Why Jennifer Hudson Turned Down 'Precious' Role

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After winning an Academy Award for her role as Effie in 2006's Dreamgirls, Jennifer Hudson says she was asked to audition for the lead in Precious -- but turned it down because it required her to pack on pounds.

“I had done that with Effie ... and as much as I was moved by this film, I wanted to try a role that had nothing whatsoever to do with my weight," Hudson wrote in her new book I Got This: How I Changed My Ways and Lost What Weighed Me Down (via Uptown magazine).

PHOTO: Jennifer Hudson's New Chicago Digs

Hudson's rejection put Precious director Lee Daniels in a tough position.

"We were weeks away from the shoot but I still hadn't found Precious," he told The Guardian at the time. "Do you know how difficult it is to find a 300 pound black girl to be great in a movie? They don't exist in Hollywood."

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Enter Gabourey Sidibe. The Tower Heist star immersed herself in the role of the overweight, pregnant teenager in the 2009 drama, resulting in an Oscar nomination; Hudson, who won Best Supporting Actress in 2007, has since acted in the Sex and the City films, continued her career as a singer and lost more than 80 pounds as a Weight Watchers spokeswoman.

In September, Hudson opened a weight-loss center in her native Chicago; her new memoir, I Got This, arrives Jan. 10 and tells the story of the actress-singer's weight struggles and adoption of a healthier lifestyle. The book is published by Dutton, a Penguin Group imprint.

 

 

 

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