Press Release

Will Smith: Hottie or Fattie?

Washington, DC – There may be a hitch in the works for Hollywood heartthrob Will Smith. Adoring fans headed to “Hitch,” which opens this weekend and stars Smith as a superstar of romance, may not be swept off their feet once they find out the star actor is officially fat, according to federal government standards.

Based on the flawed Body Mass Index (BMI), which only takes into account height and weight, Smith is technically overweight. A BMI of 25 or more is overweight, and over 30 means you’re obese. At 6’2” and 210 lbs, Smith’s BMI of 27 makes him an “Enemy of the State.” Maybe Smith starred in “Men in Black” because the color is so slimming.

Smith is in good company with many other “overweight” and “obese” celebrities. Consider the stars of Ocean’s 11 and 12. At 5-11, 187 pounds, Matt Damon has a BMI of 26. The six-foot tall Brad Pitt carries around a positively unattractive 203 pounds, giving him a BMI of 28. But it’s George Clooney who leads the “Fat Pack” at 5’11”, 211 pounds, and a BMI of 29. Meanwhile, the “Governator” Arnold Schwarzenegger, at 6’2”, 227, is obese with a BMI of 33.

All of these celebrities, and many ordinary Americans, have fallen victim to the BMI standard, which is the basis for the government’s claim that 65% of Americans today are overweight or obese. Moreover, in 1998 the U.S. government changed the standard by which overweight is measured. As a result, over 30 million Americans were shifted from a government-approved weight to the overweight category — without gaining an ounce!

So should Will Smith have been cast as Fat Albert? Of course not. But he should watch out for surprise guest appearances by the self-described “food police” at the Center for Science in the Public Interest and trial lawyers (led by John Banzhaf) who want “fat taxes” and restaurant lawsuits to force them and all of us to slim down.

“To include Will Smith in the number of overweight Americans further inflates already overblown statistics behind the so-called obesity epidemic,” said Dan Mindus, senior analyst of The Center for Consumer Freedom. “If Will Smith is fat, then I’m the Fresh Prince of Bel Air.”

Does the government think you’re fat? Take the test at Plug in your height and weight to get an instant verdict on how the government stacks you up against Smith and many other Hollywood stars.

Founded in 1996, the Center for Consumer Freedom is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization devoted to promoting personal responsibility and protecting consumer choices. For more information, visit


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