The New York Times recently published a cringe-inducing article by Laura M. Holson on how Hollywood movie casting directors are purportedly not interested in hiring those performers who have “had work done.” Let’s get right into it: A Little Too Ready for Her Close-Up?:
In small but significant numbers, filmmakers and casting executives are beginning to re-examine Hollywood’s attitude toward breast implants, Botox, collagen-injected lips and all manner of plastic surgery.
Television executives at Fox Broadcasting, for example, say they have begun recruiting more natural looking actors from Australia and Britain because the amply endowed, freakishly young-looking crowd that shows up for auditions in Los Angeles suffers from too much sameness.
“I think everyone either looks like a drag queen or a stripper,” said Marcia Shulman, who oversees casting for Fox’s scripted shows.
Independent casting directors like Mindy Marin, who worked on the Jason Reitman film “Up in the Air,” are urging talent agents to discourage clients from having surgery, particularly older celebrities who, she contends, are losing jobs because their skin is either too taut or swollen with filler. Said Ms. Marin: “What I want to see is real.”
Even extras get the once-over. Sande Alessi, who helped cast the “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies, said she offers to photograph actresses in their bathing suits, telling them they can keep the photo for their audition books.
Professional courtesy? Not exactly. Moviemakers prefer actresses with natural breasts for costume dramas and period films. So much so that when the Walt Disney Company recently advertised for extras for the new “Pirates” film, the casting call specified that only women with real breasts need apply. By taking a photograph, Ms. Alessi said, “we don’t have to ask, we will know.”
Do you get a slight indication here of the general attitude of exploitation among these casting pros? As if these in-demand natural breasts would ever be shown onscreen in these adventure films.
The move toward “less is more” is being propelled by a series of colliding social and technological trends, more than a dozen film and television professionals said.
Plastic surgery is not going away anytime soon in tinseltown. In fact, its use is way up. Well-done cosmetic surgery is not rejected in casting calls; it is the “awful plastic surgery” types who get shown the door. Celebrities who get really good cosmetic work done continue to get parts in TV and films. If anything, Holson is missing the real trend that is going on in Hollywood where females are concerned — the move away from the anorexic, wafer-thin supermodel look towards one that is more zoftig.
This article seems to be part of the media’s caterwauling over celebrity Heidi Montag’s recent “ten cosmetic procedures in one day” adventure, which incidentally was a wildly successful publicity stunt that has gotten her more work in Hollywood than ever before.
Read it all. The folks in the back lot have to be scratching their heads or giggling at Holson and The Times.