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How Julia Roberts' Costumer Beat the Heat for 'Eat Pray Love'

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From Europe to Bali, filming Eat Pray Love was one hot job–literally! With temperatures soaring to over 100 degrees in some locations, it was no easy task keeping star Julia Roberts in costume and comfortable. “I made sure the clothes were as light as they possibly could be and still told the story,” Eat Pray Love costume designer Michael Dennison tells PEOPLE. And the scorching heat wasn’t the only issue for the skilled costumer when it came to dressing Julia. While shooting in Rome, Dennison also had to account for his leading lady’s real and perceived weight gain due to all those eating scenes. “She probably put on about seven pounds,” he admits. “I scaled down clothes and stuff like that to make them look tighter, and loosened up clothes to make it look like she was gaining more weight than she actually did.” And by the time they got to India, the progression to baggy clothing seemed natural for Julia’s character. “It was intrinsic to the Ashram that her clothes be as loose and flowy and airy as possible,” says Dennison. “It’s like a dress-code, they’re prayer clothes and also work clothes, and to be practical you [don’t] want anything close to your body. It’s too hot!” —Andrea DeSimone; with reporting by Mary Green