For their 25th Hollywood Issue cover, Vanity Fair debuted the most diverse group of actors ever to grace their pages. It was about time, too.
Last year the cover caught plenty of flack–not only for the mostly white (and male) group of actors, but also for the Photoshop (or possibly styling) goof that made it look like Reese Witherspoon had three legs.
This year, the magazine course corrected in a major way. For one thing, none of the women are dressed in see-through clothing or lingerie for no apparent reason. For another, they assembled a truly diverse group of talented actors who starred in the year’s biggest films.
Chadwick Boseman: You almost certainly saw him as T’challa in Black Panther. And you should really check out VF‘s homepage, where you can see a video of him dancing while wearing a suit and Givenchy scarf.
Saoirse Ronan: This Irish actress has been one of our favorites for years. You can see her in theaters now as Mary, Queen of Scots. Or if you wait a little while, she’ll be back in Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of Little Women.
Timothée Chalamet: The hottest young actor in Hollywood, Chalamet has a busy year ahead of him. He will also star in Little Women alongside Saoirse Ronan, as well as a reboot of Dune and Henry V in Netflix’s The King.
Nicholas Hoult: He’s come a long way since his adorkable role as the kid in About a Boy. Nicholas Hoult will be back as Beast in the X-Men franchise, but he balances his comic book blockbusters with roles like the indie darling The Favourite. He’ll also be playing Tolkien in a biopic about the Lord of the Rings author.
Yalitza Aparicio: Her name might not be familiar to you yet, but Aparicio just made history as the first indigenous actress to get an Academy Award nomination. She starred in Alfonso Cuarón’s semi-autobiographical film Roma.
Rami Malek: His star-making turn as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody put Malek on the mainstream radar. It also earned him his first Oscar nomination. If you liked the Queen biopic, then you should check out his TV show Mr. Robot.
Regina King: She nabbed a well-deserved Oscar nomination for her work in If Beale Street Could Talk, but Regina King has been around for three decades. She’s one of the hardest-working and most reliably great actresses in Hollywood.
John David Washington: His career isn’t the highest profile of the group, but John David Washington is definitely an actor to watch. He’s been amazing on HBO’s Ballers for years, but you might have also seen him in Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman.
Elizabeth Debicki: The towering Aussie actress (who stands at 6’3″) most recently starred in Widows. You might have seen her as the femme fatale in The Night Manager opposite Tom Hiddleston.
Tessa Thompson: Tess Thompson is everywhere right now–and we’re so, so grateful. You can check her out on Westworld. Or in Creed II opposite Michael B. Jordan. Or in the upcoming blockbuster Men in Black: International with her Thor: Ragnarok costar Chris Hemsworth.
Henry Golding: The absolutely dreamy star of Crazy Rich Asians needs to be the lead in every romantic comedy from now on. He somehow manages to look exactly like Carey Grant while also being a gorgeous Malaysian man. How does he do it?
Vanity Fair hired diverse talent behind the camera, too. Emmanuel “Chivo” Lubezki, a Mexican cinematographer and 3-time Academy Award winner, took the photos. The actors and sets were styled by Samira Nasr, the magazine’s Executive Fashion Director with Trinidadian heritage.
Lubezki essentially shot short films of each actor and grouping, then selected stills for the cover. You can see the videos on the Vanity Fair website, and they are amazing!