'Gilbert Grape' mom loses 250 pounds

Darlene Cates in a scene from What's Eating Gilbert Grape.

Darlene Cates in a scene from What's Eating Gilbert Grape.

WENN.COM

, Last Updated: 6:15 PM ET

The overweight actress who portrayed Leonardo DiCaprio and Johnny Depp's morbidly obese mother in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape has lost close to 250 pounds (113 kilograms) after a series of near-death health issues.

Darlene Cates weighed in at 575 pounds when she portrayed bedridden Bonnie Grape in the 1993 movie, but she has shed almost half her bulk in a bid to avoid death and return to acting.

The Dallas Morning News reports the 64-year-old has overcome diabetes and has started physical therapy, but she is still unable to walk and has had four surgeries to aid her weightloss in recent years.

Cates is now determined to lose another 100 pounds (45 kilograms), and leave the bedroom that has become a prison for her in recent years.

She tells the publication, "I'm ready to blow this joint."

She admits letters from fans of What's Eating Gilbert Grape have kept her positive over the years and inspired her drastic weightloss.


Videos

Photos