The stars of the 2017 Pirelli Calendar are makeup-free
See Julianne Moore, Jessica Chastain, Nicole Kidman, Rooney Mara and more in all their glory
More photos from next year's Pirelli Calendar has been released. Peter Lindbergh, who shot for the calendar in 1996 and 2002, returns to photograph 14 award-winning actresses for the 2017 edition. They are Jessica Chastain, Penélope Cruz, Nicole Kidman, Rooney Mara, Helen Mirren, Julianne Moore, Lupita Nyong'o, Charlotte Rampling, Léa Seydoux, Uma Thurman, Alicia Vikander, Kate Winslet, Robin Wright, and Zhang Ziyi. The cast also includes special guest Anastasia Ignatova, a Political Theory professor at Moscow State University.
The Pirelli Calendar was famous for featuring a lot of nudity, with scantily-clad models. But last year with Annie Leibovitz, it moved away from the raunchiness and put more focus on the reality of female bodies, albeit still with some nudity. In the 2017 version, Lindbergh's subjects go bare-skinned and makeup-free in black and white photos, and they are as beautiful and empowering as you can expect from a star-studded calendar.
According to Lindbergh himself, he chose to shoot the women in black and white to "remind everyone that there's a beauty that's more real and truthful and not manipulated by commercial or any other interests."
"Beauty speaks about individuality, courage to be yourself, and your very own sensibility – that's my definition of a woman today," he added. "That's the goal of the calendar – to the show the woman. And not this stretched, manipulated, emptied [person] you see in the magazines today."
And it seems that the Pirelli stars echo Lindbergh's thoughts too. "We are used to such spectacular images, aren't we?" Helen said of retouched photos and editorials. "Here, we're going away from that – let's find the 'amazing' in something that's human and real. It is dangerous. [We] need our eyes to be re-educated because we're so used to these spectacular, digitally enhanced pictures."
"I think Peter's mission with everyone involved wanting to free women from oppressive and false standards is fantastic," Uma added.
Scroll on to see Lindbergh working with the actresses behind-the-scenes.