Big Brother and The Talk host Julie Chen revealed a secret from her past on The Talk today. All this week, the women on The Talk are revealing secrets. Sharon Osborne revealed her fling with Jay Leno on Monday. Yesterday, Aisha Tyler revealed that she was giving up on trying to start a family after a major infertility struggle. Today, Julie Chen was up.
She grew up in Queens and worked in smaller areas as a reporter on her quest to hit the big time. In 1995, as a reporter in Dayton, Ohio, she asked her boss if she could fill-in for vacationing anchors to get some experience behind the anchor desk. She was refused. Her boss told her, “Let’s face it, Julie, how relatable are you to our community? How big of an Asian community do we really have here in Dayton? Our audience can’t relate to you because you are not like them.” He also said, “on top of that, because of your heritage, because of your Asian eyes, sometimes when you are on camera and you are interviewing someone, you look disinterested. You look bored because your eyes are so heavy, they are so small.”
She was devastated and met with agents. Many who told her the same thing! One big time agent said if she wanted to succeed, and she could because of her talent, she would need to get plastic surgery. She reached out to her parents who offered to pay for the surgery if she really felt she needed it. Others in her family threatened to disown her if she did it. In the end. She got the surgery, and her career soared. The before and after pictures are quite amazing.
The entire time she was telling her story, I kept hoping that she opted not to get the surgery and that the moral of the story was that hard work and talent got her to network tv. Nope.
It did get me thinking. There may have been a time in my life when I would have shunned someone from getting plastic surgery. But. We only have one life, and if we aren’t comfortable in the skin we were given, and there are options to feel more comfortable, it is nice to have those options. I would just hope that work on one’s inner self would be done before altering the outer. We live in a world where the outer will always be judged more than the inner. There are lots of people that don’t judge just the outer, but there will always be a great number of people who only judge on the outer.
I understand why Julie got plastic surgery. Her job is ON-CAMERA and it is part of her job to look a certain way. Her ambition was to be a great TELEVISION reporter. She may have been able to have a lucrative career as a newspaper or radio reporter, but that wasn’t what she wanted.
I shed a tear a couple months ago when Dustin Hoffman came to a sad realization while making his blockbuster hit, Tootsie. He was brought in to hair and make up to get transformed into a woman. He didn’t like what he saw. He said, “No. Please do it again.” They told him, “Sorry, this is what you look like as a woman, this is as good as it gets.” It dawned on him that, as a woman, he wouldn’t get a second glance on the street. Then, a light bulb went off. He realized that he’s passed so many interesting women up because of their appearance. There are so many wonderful people that don’t get to meet others because they are judged only on their outward appearance. I found it to be quite an insight. He said the experience of making Tootsie was actually sad.
What do YOU think. Do you think Julie made the right decision? What have you done for your career? Tweet me! http://www.twitter.com/stltaylorj