Anne Hathaway Admits She Almost Didn't Get 'Les Mis' Role

The actress says the filmmakers originally thought she was too young for the role, but she refused to give up

Anne Hathaway has been open about a lot of aspects of playing Fantine in Les Miserables, particularly her shorn hair and dramatic weight loss. But what she also revealed about the performance is that it nearly didn't happen.

Initially, Hathaway explained to the Hollywood Reporter, the filmmakers were looking for a slightly older actress to play the relatively brief but pivotal role in the film.

"There was resistance because I was between their ideal ages for the parts -- maybe not mature enough for Fantine but past the point where I could believably play Cosette [Fantine's daughter, played by Amanda Seyfried]," she admitted.

But the 30-year-old actress had a special passion for the role (her mother Kate McCauley Hathaway was the original Fantine in the First National Tour of the musical!), and she decided it was worth fighting for the part.

"And I did what I do when I really want a role: I got fiery and told my agent, 'Just get me in the room.'"

The result is an intensely emotional performance that is already garnering a lot of Oscar buzz, even if it took a lot of personal sacrifice for Hathaway to play the desperate single mother who turns to prostitution to keep her daughter housed and fed.

"I just had to stop eating," the newlywed said, "all for a total of 13 days' shooting."

Les Miserables, which also stars Hugh Jackman as Jean Valjean, Russell Crowe as Inspector Javert, Eddie Redmayne as Marius, and Samantha Barks as Eponine, hits theaters Dec. 25.

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