Katherine Heigl elaborates on why she said "Knocked Up" was sexist
Katherine Heigl got into some hot water back in 2008, right after the release of her film Knocked Up, co-starring Seth Rogen. You probably remember the movie quite well — Rogen’s character, Ben, is a reckless type that Heigl’s character, career-oriented Alison, has a one-night stand with. This leads to Alison becoming pregnant and the two of them have to figure out what their next steps will be. The film was Judd Apatow’s second big theatrical release, following The 40-Year-Old-Virgin, which came out in 2005.
But, it only took one comment for Katherine Heigl’s image to deteriorate after making the film — a comment which, even if true, sounded a little cold and unappreciative. During an interview with Vanity Fair, Heigl said the film as a whole was “a little sexist,” and went on to bash her character a bit more. In her words, the film “paints the women as shrews, as humorless and uptight, and it paints the men as lovable, goofy, fun-loving guys. It exaggerated the characters, and I had a hard time with it, on some days. I’m playing such a bitch; why is she being such a killjoy? Why is this how you’re portraying women?” she said.
While Heigl was completely entitled to these feelings, it’s usually not in the best taste to bash a film you’re trying to promote. Since then, she hasn’t worked with Apatow (who loves pulling past cast members together for new projects) or Rogen since, and admitted that she didn’t even send them a note or give them a phone call in regards to her comments.
Just recently though, Heigl felt the need to set the record straight. During an interview with Howard Stern, Heigl admitted that she may have used the wrong words to describe the film, as a whole. “I liked the movie a lot,” she said. “I just didn’t like me. She was kind of like, she was so judgmental and kind of uptight and controlling and all these things and I really went with it while we were doing it, and a lot of it, Judd allows everyone to be very free and improvise and whatever and afterwards, I was like, ‘Why is that where I went with this? What an asshole she is!’
Regarding her relationship with Rogen and Apatow, Heigl admits that she regrets not reaching out, in regards to what went down. “They were incredibly good to me on this movie, so I did not mean to shit on them at all,” she said.
This isn’t the first time that Heigl has gotten into some hot water with her co-stars — she admitted that she also felt guilty after refusing to submit herself for the 2008 Emmys, since she didn’t like her character and her performance that year on Grey’s Anatomy, realizing later that these actions might have been considered offensive to her writers. “I shouldn’t have said anything publicly, but at the time, I didn’t think anybody would notice,” she said to Howard about the incident.
So, let’s cut Heigl some slack, and forgive her for the media faux pas she made back in the day. It seems like she’s realized how her actions might have come off, and seems pretty apologetic, and a little more self aware. At least we now know that Heigl was trying to add interesting commentary regarding her Knocked Up character, and never meant to throw shade at Rogen and Apatow, who, hopefully, would be willing to cast her in a future film.