Saturday 18 August 2018

'Dress criticism is ridiculous, I chose to be cold': Lawrence

Jennifer Lawrence attending a 'Red Sparrow' in London wearing a black Versace dress Photo: Ian West/PA Wire
Jennifer Lawrence attending a 'Red Sparrow' in London wearing a black Versace dress Photo: Ian West/PA Wire

Helena Horton

Jennifer Lawrence has hit out at feminist campaigners who criticised her for wearing a revealing dress in the cold London air, calling them "ridiculous".

The actress defended her right to wear a skimpy Versace dress during a promotional event for the film 'Red Sparrow' earlier this week.

While Lawrence wore the strappy gown, which featured a thigh-high split, male co-stars Joel Edgerton, Jeremy Irons, Matthias Schoenaerts and director Francis Lawrence were all in multiple layers of clothing, and many pointed out the contrast.

Writer Helen Lewis attracted thousands of retweets when she wrote: "This is such a quietly depressing (and revealing) image. Not least because I've been outside today and it's b***** freezing."

Actor and comedian Robert Webb tweeted: "To all those saying JL 'chose' to wear that dress: fine but that choice has a context. She could have made a different decision but we can agree on one thing: it's not a decision to which the blokes had to give the slightest thought."

He added: "When Ryan Gosling gets paid to model Versace's latest mankini we'll have a conversation about equality and human bodies as decoration."

Lawrence responded to critics in an impassioned Facebook post, writing: "This is not only utterly ridiculous, I am extremely offended.

"That Versace dress was fabulous, you think I'm going to cover that gorgeous dress up with a coat and a scarf? I was outside for five minutes. I would have stood in the snow for that dress because I love fashion and that was my choice.

"This is sexist, this is ridiculous, this is not feminism. Over-reacting about everything someone says or does, creating controversy over silly innocuous things such as what I choose to wear or not wear, is not moving us forward.

"It's creating silly distractions from real issues. Get a grip people. Everything you see me wear is my choice. And if I want to be cold that's my choice too!"

Prior to her statement, hundreds of social media users expressed pity for the actress, and labelled the men as "ungallant".

But leading women's rights charity The Fawcett Society said the image showed that gender equality in the entertainment industry was "a long way off".

The actress has been a vocal supporter of the #TimesUp campaign, recently wearing a black dress to the Baftas in support of the campaign against sexual harassment.

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