Hollywood stars back Jennifer Aniston after blast at tabloids over body shaming

Former Friends star’s attack on media for dehumanising women supported by Melissa McCarthy, Anna Paquin, Nikki Reed and husband Justin Theroux among others; Piers Morgan hits back

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 14 July, 2016, 10:43am
UPDATED : Thursday, 14 July, 2016, 10:44am

Hollywood stars came out to support Jennifer Aniston after she penned a scathing blog post railing against years of tabloid scrutiny of her figure and persistent pregnancy rumours.

The former Friends star complained about daily harassment by paparazzi and questioned a celebrity news culture that objectifies women, insisting: “For the record, I am not pregnant. What I am is fed up.”

“The objectification and scrutiny we put women through is absurd and disturbing,” she wrote in the Huffington Post piece. “The way I am portrayed by the media is simply a reflection of how we see and portray women in general, measured against some warped standard of beauty.”

The 47-year-old actress’ article comes three months after she spoke of her excitement over being named for the second time by People magazine as the world’s most beautiful woman.

“We use celebrity ‘news’ to perpetuate this dehumanising view of females, focused solely on one’s physical appearance, which tabloids turn into a sporting event of speculation,” said Aniston, who posed nude on the cover of GQ magazine in 2009.

Ghostbusters star Melissa McCarthy spoke out in support of Aniston, saying she was “one hundred thousand billion per cent” behind the Horrible Bosses star’s call for a change in the way women are judged in Hollywood.

“It’s a ridiculous thing,” the 45-year-old told celebrity magazine Entertainment Tonight. “I just hope it gets to the point where it’s embarrassing for people to have such a shallow thought.”

Twitter reaction to Aniston’s remarks

Aniston’s husband, Justin Theroux, 44, took to photo-sharing platform Instagram to show his support for his wife, posting a black and white image of the actress at a bowling alley and linking to her piece.

She was also backed by fellow actresses Olivia Wilde, Anna Paquin, Margret Cho and The Vampire Diaries star Nikki Reed, who described Aniston’s blog post as “beautiful, eloquent, and a true dose of kickass”.

But British television presenter and journalist Piers Morgan, who is editor-at-large of the US edition of Britain’s Daily Mail newspaper, published a counter-essay entitled “My dear Jennifer, if you’re so fed up with having your body judged, stop trying to make it look so Photoshop-perfect on magazine covers.”

More Twitter reaction

“There’s another reason why the media objectify and scrutinise famous women, and why little girls get confused about beauty and body image,” he wrote. “It’s this: female stars like Jennifer Aniston deliberately perpetuate the myth of ‘perfection’ by posing for endless magazine covers which have been airbrushed so much that in some cases the celebrity is virtually unrecognisable.”