|Dame Maggie, Wrinkled Goddess|
The advent of HDTV has made even younger people Botox and "fill" every facial line -- most sitcoms now look peopled with Barbie dolls.
facial work undergone by the star, Jennifer Westfeldt [left]. Born in 1970, Westfeldt -- who also wrote and directed -- goes through the entire movie without her forehead ever moving. She looks nothing like her real self as seen in Kissing Jessica Stein.
Fittingly, when the Today show did a piece attacking actress plastic surgery centered on the admission and regret of actress Emmanuelle Béart, the program showed a "before surgery" photo of Dirty Dancing actress Jennifer Grey -- and her "after" photo was mistakenly one of Westfeldt. They are all starting to look the same, when what we liked about them in the first place was their distinctiveness.
a reader poll "Worst Plastic Surgery" at the Cannes Film Festival. [Below]
scrutiny, felt compelled to publish a retort in The Daily Beast:
The fact that it's Ashley who's taking this on -- and being hyperverbal and brainiac about it -- doesn't surprise me.
But after the screening and Q&A, the theater emptied out and its star found herself stranded on the sidewalk, and I ended up giving her a ride back into town. I found Ashley guileless, thoughtful and grounded, especially impressive since she came from a family that seemed showbiz-nutty (her older sister and divorcee mom were already the famous singing duo The Judds).
So it hit home when I read in her piece that she has since decided that even positive articles are bullshit:
I arrived at this belief after first, when I began working as an actor 18 years ago, reading everything. I evolved into selecting only the “good” pieces to read. Over time, I matured into the understanding that good and bad are equally fanciful interpretations. I do not want to give my power, my self-esteem, or my autonomy, to any person, place, or thing outside myself. I thus abstain from all media about myself.This clearly can't be true, since this hubbub about her puffy face -- which she ascribes to steroids -- pierced her enough to write. But thank you Ashley for standing up. I have had loved ones deal with this medically induced alteration and the social teasing that comes with it. I can't imagine the scrutiny all actresses undergo as they are stared at by executives, directors and co-stars, much less their general public. Ashley asks:
What is the gloating about? What is the condemnation about? What is the self-righteous alleged “all knowing” stance of the media about? How does this symbolize constraints on girls and women, and encroach on our right to be simply as we are, at any given moment? How can we as individuals in our private lives make adjustments that support us in shedding unconscious actions, internalized beliefs, and fears about our worthiness, that perpetuate such meanness?Maybe everyone should be forced to (re-) watch Thomas Crown Affair and realize that true beauty is always better than artificial perfection.
UPDATE: Lara Flynn Boyle, what have you done?