Aside from being immensely talented and charitable, Kate Beckinsale is often regarded as one of Hollywood's most beautiful stars.

Still, a director once claimed he cast Beckinsale in his film because she wasn't "too beautiful." Huh!?

During an appearance on The Graham Norton Show in 2016, the British actress revealed that Pearl Harbor director Michael Bay used to criticize her looks.

"When we were promoting the film, Michael was asked why he had chosen Ben [Affleck] and Josh [Hartnett], and he said, 'I have worked with Ben before and I love him, and Josh is so manly and a wonderful actor.' Then when he was asked about me, he'd say, ‘Kate wasn't so attractive that she would alienate the female audience,'" Beckinsale revealed, according to Vanity Fair.

"He kept saying it everywhere we went, and we went to a lot of places," she added.

Talk about a backhanded compliment...

Kevin Winter, Getty Images
Kevin Winter, Getty Images

Bay did, in fact, double down on this extremely cringe thought process in an interview with Movieline in 2001.

"I didn't want someone who was too beautiful. Women feel disturbed when they see someone's too pretty. I'm not saying Kate's not pretty. . .[she] is very funny, could hang with the guys. She's not so neurotic about everything, like some actresses," Bay told the publication after singing the praises of Beckinsale's Pearl Harbor co-stars Ben Affleck and Josh Hartnett.

He also took a dig at another iconic British actress at the same time, claiming, "When you look at Titanic, Kate Winslet is pretty, but not overwhelmingly beautiful. That makes it work better for women." (Major eye roll.)

READ MORE: Kate Beckinsale Rushes to Hospital Straight From Golden Globes

As if those comments weren't wild enough, Bay also told Beckinsale she needed to work out after she had just given birth to her daughter.

"I'd just had my daughter and had lost weight, but was told that if I got the part, I'd have to work out. And I just didn't understand why a 1940s nurse would do that," Beckinsale said.

"I don't think I fit the type of actress Michael Bay had met before. I think he was baffled by me because my boobs weren't bigger than my head and I wasn't blonde," the Serendipity star recalled on The Graham Norton Show.

Chris Weeks, Getty Images
Chris Weeks, Getty Images

Thankfully, Beckinsale was able to lean on her co-star Affleck during the film's production.

"I’d never seen a movie on that scale before and I really wasn’t prepared for it. There were four units going at once, there was diet plans and exercise regimens that [were] really punishing. But I was so lucky because Ben had had a lot of experience in that department. He’d go, ‘Don’t worry, they’ve got me on the same diet,'" Beckinsale said, according to The Things.

In 2016, Bay responded to Beckinsale's Graham Norton Show interview and defended his words.

"Yesterday I read in the press that I don’t think Kate Beckinsale is ‘a stunning beauty,’ huh? And they went on to suggest that Kate and I don’t like each other? Well, totally untrue. Kate and I are friendly. She is a fantastic actress, very funny, witty lady, sassy, speaks her mind, and I truly respect her. That’s why she has come to so many of my Christmas parties and Birthday parties," the director said, according to IndieWire.

However, Beckinsale isn't the only actress who has criticized Bay's alleged misogynistic behavior on set.

In a 2009 interview with Wonderland, Fox called out Bay's directing style during her time in the Transformers films, which apparently consisted of him telling her to simply "be hot."

"'Mike,' I’ll say, 'Who am I talking to? Where am I supposed to be looking at?' And he responds, 'Just be sexy.” I get mad when people talk to me like that," Fox said.

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