The TV host had the famous twins appear on her daytime talk show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, during which she proceeded to ask about eating disorder rumours that surrounded Mary-Kate.
As the old clip circulated online, viewers were quick to label the interview “awkward” and “problematic”, especially since the twins were only 17 at the time and Oprah boldly asked them for their clothing size on national TV.
“I know a new rumour recently surfaced has really upset you, right?” she asked the siblings. “You know, the one about eating.”
“Yeah, you know people are gonna write what they’re gonna write. We try not to read the good or the bad because it just comes with the territory,” Ashley replied.
“Either you’re too fat, too skinny and people are just gonna write what they—”
But the former Full House star couldn’t finish her sentence because Oprah interjected: “What size are you, by the way?”
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The question caught the twins off-guard, with Ashley looking visibly uncomfortable.
“Size?” Ashley said, while Mary-Kate explained they’ve always been “petite” later adding: “If we were obsessed with our size it’d be, I don’t know, a different story.”
It should also be noted that Mary-Kate checked herself into rehab later that year for a “health-related issue”.
That same year, the sisters, now 34, also starred in their last film together, New York Minute, before officially taking a step back from acting.
When the clip resurfaced, Oprah, 67, received swift backlash over her line of questioning.
“I can’t imagine being blindsided on live TV about my body size (as an adult, never mind at 17!) … That was a real s–t thing to do @Oprah,” one user tweeted, while another claimed Oprah was “disrespecting and trying to trigger” them.
The users over on TikTok were not impressed with Oprah either.
“Ashley answering for MK because she knew she was uncomfortable,” one pointed out, while another wondered, “I know we’re living in different times, but how did they think that was okay!?! [Because] they’re young?”
Anyone needing support with eating disorders or body image issues is encouraged to contact the Butterfly National Helpline on 1800 33 4673 or [email protected] For urgent support please contact Lifeline 13 11 14.
Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen through the years: 1986-2020