How Julia Roberts' Costumer Beat the Heat for 'Eat Pray Love'

08/13/2010 at 05:00 PM ET


From Europe to Bali, filming Eat Pray Love was one hot job–literally! With temperatures soaring to over 100 degrees in some locations, it was no easy task keeping star Julia Roberts in costume and comfortable. “I made sure the clothes were as light as they possibly could be and still told the story,” Eat Pray Love costume designer Michael Dennison tells PEOPLE. And the scorching heat wasn’t the only issue for the skilled costumer when it came to dressing Julia. While shooting in Rome, Dennison also had to account for his leading lady’s real and perceived weight gain due to all those eating scenes. “She probably put on about seven pounds,” he admits. “I scaled down clothes and stuff like that to make them look tighter, and loosened up clothes to make it look like she was gaining more weight than she actually did.” And by the time they got to India, the progression to baggy clothing seemed natural for Julia’s character. “It was intrinsic to the Ashram that her clothes be as loose and flowy and airy as possible,” says Dennison. “It’s like a dress-code, they’re prayer clothes and also work clothes, and to be practical you [don’t] want anything close to your body. It’s too hot!” —Andrea DeSimone; with reporting by Mary Green

FILED UNDER: Julia Roberts , Movie Style
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Kim on

I loved both the book and the movie. Julia Roberts did an excellent job playing Liz Gilbert.

Karen Leuthaus on

What I loved about the character of this movie was her strength to live her life in the moment. Wouldn’t we all want something to marvel at?
The beauty of going to the movies is to live vicariously through the character. I found myself tearing up a few times because even though I did not have those life experiences, I felt her pain.
So I say to all of you find the essence of your very being, we may not all be able to travel the world but find the time to accomplish something on your weekends or your days off enjoy your life. Like someone once said you will not be remembered by how many hours you were at work or how much money you have in your bank account but by your kindness,compassion and what you bring to others.

denise bruner on

Found the movie to be boring also i should have read the book now i am not as interested the clothes were great though and she looked great in them.

Debbie on

I enjoyed the movie, I didn’t love it, but I’m glad I saw it. I would never have picked India as place to find myself, but this isn’t my story. I left the movie feeling as if I learned something about myself and that’s always rewarding.

monica on

I enjoyed the book “Eat, Love, Pray”, the movie a little different than book. was tired of Julia’s scowl during movie, enjoyed “Richard from Texas” RIP, and Javier Bardem, both men I thought were smoldering hot, and intense and charismatic actors

Wow! on

Wow! I cannot believe there is such negativity surrounding this wonderful profound movie! Everything about it is amazing especially the message! Oh and by the way I send all of you negative Nancy’s light and love and for those of us who are inspired by this well acted well made well messaged movies will continue to live in light and love……

Lorna on

I enjoyed Eat Pray Love. It was refreshing to sit in a movie that was about life. Plain and simple. We could all benefit in slowing down and taking a look at life. Breathtaking settings. Slow pace is not always bad.
Julia Roberts did a great job in her role. She has shines in simplicity.

sandy on

The clothes in “Eat, Prey, Love” were fantastic. Wonder where they can be purchased?

Me on

I think if you don’t understand what she is going through and you have never experienced that level of heartbreak or disconnect, you won’t get the movie. It’s meant for those who are going through it, or know what she’s feeling. If you are in that place or have been in that place, it’s heartfelt and can really reach you on an intimate level. I went with a friend who has never felt that way, and she didn’t get it. I, on the other hand, bawled and totally understood what she was going through. Go in with an open mind and heart. Try to feel what she’s feeling and you will have a better experience.

Allison on

Lori (comment from August 14th) is an uneducated moron. She obviously does not know about the rich histories and cultures within India. It’s the oldest civilization in the world and I’m sure many people don’t know that.

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