Jessica Chastain Slams Own LA Times Magazine Cover for Featuring All White Actresses

Jessica Chastain Times Cover LA Times
LA Times

Actress Jessica Chastain responded on social media this week after critics slammed her for appearing on the cover of LA Times Magazine alongside a half-dozen other white actresses for a story about women’s equality in Hollywood.

Chastain, the 40-year-old star of the drama and upcoming awards-season hopeful Molly’s Game, covered the magazine’s pre-Chritsmas issue alongside fellow actresses Kate Winslet (Wonder Wheel), Diane Kruger (In the Fade), Saoirse Ronan (Lady Bird), Margot Robbie (I, Tonya), and Annette Bening (Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool).

Critics immediately noticed the lack of any actresses of color on the magazine cover, including author Rebecca Carroll, who tweeted directly at Chastain.

“Honestly @jes_chastain as an outspoken voice for equality how do you pose for a photo like this and not feel absolutely mortified by the blatant exclusion?” Carroll wrote in a tweet. “How is it possible to not understand the msg this photo sends?”

The actress responded by calling the photo a “sad look,” though the contact between the women on the cover suggests that they were in the same room when it was being shot.

“Its a sad look that there’s no WOC in this pic of us promoting our female lead films,” Chastain replied. “The industry needs to become more inclusive in its storytelling.”

Chastain also asked her followers to list their favorite films of the year starring lead actresses of color, but was shocked to find she couldn’t name just five.

“In 12 months there’s not even 5?!” she asked incredulously.

Of course, Carroll wasn’t the only social media user to blast the LA Times for its magazine cover. Others pointed out what they said was irony in the cover story’s celebration of women’s equality in Hollywood.

“Jessica Chastain and the other white women on the cover of the LA Times completely lack self-accountability and awareness when it’s comes to their white woman privilege in Hollywood,” one user wrote. “They have the power to use their voices to speak on more WOC diversity in Hollywood but no.”

“A shift in focus from … white men to white women? Who greenlights this?” added another.

As of Tuesday morning, none of the other actresses featured on the cover had responded to the criticism.


Follow Daniel Nussbaum on Twitter: @dznussbaum


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