Megan Fox in FHM
What are photographers saying to women when they’re posing like this in men’s magazines? Is it the same crap they say for the high school yearbook photos? “Hey there, pretty girl. Chin up. That’s right…”
But then, no one really needs to tell Megan Fox how pretty she is. She’s very well aware. (Gorgeous eyes and I do love this shot.)
I came across an interview with Fox in New York Times Magazine that I feel raises pertinent issues about women in Hollywood, particularly young, hot women in Hollywood.
The article, titled “The Self Manufacture of Megan Fox”, addresses Fox’s canny manipulation of the media. She’s managed to keep herself squarely in the spotlight despite the fact that she’s only made three films, albeit two huge blockbusters, Transformers and Transformers II (sheesh). Through a series of provocative interviews, seemingly off-the-cuff controversial remarks and ubiquitous photo spreads she’s become Hollywood’s next BIG THING. It seems innocuous, at this point, to mention that she’s not an actor.
Well, not by my definition anyway. An actor is someone who has studied acting as a craft, not as a means to gain notoriety, fame and lots of cold hard cash. An actor takes a written work in any genre and brings the story alive, delves deeply into character and takes the audience on a cathartic journey. Hollywood could give a shit less about any of that. Actors are products designed to make money and for many (not all) producers, studio executives and publicists the “sexy starlet” is the easiest path to a paycheck. That only works, however, if the starlet in question allows it to be so.
“All women in Hollywood are known as sex symbols. You’re sold, and it’s based on sex. That’s O.K., if you know how to use it.”
You know, I don’t think Kate Winslet got that memo. If she didn’t, I don’t want to be the one to give it to her. It takes talent and hard work to create the memorable performances that actresses like Winslet, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Christina Hendricks and Elizabeth Mitchell deliver. What saddens me about the immediate fame Megan Fox cultivates is that it may prevent her from pursuing the gift that is acting. Learning the craft, failing at it, hitting the boards night after night, finding something within yourself that you never knew was there, the glorious sound of riotous laughter from an engaged audience, the moment when you and your fellow actors realize you finally, finally got it right.
I don’t blame Megan Fox for pursuing her dream. I blame the people who cast her. When women like Fox, who freely admits her lack of acumen,
“I’m not one of these people who grew up studying acting or went to theater school,” Fox told me at the hotel. “I don’t know if I’m talented, I don’t know what I can do or can’t do. I had no skills at all.”
are cast in film after film based on their look and celebrity what message does that send young female actors? Quit the whole Stanislavsky thing! Get a nose job and an attitude, honey! Why should any hot, young girl think she has to act to be a star? Why should any hot, young girl think she has to act to be an actor?
I don’t have a problem with Fox’s beauty or her use of it to further her career. Beauty is a useful tool in this business but it can’t be the only one you rely on. I don’t begrudge her the wonderful, amazing opportunity that’s been dumped in her lap. I just don’t want her to sell herself, and us, short.