Sistaaahhs, Whoopi Goldberg and Naomi Campbell are on my mind and I’ve got these two amazing covers to thank for it.
Thirty years ago to the day, a then two-time Oscar nominee Whoopi Goldberg sat nervously in her chair waiting to see whose name would be called as the winner for Best Supporting Actress at the 1991 Academy Awards. Spoiler alert: it was her name. Three decades later, not only has she cemented her status in Hollywood as a talented, history-making actress (that 1991 win was the first for a Black woman in 50 years) and award-winning daytime talk show host but also a full-blown EGOT (that’s short for Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony, for those of you who don’t know) and cultural icon. Her career is one most industry folks would only dream about as it’s filled with many notable roles such as: The Color Purple’s Celie, Ghost’s Oda Mae Brown, The Lion King’s Shenzi, and my personal favorite, Sister Act and Sister Act 2’s Sister Mary Clarence. That’s why it only made perfect sense for Variety to highlight her in their Oscar 2021 Hollywood Royalty issue.
And highlight they did—I mean, just look at that hair! Look at the skin! Look at her smize! Honestly, who is doing it better than Whoopi? (Hit it Keith Sweat: “noboooody.”) These lewks coupled with the fact that an all-Black team was responsible for putting everything together, (I’m talking hair, makeup, styling, and photography) just makes this entire spread that much more meaningful.
And speaking of lewks, supermodel Naomi Campbell was also tapped to do what she does best as the Spring cover star for Interview Magazine. In conversation with designer Marc Jacobs and sporting everything from Chanel and Jacquemus to Bottega Veneta, Campbell also reflected on her 30-year career in the fashion industry, touching on everything from the concept of fame, doing life in Africa, and her biggest regret as a young model.
One of the things that’s really come to surface right now for me is that we don’t have any control over our image as models, and that’s really sad. When I was doing my book with Taschen, there were a few photographers whose names I won’t say, but who we do know and who I’ve worked for over the years for, like, one dollar, who came back saying they wanted all this money to be in the book. And I was like, “Excuse me, you’ve forgotten.” There’s going to have to be a change in our industry where they protect us as models better than they have, because we cannot just sign our image away and not have any ownership over it.
That’s why doing this docuseries [The Supermodels] with Linda [Evangelista], Christy [Turlington], and Cindy [Crawford] was so important, because it’s our legacy that we’re talking about. I’m bringing this up because I feel like it’s going to come up sooner than later, so it might as well come up now. When we signed papers giving our lives away, no one ever explained anything back then, and when you’re younger, you want so much to be in a magazine, or to do the shoot, so you just sign these things, but no one ever really, really explained what the small print was about.
She concluded, “I’m not trying to make any headlines, but it’s something that’s been on my mind heavily, and it needs to be unraveled and really gone through, so that it benefits everyone. It’s not going to change overnight, but it needs to be changed.” Speak on it Naomi, speak on it.