. ... I find it annoying."

The shade almost ruined Hathaway's career, but she continued to work and defend herself. The star explained to Harpers Bazaar that after playing Fantine in "Les Misérables," she "was still identifying with being a victim." Hathaway reiterated to The Guardian, "I kind of lost my mind doing that movie," noting that in terms of her Oscars speech, "I had to stand up in front of people and feel something I don't feel which is uncomplicated happiness... I tried to pretend that I was happy and I got called out on it, big time."

The Interstellar actor was cyberbullied

Once the "Hathahate" started, it seemed Anne Hathaway couldn't go online without facing cyberbullying. The "Ocean's Eight" star recalled on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" that she had been googling stuff with friends when "the story came up. The title of it was 'Why Does Everybody Hate Anne Hathaway?'" That experience hurt Hathaway, and it took a lot for her to overcome the feeling that what the trolls were saying was true. She explained, "I listened at first. I couldn't help it...and then I realized why I couldn't." She continued, "If you don't love yourself when someone else says horrible things to you, a part of you is always going to believe them."

Hathaway also owned up to some of the criticism, telling Harpers Bazaar that she messed up when accepting the Oscar for best film that "Les Misérables" won. She admitted that "it was rude" for her to speak before her collaborators took the stage with her.

Yet she apparently was no longer going to put up with rudeness, either. She told a writer at Jezebel that she stopped reading their website, "Because I would just be reading about something totally unrelated to me and [see] a headline about me and how much your site dislikes me." She also called them out for bringing up the "Hathahate" in their interview, saying, "I think it's weird that it continues to be talked about," adding, "I am ready for the conversation to move to a place beyond it."

Anne Hathaway had problems with hangovers

Anne Hathaway has expressed her discomfort with heavy alcohol intake while parenting, so much so that she decided to pause her drinking. She said on "Popcorn with Peter Travers," "It's never gotten in the way of me being able to do work, but I think it was approaching an unhealthy level." "The Intern" star recalled when it first started becoming an issue, saying, "I went to college and I drank a great deal. ... By the time of 'Devil Wears Prada,' I was drinking more."

By January 2019, Hathaway revealed to Ellen, "I quit drinking back in October ... For 18 years." She explained, "I'm gonna stop drinking while my son's living in my house just because I don't totally love the way I do it." She later told Tatler about a particular incident that led to the change — a five-day hangover after a day-to-night period of social drinking. "I will never be that person who can nurse a glass of wine throughout an entire evening," the star explained.

Hathaway did clarify to Boston Common, "I didn't put [a drink] down because my drinking was a problem; I put it down because the way I drink leads me to have hangovers." Yet she doesn't intend to stay sober forever, sharing that she plans to resume drinking once she's an empty-nester.

If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

The mom-of-two had infertility issues

Anne Hathaway had a hard time trying to conceive her second child. Because of that, once she did get pregnant, she used her announcement to let those who may be struggling with infertility know that they're not alone. The "Interstellar" star captioned an Instagram photo of her baby bump, "...for everyone going through infertility and conception hell, please know it was not a straight line to either of my pregnancies."

Hathaway later admitted to the Daily Mail, "Each time I was trying to get pregnant and it wasn't going my way, someone else would manage to conceive." She couldn't stand how others approached her about it. "What I hated was when people would say: 'What's taking you so long?' Or they'd try to put a pretty bow on what was happening to me." She continued, "I would just think... 'I'm fairly devastated right now, so whatever you say, I'm still going to feel that way.'"

The "Serenity" actor explained that was why she shared her struggles with fans. She was embarrassed by her feelings, but the reactions from other women helped her the most. Hathaway told the Daily Mail, "When I said to them: 'This has happened to me, it broke my heart, it broke me,' so many of them said: 'It happened to me, too,' and that was the thing that allowed me to come through it, to feel my pain without having anyone rush in to define it or cure it."

The Princess Diaries star struggled with self-worth

Anne Hathaway has come a long way on her journey to finding self-acceptance, but it took awhile for her to get there, especially since she seemingly used to be her own worst critic. As "The Witches" star admitted to Jess Cagle for People, she eventually realized she needed to "say thank you to taking care of myself, by not apologizing for occupying space, which is not something I knew how to do 10 years ago."

Hathaway credits her husband, Adam Shulman, for helping shift her perceptive. She gushed to Elle, "He changed my ability to be in the world comfortably," even adding, "His unique and specific love has changed me." She also uses coping mechanisms to process the negativity she used to internalize. She dished to Town & Country that she writes her worries down on paper then sets it on fire, explaining, "All of this energy, this angst, this rage — everything is smoke."

Additionally, Hathaway is more careful with how she portrays herself so that she doesn't have to deal with more criticism. She told Elle, "Now I watch my words. It's just, what's the worst thing that could happen? Probably already happened." And when it comes to Hathaway's path to finding self-worth, she confessed to Cagle, "It's been a journey. I don't look that different, but I just feel like the inside has just transformed so much."

Co-hosting the Oscars damaged her reputation

You could say that the 2011 Academy Awards weren't just a blow to Anne Hathaway's thriving career, but the event almost cost her a friendship. The "Becoming Jane" star co-hosted that year's show alongside "Pineapple Express" actor James Franco for what was supposed to be a young, fresh take on the Oscars. It was a major bust, with Hathaway admitting to The Hollywood Reporter that she came across as "manic and 'hyper-cheerleadery,'" and with Franco accused of being stoned. Vanity Fair even described it "as one of the cringiest nights in Oscar history."

Franco defended himself on "The Late Show with David Letterman" by dragging his co-host, claiming, "The Tasmanian Devil would look stoned standing next to Anne Hathaway." Hathaway called him out though, telling Harpers Bazaar, "I let James know that a whirling dervish is a more flattering comparison than a Tasmanian devil." Franco later told Howard Stern (via The Hollywood Reporter) that he and his friend had made amends, despite those "nasty" critics.

Though Hathaway managed to rebound from the ordeal, she regretted not going with her "first instinct." She told Jess Cagle on his People interview show, "I turned that gig down, and James is the one that convinced me to do it. ... When all the dust settled, I was just like, you've gotta be kidding me." Hathaway did, however, point out to Harpers Bazaar, "In the grand scheme of things, I got to have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," once again proving that despite what she's been through, she can still find a bright side.