Why Julia Hated Julie

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If you find blogger Julie Powell (played by Amy Adams) just a little annoying in Julia & Julia, Nora Ephron manages to sneak in one unexpected bit of gratification: so did Julia Child! Indeed, the scene where Powell finds out that Child doesn't approve of her blog is such an out-of-nowhere shock (and one that's never quite resolved) that it leaves audiences wondering where exactly Child's displeasure came from.

Writer Russ Parsons, who introduced Child to Powell's blog years ago, elaborated further on Child's reaction in today's LAT:

When I found "The Julie/Julia Project" online, I was fascinated by it. [...] Of course, I was also interested in what Julia might think about it. So I printed out the whole thing and took it up to her. She hadn't heard about it, but promised to have a look and get back to me.

I didn't hear from her for several days, so eventually I called her up. "So Julia," I asked, "what do you think?"

There was a silence as she gathered her thoughts. Then in that familiar reedy voice she nailed the answer: "Well," she said, "she just doesn't seem very serious, does she?

"I worked very hard on that book. I tested and retested those recipes for eight years so that everybody could cook them. And many, many people have. I don't understand how she could have problems with them. She just must not be much of a cook."

You got off easy, Julie. Not a "bloggerviper" to be found!

· Julie, Julia and me: Now it can be told [LAT]



Comments

  • icallthebigonebitey says:

    Everytime I start to get mad at Julia Child for being cunty and homophobic, I just remember what she looked like. All her life.
    Then I think about tripping her and what a loud sound that would make. That usually does the trick.

  • Lowbrow says:

    If imitation is the highest form of flattery, Julia Child had a strange way of showing her gratitude. I guess having to go through life resembling a transgendered linebacker may have skewed her self-esteem.

  • alexarch says:

    An old person does not appreciate a blogger? The devil, you say.

  • JohnD says:

    Julia Child was an old woman and a product of another time. For grown adults to joke about her looks after her death is weird.

  • Smack says:

    Have you guys even read Julie Powell's blog? The thing is, I completely understand what Julia was talking about since the blog is barely even about the food. She seems scatterbrained and worthless, and what I really wanted to read was how everything tasted and looked and was. Which she failed at.
    I'm on team Julia, in re: Julie Powell. The gays, not so much.

  • Old No.7 says:

    What Russ Parsons fails to mention, is that Powell is none too fond of Child's blogsite, Chicks With Dicks.

  • icallthebigonebitey says:

    a) she wasn't always an old woman
    b) there is never an excuse for prejudice

  • anonymous says:

    Since when was Julia Child a homophobe?

  • choward says:

    I grew up watching Julia Child's cooking show as a child. Not by choice but because my mother was watching it and I can honestly say that I put my barbie dolls down and actually watched her. She was warm and funny and not easy to ignore. I saw the movie and wished that they had forgotten about Julie Powell and just stuck to Julia. Her life and her relationship with her husband and relationship with food was interesting and endearing.
    Have you read Julie's blog. It is boring and insipid and she did basically steal someone else's hard work and dedication to get her 15 minutes of fame. We wont be hearing from her any time soon but we will all remember Julia Child. And why are any of you elevating Julie Powell to Judy Garland status?

  • Sierra says:

    I was dissapointed with the ending of the movie, though the film was good throughout. I actually liked the character Amy Adams played better that Streep's character. (I think if anyone else was working that hard and then dropped their work on the floor, they'd cry too!) I can see why Julia would have been a little uncomfortable about Julie's blog but I think she also should have been honored that someone loved her work so much.

  • Anjelica says:

    Look, here's the deal:
    Maybe YOU think that Julie Powell was "boring and insipid" but she wasn't expecting to have her 15 minutes of fame, she just wanted to write a blog, and you know what blogs are usually about? THOUGHTS. Even though the blog was a challenge to her culinary skills, that wasn't the only reason that Julie published her blog. Maybe she just wanted a creative outlet to store her thoughts.

  • Marlee says:

    I think all of you are just a little too serious. You've missed the point!
    Julia Child = Splendid
    Cooking with Love for food = Superb
    Anyone who loves both = Brilliant

  • Darlene says:

    I've not read Julie's blog or book, but just watched the movie. Her idea to dedicate a year to going through the entire book and blogging on her adventures is clever and creative. Who cares if she didn't allocate more time toward describing a dish flavor, etc. She's not a critic or claims any professional stature on the subject. If anything...maybe her project encourages others to do the same and blog on their perspective of the adventure!? Regardless, sometimes creative concepts merit greater exposure with a book compiling the numerous stories of the adventure. She was lucky and that successful book converted to a movie. Julia Child earned her own success just as Julie Powell has the right to earn her own as well.
    Something I think many people are missing, including the late Julia Child is this...We all know Mrs. Child developed a detailed book to teach American women the basics of French kitchen cuisine and the very basics of cooking as well...all this for women who (as said in the movie) do not have servants or personal chefs to cook for them. What made Mrs. Child's book such a historical success were average-day women LIKE JULIE POWELL doing the very thing Mrs. Child intended when pursuing the development of her book. What I don't understand is Julie Powell being degraded for simply trying to do what Mrs. Child intended with her publishing such a book! Did Mrs. Child actually think every woman who purchased/obtained her book had great skill or aptitude in the kitchen? I'd surely presume she was naive for a 91yo woman if that were true! Granted, women were in a quite different situation decades ago and possibly had more time on their hands to hone their skills in the kitchen, but times have changed and women these days shouldn't be mocked or disregarded if they choose to attempt a similar adventure as Julie Powell's...even if fumbling along the way, clumsy or not and even if the instructions were spelled out crystal clear. Everyone has their shortcomings and struggles regardless of the hobby/profession/adventure. I think its wonderful Julie Powell chose to follow through with the project and I think its wonderful how her life has changed because of her determination. Kudos to her!!! We could all learn from her experience regardless of the hobby medium.

  • Jenny says:

    I've just watched the movie for the second time. I thought it was lovely.
    Julia Child may have missed the point...This is a woman with a full time job cooking these things at night after she's returned from oftentimes grueling work. I can totally relate. For Mrs.Child, cooking was her job.
    Sometimes I'm lucky if I can make a grilled cheese after a long day's work. Our generation of women are lucky that the expectations upon our mothers, grandmothers have not been put upon us in quite the same way.

  • Priya says:

    Darlene, how beautifully put! I really appreciate your thoughts on this and i totally agree! They were both special and had individual tallents and hardships that they faced. We could all learn something important from both of them.. :)

  • Lacey says:

    i agree, it is very disrepectful as well as rude.

  • Jennifer says:

    For the people at the beginning who were bashing Julia Child (for her LOOKS, worst of all, easy freaking target)- shame on you. You are the products of a time when it's hammered into you from a very young age to be tolerant of other people who are different. At the time during which she was growing up, people were NOT raised this way, had no conception of it, and by the time she was an old lady, she had formed her habits and couldn't change. I work in assisted living with the elderly- there's a reason they say "you can't teach an old dog new tricks". Shame on you for thinking you somehow have the right to sit in judgement of people who came from such a different background.
    You want to see "tolerance" and and absence of prejudice? Go to ANY other country in the world with people who look different than you do, and see how much you really fit in. Oh, they'll be polite, they might even like you, but see you as the same as they are? Never.
    Get a job and buy a clue, you idealistic, self-righteous, naive idiots.

  • mary smith says:

    June 2011
    I have watched the movie several times, and I understand entirely why "Julia Child" did NOT want to meet. Put yourself in her place...personal journey, in which it took her "Julia Child" to write and re-write recipes, and not only that, but, look at the courage, and the optimism that she held on to, during the years of struggle to complete this triumph. Then, it should be perfectly clear…and, no need to wonder why…”JULIA CHILD" did NOT want to meet.
    Let us search our souls, and think about how one would have actually felt if they had walked in “Julia Child” journey to moment in "Time" when, "JUlIA CHILD" “Master the Art of French Cooking” and ask, “How would YOU feel if you were “Julia Child”?
    "Julia Child" is an ICON and nothing less. All Julie Powell did was cook and BLOG from “Julia Child’s” "Master the Art of French Cooking"
    What's more, actually, anyone could do what Julie Powell did. Julie Powell got “LUCKY” and “Hollywood came knocking, for the love of ‘MONEY’. Furthermore, all it took was an idea, and start Blogging.
    It should be perfectly “clear” why "Julia Child" did NOT want to meet. 6/2011.

  • Gross says:

    I hated "Julie & Julia" simply for all the eating noises. Gawd, the gross, slurpy mouth noises!

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