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Angelina Jolie was exploited this week by HollywoodLife, which published a number of stories about her weight. Gossip Cop can expose what went down: The site went from accusing the Oscar winner of being anorexic to purporting to have "details on how the actress [is] tired of people slamming her trim frame."

On Wednesday, Star falsely announced on its cover that Jolie is "76 lbs. and anorexic." The tabloid sold its narrative with what appeared to be a doctored image that was photoshopped to make the actress look sickly. The story alleged Jolie is "literally" falling apart and "dying" amid her custody battle with Brad Pitt. "She's practically living on ice cubes, and she's so anorexic her skin is sagging and her bones are almost breaking," a supposed insider was quoted as saying. Of course, recent photos of Jolie show she is actually looking the same as she has for years.

Gossip Cop debunked the cover story within hours of it hitting newsstands, with one of Jolie's confidantes telling us that these claims about Jolie starving to death are a part of "a bizarre story that keeps popping up" and are completely "untrue." But instead of rightly busting the distorted tale as Gossip Cop did, HollywoodLife opted to regurgitate the false contentions as if they were true. "Angelina Jolie Reportedly Drops To 76 Lbs. After Brad Pitt Split: 'She's On The Verge Of Collapse,'" the blog announced in a headline. The website quoted from the tabloid article at length, including the comment about Jolie being "so anorexic," and asked, "Is she going to be okay?"

The outlet also editorialized, "If she truly is as scary skinny as the source said, we hope she starts taking better care of herself... The last thing anyone wants is for the mother of six to have a health scare due to her dropping weight." Then on Thursday, HollywoodLife offered a related story titled, "Is Angelina Jolie's '76 Lb.' Body Putting Her Life At Risk? Why She Needs To Put On Weight." In this piece, the online publication wondered, "Should we be worried for her health?"

To answer that question, the site looked to a nutritionist who has never met Jolie but nonetheless felt qualified to express "concerns" about the movie star. This "expert" went on to offer unsolicited advice, saying that Jolie needs to "build some cushion," and added, "I would ask her if she has the energy to live the life she wants. And is she reducing modifiable risk factors that could cause illness and death?" Then on Friday, the blog peddled an "exclusive" in which it yet again repeated the claim that Jolie is "down to a shocking 76 pounds," but also purported to have learned that she really "knows her health is just fine."

"When people are attacking her over her weight it is very hard not to take it personally, it hurts," a so-called "source" was quoted as saying. This tipster supposedly asserted, "It upsetting [sic] when people body shame her and make assumptions about her health when they have no idea what her health is like. She swears she feels fine and that there's no reason to worry about her." The "source" even added, "She does wish people could practice more kindness and be less judgmental."

Of course, it's quite ironic and hypocritical for HollywoodLife to be quoting someone lambasting the judgment Jolie faces for her appearance when the website was guilty of just participating in such body shaming her. Apparently the outlet lacks self-awareness. Gossip Cop also questions whether it actually lacks a "source." After all, if the publication really had access to someone in Jolie's world, why didn't it present such a narrative from the get-go? The site first spread claims about Jolie being anorexic and then asked someone who has never met her about the state of her health, only to then assert that "there's no reason to worry" and that Jolie actually finds such speculation "upsetting."

If HollywoodLife was really connected to Jolie's inner circle, it could've investigated the Star cover story from the start and learned, as Gossip Cop did, that it was a sensational fabrication. Instead, the blog opted to exploit Jolie and her health, and "make assumptions about her health when they have no idea what her health is like," with three separate stories over three days. As we routinely point out, the website often likes to capitalize on tabloid stories, regardless of whether or not they're accurate or ethical, but this case is particularly shameful.

(HL)

Our Verdict

Gossip Cop has determined this story is accurate to the best of our ability.

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