Nicole along with other amazing actresses like Jessica Chastain, Kate Winslet, Robin Wright and Julianne Moore are going to be featured in the new Pirelli Calendar.
Last year the famous Pirelli Calendar took a huge departure from its traditional spread of nude or barely clothed young models to celebrate a different kind of women. The Annie Leibovitz–shot gallery featured accomplished women like Serena Williams, Yao Chen, Patti Smith, Yoko Ono, Ava DuVernay, and, perhaps most memorably, a stripped-down Amy Schumer. This year’s calendar is almost entirely comprised of Oscar-caliber actresses with the exception of Anastacia Ignatova—a Moscow State University professor credited as “special guest.”
The full 2017 list, including Ignatova, is Lupita Nyong’o, Jessica Chastain, Uma Thurman, Nicole Kidman, Lea Seydoux, Robin Wright, Zhang Ziyi, Helen Mirren, Rooney Mara, Penelope Cruz, Julianne Moore, Charlotte Rampling, Alicia Vikander, Kate Winslet, and Jessica Chastain. This lineup—though not as racially diverse as the 2016 group—shows a clear preference toward more mature women. The average age of the 14 actresses is 44 years old, an anomaly in an industry that is renowned for its obsession with youth and beauty.
Though beauty is, of course, in no short supply among these actresses, photographer Peter Lindbergh tells Vogue he intended the 2017 lineup to be “a counter message to [the industry’s] fake beauty ideal.” In selecting his 2017 models, Lindbergh says he gathered “all the big names of actresses who are not known to do bimbo movies, but are known to do sensible films—most of them have got Oscars—and then let them be them.”
When Lindbergh last shot the calendar 13 years ago, his subjects were all young, up-and-coming actresses like Amy Smart, Brittany Murphy, Julia Stiles, Rachael Leigh Cook, Erika Christensen, Selma Blair, Lauren Bush, James King, and Bridget Moynahan in full glam mode. This year, Lindbergh says, he wanted to make the spread “a love song to the women I really know and really like, and there’s no exception. Everyone in this calendar, at one point in my life, I wanted to marry, and I didn’t have the balls to ask them!”
In the preview images above, the actresses aren’t exactly roll-out-of-bed fresh, but they are more tousled than your average pinup calendar look. Hair undone, sometimes in casual clothes, sometimes even looking makeup-free; these are Hollywood icons de-glammed. Lindbergh says he hopes the raw portraits of these famous, brilliant actresses in the 2017 calendar will allow Pirelli fans to connect with a different kind of female beauty:
You take everything away, you take the perfection away, you take great hairdos and wonderful makeup away—you take everything away and you say, ‘These are the twelve of the most sensible, emotional, [actresses].’ If you shoot it on women nobody knows, well, that’s a good idea too, but then you would not make the connection. What I wanted to do was get the 12 actresses who are the most important actresses—after them, there are not many others left—and use them with that message. Not to put them in character, not to do anything to them, [just say] ‘This is them, and they are raw, and they are sensible, and they are emotional.’ This is beautiful for me. That’s why I like this calendar more than any other before, including the ones I did.
Lindbergh—who first shot for Pirelli in 1996—relishes the opportunity to use this traditionally cheesecake calendar to make such a bold commentary on female beauty. After working for decades in the fashion industry, Lindbergh’s frustration with the way narrow beauty standards have become even narrower has reached a boiling point. He calls the Photoshopping craze “horrible,” saying, “If legs are large, that’s because they are legs, no? Today, editors go, ‘Oh, it’s terrible!’ I say, ‘What’s terrible, it’s a fantastic leg.’ ‘[But] it’s so thick!’ And I say, ‘Sorry, they have some muscles or something.’” According to Lindbergh, the size restrictions on models have gotten out of hand: “In the good old days, we found models on the street. Today you can’t take a normal person into a fashion shoot, because they’d never fit in the clothes—I’m talking about beautiful women with great bodies. You get used to the idea that clothes look great when they’re not filled up.”
While the 2017 Pirelli calendar may not change the fashion industry overnight, Lindbergh hopes it provides an antidote to what he considers a toxic beauty standard:
Beauty today is really twisted, for commercial reasons, so people think beautiful is what you see in advertising and in magazines—all these retouched women. You have to be perfect, you have to be thin, you have to be young—you have to be all this, and this is bullshit. It’s so awful, and this image of beauty is imposed on people for commercial reasons, because you can’t make money [if] you say to someone, ‘You know what, you’re beautiful the way you are.
That’s a stunning message to see presented on the pages of one of the most famously revealing calendars. But we’ve come a long way.