Elle Magazine and Melissa McCarthy both insist that they are thrilled with a cover that has the “Bridesmaids” actress bundled up in a cashmere coat, even as critics gripe that the get-up was picked to hide the plus-size star’s curves.
McCarthy was one of four actresses actresses featured on the fashion magazine’s “Women of Hollywood” issue. Unlike McCarthy, fellow cover gals Penelope Cruz, Shailene Woodley and Reese Witherspoon were shown in more revealing attire.
In a “Good Morning America” segment about the furor surrounding the picture, McCarthy’s reps insist the star “loves the cover” and even picked out the coat.
For its part, Elle hails its handiwork, claiming McCarthy’s smokey eyes and femme fatale coiffure were inspired by film noir movies.
“On all of our shoots, our stylists work with the stars to choose pieces they feel good in, and this is no different: Melissa loved this look, and is gorgeous on our cover,” a spokeswoman for Elle said in a statement. “We are thrilled to honor her as one of our Women in Hollywood this year.”
TheWrap has reached out to McCarthy’s team for comment, but they have yet to respond.
Some critics were unconvinced that Elle was embracing McCarthy’s fulsome figure, commenting that the coat left an awful lot to the imagination.
“Perhaps photographer Thomas Whiteside only knows how to photograph the usual stick insect models, because he clearly has no clue how to highlight McCarthy’s curves,” June Thomas wrote on Slate.
And Go Fug Yourself noted, “Next to these other covers — Shailene Woodley is in underwear; Cotillard, a sports bra — I kind of can’t believe they put the plus-size actress on their cover BURIED INSIDE A GIANT COAT.”
Rex Reed, who got into a whole lot of hot water for comparing McCarthy to a “female hippo” and calling her “tractor sized” in a review of “Identity Thief,” has yet to weigh in, but we’ve reached out to him for comment.