Vanity Fair revealed the cover of it's 18th Annual Hollywood Issue today. And my, is it pretty. The actresses are (from left to right) Academy Award nominee, Rooney Mara (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo), should-have-been nominee for Jane Eyre, Mia Wasikowska, Academy Award Nominee and future Hunger Games star, Jennifer Lawrence, Academy Award Nominee, Jessica Chastain (The Help), Olsen twins' sister, Elizabeth Olsen (Martha Marcy May Marlene), Adepero Oduye (Pariah), Thank-god-she-didn't-get-an-Academy-Award-Nominee, Shailene Woodley (The Descendants), Wife of Robin Thicke, Paula Patton (Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocal), my year in advance nominee, Felicity Jones (Like Crazy), daughter of Phil Collins, Lily Collins (Abducted), and someone I had to Google to find out who she was, Brit Marling (Another Earth). It's the first time the cover was shot by photographer, Mario Testino. (I guess Annie Leibovitz decided to take a year off...or was asking too much.) They were going for a 1920's-30's feel this year and I think it's really gorgeous. It's airbrushed within an inch of it's life, but that adds to the glamour. It gives it a painterly quality and actually reminds me of fashion illustrations from the 30's.
I actually have a subscription to Vanity Fair. The sole reason is to receive this issue. Every month I get it in the mail and I'm disappointed by the lazy cover subject. Is there really anything new to learn about Angelina Jolie, Johnny Depp, or Jennifer Lopez? But, the Hollywood Issue can always be counted on for that three-page, fold-out cover of new stars. (Except in 2009 when Obama appeared on the cover instead. I was livid. They couldn't have done that for the February issue?) You see, the Hollywood Issue and I have a history. I have every year's issue since 1998. (Minus the Obama one. It was my protest against the breaking of a tradition.) In 1999, instead of flowers after my performance in the school play, my parents gave me that year's Hollywood Issue. Each year, I look forward to seeing what the theme will be and who will make that first panel. Some years have not been so great (4 male comedians with penguins?). Sometimes some of the predicted up-and-coming stars don't quite pan out (Quick- try to remember Claire Forlani, Alice Braga, or Sarah Wynter. There's a reason they're usually relegated to that third panel anyway). But, it always brings back a bit of classic Hollywood sophistication and fuses the feel of Old Hollywood with the modern Next-Big-Thing. My mom had this book, 'Life' Goes to the Movies, that I used to look at as a child. It really shaped my love of classic film because it made me want to know who these movie stars were. That's the same feeling I get with every new Vanity Fair Hollywood Issue.