Kate Beckinsale’s Most Embarrassing Movie Is On Prime Video And It’s Awful

By Charlene Badasie | Updated


Tiptoes, starring Kate Beckinsale, Matthew McConaughey, Gary Oldman, and Patricia Arquette, is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video. Released in 2003, the movie, written and directed by Matthew Bright, revolves around a love triangle involving two brothers, one of whom is a dwarf. Though it wasn’t its intention, the film became infamous for its insensitivity toward people with dwarfism.

Billed as a dramatic comedy, Tiptoes revolves around a couple, Steven (Matthew McConaughey) and Carol (Kate Beckinsale), who are deeply in love and engaged to be married. Steven comes from a family of dwarfs, and his twin brother, Rolfe (Gary Oldman), is also a dwarf. However, he has managed to hide his family’s condition from Carol, fearing that it might affect their relationship.

The controversial movie, Tiptoes, starring Kate Beckinsale, is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.

When Carol becomes pregnant, Steven realizes he needs to confront his family’s genetic condition and tell her the truth. The couple travels to Steven’s hometown to meet his eccentric and dysfunctional family, including his brother Rolfe, his mother, Kathleen (Debbie Lee Carrington), and his father, Bruno (Peter Dinklage).

Tiptoes explores themes of acceptance, prejudice, and the meaning of family

During the visit, Carol and Steven are confronted with the reality that their baby may be born with dwarfism, which scares Steven as he does not want his child to face the same challenges as Rolfe. This fear causes a growing rift between the couple, leading Carol (Kate Beckinsale) to seek guidance from Rolfe in understanding the experiences of living with dwarfism.

As Steven comes to terms with his identity and tries to fix his broken relationship with Carol (Kate Beckinsale), Tiptoes explores themes of acceptance, prejudice, and the meaning of family. The movie also challenges societal norms regarding physical appearance and disability. However, while its intentions were pure, the film did not go over well with viewers.

One of the notorious aspects of Tiptoes was casting Gary Oldman as Rolfe instead of an actor with dwarfism. Instead, the Academy Award winner was “shrunk” for the role through the use of prosthetic limbs and forced perspective shots. This controversial decision was heavily criticized, as many felt it was inappropriate to cast a non-dwarf actor in a role.

Kate Beckinsale and Gary Oldman in Tiptoes

The Kate Beckinsale movie initially premiered as a 150-minute director’s cut at the Butt-Numb-A-Thon film festival hosted by Harry Knowles. However, the director, Matthew Bright, was dismissed from the project during the post-production phase. Consequently, his screenwriting credit was removed, and the film was re-edited without his involvement.

Gary Oldman was “shrunk” for the role through the use of prosthetic limbs and forced perspective shots; this controversial decision was heavily criticized.

The revised version, a 90-minute producers’ cut, was screened at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival. During the festival, Bright openly criticized Tiptoes and the producers for the changes made in the editing process. The producers’ cut also received predominantly negative reviews, with some critics even labeling it as one of the worst movies ever made.

Tiptoes behind-the-scenes Issues

Interestingly, Matthew Bright came up with the idea for Tiptoes when he was 18 years old, envisioning it as a provocative comedy centered around intimate relationships among individuals with dwarfism. After three decades, Bright’s stepfather shared a copy of the script with John Langley, the creator of the television show Cops, who expressed interest in producing the film.

Kate Beckinsale agreed to star in the movie for minimal pay on the condition that she could wear her “lucky hat” throughout the filming process. Bright accepted this request. However, on Beckinsale’s first day of shooting, the producers insisted that Bright tell the actress to remove the hat. Bright refused since Beckinsale agreed to participate in the film for a reduced salary on the sole reason that she was allowed to wear the hat.

Patricia Arquette and Peter Dinklage in Tiptoes

Tensions and disagreements between Bright and the producers continued throughout the filming process. After he was fired from the movie, Bright sought to erase his name from the film. While he succeeded in removing his screenwriting credit, which was replaced with the pseudonym Bill Weiner, he could not remove his directing credit since he was not a member of the Director’s Guild.

However, Peter Dinklage spoke warmly about the film, describing the director’s cut of Tiptoes as visually stunning. He was also critical of the producer’s cut, calling it nothing more than a “rom-com with dwarfs.” In later years, Bright has expressed his hope that his director’s cut, starring Kate Beckinsale, would be released on the day.

Although the movie was marred by controversy, it remains a notable entry in Kate Beckinsale’s filmography, showcasing her willingness to take on unconventional projects. So it’s not surprising that the film has found a home on n Amazon Prime Video.