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Miley Cyrus, the New Brooke Shields?

April 29, 2008

As you have seen on the news recently, controversial photos of Miley Cyrus have shown up, or are about to show up, in a Vanity Fair magazine. I was wondering what you all thought of the photos, of the magazine, the photographer Annie Leibovitz, and the whole situation.

I’m wondering how BuildABearVille.com (TM) will support her or if just leaving the promotion up in the Pawforming Arts Center is their way of showing support.

Share your thoughts!

7pm 2008/04/29 Update:

Qmoonbeam and WriteasRain’s comments bring perspective and enlightenment to the background that is not covered in the media. There’s been some very eloquent writing today and good reading. It’s quite an array of diverse opinions that we’ve all been able to share respectfully. My compliments to all of you!

Somehow a link to the NY Times article on Miley Cyrus and the photo shoot came into my blog. Being the well respected news venue that it is, I clicked on it and read through it. What really struck me was the fine print correction at the bottom of the article. It seems to validate a few of the opinions below that the media has blown this whole photo shoot out of perspective. I’m disappointed in the NY Times. No wonder there was an uproar Monday night! The Tuesday correction states:

Correction: April 29, 2008
A headline and an article on Monday about a Vanity Fair photograph showing the actress Miley Cyrus in a suggestive pose left the incorrect impression that she was bare-breasted. While the pose was indeed revealing, she was wrapped in what appeared to be a bedsheet; she was not topless.

(ref http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/28/business/media/28hannah.html)

History repeats itself as I am reminded of Brooke Shield’s Calvin Klein jeans commercial. For those of you that are too young to remember – she was a 15 year old supermodel in 1980 who appeared in a television commercial, in a very provocative pose stating, “Nothing comes between me and my Calvin’s.” In a response to the outrage of consumer and child advocates, the US Justice Department launched an investigation to determine whether or not Calvin Klein violated child pornography laws.

The commercial was eventually pulled by Calvin Klein but not before I, at the same age as the famed supermodel, had to go out and buy as many pairs of Calvin’s as I could after that. Mom didn’t like it. This was the introduction of designer jeans to the American consumer. Here’s one that will either make you mom’s cringe or delight in the faded memories of laying on a bed to zip ‘em up……Jordache!

I have added a link to my recent post in the blogroll on the side bar.

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32 Comments
  1. waldso permalink
    April 29, 2008 8:08 am

    Well to start off she did not even think she was doing this she thought it was a regular photo shoot!

  2. tessapopstar3 permalink
    April 29, 2008 8:45 am

    yeah, she didn’t know what kind of photos she was going to be taking when she signed the contract. she also wasn’t told that the “specific” photo would be on the cover of the magazine. she has apologized to her fans, so i don’t see any reason for people to criticize her, but more reason to criticize the photographer and her agent that helped her sign the contract.

  3. sarahbearish<3 permalink
    April 29, 2008 9:27 am

    oh wow i didn’t even know about this until just now…

  4. writeasrain permalink
    April 29, 2008 9:28 am

    We all know that the media related tabloid papers are capable of huge manipulation…however, Vanity Fair has had it’s own share of edgy, cover shots over the years. Part of the magazines success is that it has done very controversial covers.

    Remember, Demi Moore’s naked pregnant photograph on the cover back in the 80’s; or perhaps, just a few years ago duo images of Scarlett Johnanssen and another female movie star in the nude, or perhaps, Brad Pitt in his boxers? Those types of photo shoots have lead to high sales of their magazine. That information should have been a red flag to the people helping Miley make business decisions.

    Unfortunately, this whole situation could have been avoided if only Miley’s advisors would keep in mind that she is a teen; albeit a very talented teen, but, a teen nonetheless. Poor Miley is trying to walk through a publicity mine field. Her personal testimony as a Christian and possibly her career as a budding “clean cut” teen talent could be damaged because of her professional choices.

    When you are in the public eye…there is a section of people who are not only waiting for a postitive role model to fall…they are more than willing, to help make it happen, if only for the notoriety it brings them…not to mention the almighty $$$’s that it could bring them as well.

    Those behind the scenes who allowed this to happen to a young teenaged girl really ought to be ashamed and I hope that the backlash will teach them a lesson. They have contributed to the breakdown of our social and moral boundaries here in America.

  5. dhukai permalink
    April 29, 2008 10:15 am

    The photographer is quite clever at getting people to agree to unusual photos, and I don’t think that is a problem when the subjects are adults. However, 15-year-olds are not adults, no matter how famous they are. The adults around them, including parents and agents, have a duty to protect them rather than encourage their exploitation.

  6. jasmineapril7 permalink
    April 29, 2008 10:49 am

    I agree with Tessa-Miley should not be the one criticized here. The photographer and her parents should have known better and Miley is still a child and this picture borderlines pornography.

  7. sammik permalink
    April 29, 2008 10:50 am

    I’m going to play devil’s advocate and point out that her parents and managers were all there too. Also, even if she “didn’t know” what photos were going to be taken, she could have said “no” if she thought one was inappropriate.

  8. sammik permalink
    April 29, 2008 10:53 am

    And also, she may still be “a child,” but at 15, people are quite capable of making their own decisions. After all, you can get a learner’s permit to drive in most states at 15, and can get married the next year with parental permission.

    I don’t blame her or think she’s a terrible person, but I think she made an honest mistake. It is hard to say no to people, especially when you’re that famous. But really, every girl wants to feel beautiful, so if someone is to be “blamed,” I think it’s the media and the images they promote as “beautiful” for the girls in this country.

  9. corinneultracool permalink
    April 29, 2008 11:56 am

    i think its rude how the public and the media are getting involed in her life!i think if its her life and she thinks she is olderife to pose for the photos let her do that but the only way to get by in life is to learn from your mistakes!

  10. kaelynmarch permalink
    April 29, 2008 12:30 pm

    I feel bad for her, she was probably put up to it.

  11. alyssaluv2read9 permalink
    April 29, 2008 12:54 pm

    I honestly don’t think she was put up to it. I feel bad for her, especially with all of those other pictures of hers that came out earlier this month.

  12. JessBearHug permalink
    April 29, 2008 2:10 pm

    There are many, many young stars, present and past, who did not pose for controversial pictures. Both of her parents were there. If you look through Vanity Fair’s behind the shoot pictures, her mom is even helping to fix her make-up. Her dad is in some of the pictures. Controversy sells. These are not stupid, manipulated people. These are very smart, business-savey people. Controversy keeps you in the public eye and sells more stuff. Think about anyone involved in a controversy and you will see that they never disappear. They sell more books, make more public appearances, make more money. They say they’re sorry. They sell more. Like they say when someone is pushing drugs “Just say NO”.

  13. kitten1462 permalink
    April 29, 2008 3:35 pm

    I am on both sides. First of all, I saw the paicture, it wasn’t really that bad. There was a cloth that covered enough. And it’s not like the cloth was see through. Than again, I’m shocked she did this. I think it was wrong.

  14. sushirox336 permalink
    April 29, 2008 4:16 pm

    i was very sad to see that on the front page of yahoo yesterday…. although the cloth was covering her, it still was not an image for her younger fans to look up to. then again, she might have not of had a choice, due to her contract etc.

  15. linda‼ permalink
    April 29, 2008 4:32 pm

    I feel bad for her. But I’m really upset by the media. I mean they are saying it’s bad for her fans to see yet they are posting the picture on covers of newspapers and all over tv.

  16. qMoonbeam/AbigailNightingale permalink
    April 29, 2008 5:56 pm

    At first blush, the two photos that are causing the stir caused me to wonder what in the WORLD they (the Cyrus famiy) were thinking to have allowed this to happen! But because of Freya’s query here, I decided to look into it further. Worth my time, not sure…my kid’s are not even MC/HM fans in the least, but for Freya — anything! 😉

    I went to the VF mag website and viewed both the slideshow and the video of the photo shoot. I now have a *completely* different take on the photos. IMO, it is the media that are blowing it out of proportion *like so many other things again* and causing the situation to spin out of control.

    When seen out of context, the photo of Miley alone in the sheet made me feel ill the way that “what adults do to children regarding porn or drugs” will do. And I was uncomfortable with the provocative shot of Miley with her dad…mainly because she is in an awkward pose with an adult male and her clothing makes her appear vulnerable.

    But in the full context of the photo shoot, with its outdoor picnic atmosphere and so many other people present, watching or contributing to the many shots that were taken, there is no element in any of the shots that appear to be actually innapropriate. There were many shots taken of Miley and her dad that are just that…a dad and daughter with a great family connection just hanging out — just happen that they are sitting on what looks to be a canvas backdrop on a platform out in a field in the country. Just any family, any time, any place out for fun…they just happen to also have a photo/makeup/hair people there!

    Any of the other photos from that shoot could not have been taken by the magazine and made to appear inappropriate for Miley. Whether the photographer knew when she took those particular shots that the magazine could make them look the way they did, I don’t know. But if there is blame, I thinkk it falls on the people who knew that they could cause the photos to *appear* to be more than they are…even by making them appear that they were shot in the privacy of a studio rather than out in the open air with all those people around.

    btw, don’t know much about the kid, but when I’ve heard her voice, I think it’s amazing that she is so young!

  17. jacsan permalink
    April 29, 2008 6:09 pm

    i say that she isn’t responsible, more likely her agent and the media. What really bothers me is that the media takes these things and makes them like a real “bang” to attract public. Which I feel it’s pretty irresponsible. Because these are kids idols and what kids see is not Miley Cyrus posing, but Hannah Montana. Just like the don’t understand that the actor who interprets Harry Potter was kissing a guy, what kids see is Harry Potter kissing some guy. Or the actor of High School Musical in a sex scene, but the character of the film in the sex scene. That’s the real problem of this. These are example figures to the upcoming generations, they are kids heroes, and it really affects the image of what is right or wrong.

  18. bubasride permalink
    April 29, 2008 6:28 pm

    i wasn’t sure what to think about the whole situation so after reading comments from above I web searched! I went to the vanity fair website and they actually had a video of behind the scenes of the shoot! That video made a big difference in my view! there were a ton of differnt shots of her with the cloth around her and vanity fair choose the shot I believe was the “sexist”. The other shots just lookes like she was wearing a tube top just like some of our avatars wear! If you have any doubts please go to vanity fair and check it out!!!

  19. April 29, 2008 6:59 pm

    Wow – super job researching qmoonbeam!

    Your post and WriteasRain’s bring perspective and enlightenment to the background that is not covered in the media. There’s been some very eloquent writing today and good reading. It’s quite an array of diverse opinions that we’ve all been able to share respectfully. My compliments to all of you!

    Somehow a link to the NY Times article came into the blog on Miley Cyrus and the photo shoot. Being the well respected news venue that it is, I clicked on it and read through it. What really struck me was the fine print correction at the bottom of the article. It seems to validate a few of the opinions above that the media has blown this whole photo shoot out of perspective. I’m disappointed in the NY Times. No wonder there was an uproar Monday night, the Tuesday correction states:

    “Correction: April 29, 2008
    A headline and an article on Monday about a Vanity Fair photograph showing the actress Miley Cyrus in a suggestive pose left the incorrect impression that she was bare-breasted. While the pose was indeed revealing, she was wrapped in what appeared to be a bedsheet; she was not topless.”
    (ref http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/28/business/media/28hannah.html)

    History repeats itself as I am reminded of Brooke Shield’s Calvin Klein jeans commercial. For those of you that are too young to remember – she was a 15 year old supermodel in 1980 who appeared in a commercial, in a very provocative pose, stating “Nothing comes between me and my Calvin’s.” In a response to the outrage of consumer and child advocates the US Justice Department launched an investigation to determine whether or not Calvin Klein violated child pornography laws.

    The commercial was eventually pulled by Calvin Klein but not before I, at the same age as the famed supermodel, had to go out and buy as many pairs of Calvin’s as I could after that. Mom didn’t like it. This was the introduction of designer jeans to the American consumer. Here’s one that will either make you mom’s cringe or delight in the faded memories of laying on a bed to zip ’em up……Jordache!

  20. bubasride permalink
    April 29, 2008 7:12 pm

    sorry my computer is slow and did not notice that someone else had gone on and posted before mabout the vanity fair website!! I need to refresh my page before leaving further comments! Sorry!!!

  21. April 29, 2008 7:22 pm

    That’s alright bubasride – it seems you and qmoonbeam both did some good research and have the same perspective! I haven’t had a change to look at it so I appreciate the two reviews.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  22. momlovestocook permalink
    April 29, 2008 7:38 pm

    I was thinking about why this is such a big story. Part of it I believe is the amount of the younger stars who have had problems lately(Jamie Spears, Brittany, Lindsay Lohan). It puts the spotlight even brighter on the other young stars.
    I think at 15, we all wanted to look older. I don’t fault her for wanting to look grown up(it is a grown up magazine after all).
    I have two girls who are not quite 15 but they still will lay with their father on the couch-not sure why there is such an uproar over that picture.

  23. faithballetbear5 permalink
    April 29, 2008 7:45 pm

    I agree with a lot of what is being said. I personally would never allow my child to have her picture made like that. But part of me also says if this wasn’t Miley Cyrus we were talking about, but a portrait done by an artist to be hung in a gallery, would anyone be talking about it? Still, I’m a very conservative person so I just thought it was not appropriate. If put in that same situation, I would probably have chose a different magazine.

  24. lhk528 permalink
    April 29, 2008 7:50 pm

    I did not know that adults went on BABV no offense to you guys I just didn’t know.

  25. starofstars permalink
    April 29, 2008 8:27 pm

    WELL i have a different opinion 🙂
    She should have not done that of course but if you think about the showing to much skin photo why dont they critize her when she is in a bikini that show way more that blanket photo.

  26. starofstars permalink
    April 29, 2008 8:29 pm

    At the same time a agree with Qmoon the parents should have had more caution. Also i think the press is making a big deal out of photos

  27. April 29, 2008 8:36 pm

    Great point starofstars about the bathing suit showing more. I’m thinking it’s more of the messy hair and facial expression that makes her look provocative – and beautiful I have to say but certainly not Disneyish.

    I have absolutely no problem with the Miley and Dad photos. A young girls relationship with her Dad is the foundation for a healthy relationship with men later. I think many that see those photos as anything other than a healthy happy relationship did not have that with their Dad.

    lhk528 – Most of us have young ones that we play with or help on BuildABearVille, some of our kids can’t even type yet and we are careful to monitor their internet interactions.

    Momlovestocook – Your so right and the whole Disney corp seems to be the spine behind Britney, Lindsey, Jamie and Miley……..a common thread there!

  28. tessapopstar3 permalink
    April 29, 2008 8:51 pm

    i agree with writeasrain too- the photographer-Annie Leibovitz- as a history of producing photographs this way. also, the article on cnn.com (not sure if i’m allowed to link…) states that her parents left before that picture was taken, and being the person the Annie Leibovitz is, she could have easily manipulated miley in to doing what she did.

  29. faithballetbear5 permalink
    April 29, 2008 9:34 pm

    Just commenting on post #24…
    Okay now I feel old.

  30. April 29, 2008 9:38 pm

    LOL FaithBB, me too!

    Yes Tessapopstar3 a link is highly appropriate in this situation as a reference!

    I heard the name a lot but didn’t know her reputation (Leibovitz that is)

  31. sammik permalink
    April 29, 2008 10:00 pm

    If you’ve taken a look around at what 15-year-olds are wearing nowadays, the “sheet” covering her isn’t even really all that bad.

    Plus, if you look at the Behind-the-Scenes stuff, there are several candid shots of her with the sheet and she looks quite at home.

  32. hannahbearathlete10 permalink
    April 30, 2008 1:27 am

    I really just felt weird when I heard about this. This picture was a minor thing, but what about next time?(If she does it again?) What if she does something really wrong? Disney is a family company! They won’t have stuff like this! Tweens want her as a person to look up too! If this ever happens again, Hannah Montana is going to drop!

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