Here’s another black tee shirt. I took this photo of a movie action scene while trying to figure out the actress’s bra size. Afterward, I found a June 2001 interview in which the actress said that her character, who is supposed to be a 36DD, was made into a 36D for the movie series. The actress herself claimed to be a 36C.
Who is this actress, and what size do you think she really is?
Answer: Angelina Jolie.
Here’s an excerpt from the interview:
NYRock: Since we’re on the topic of getting into shape, what changes did you go through for your, you know, bust out role as Lara?
Angelina Jolie: C’mon, I’m not so flat chested to begin with. When I wear a tight T-shirt, I look a certain way. So it wasn’t like we had to completely change me. You know, we just had to enhance me a little.
I’m a 36C. Lara, she’s a 36D. And in the game, she’s a double D, so we took her down some. But we did give her a bit of padding there. For me, it was simply one size. So it was like having a padded bra. But no, I am not flat chested anyway.
So we still made it Lara Croft, but we didn’t go to any extremes. And Lara doesn’t apologize for herself, and for having that, you know, recognizable shape. So I’m not going to apologize for her either. Personally, I wouldn’t want those breasts. They seem kinda funny to me.
But we did want to put in something for those hardcore game fans. Lara has those big breasts in the game. We didn’t want to make them as big as in the game, but at the same time we didn’t want to take away from her the things that are, you know, her trademarks.
But I don’t know what all this fixation is about anyway. There are certainly lots of women in movies with big breasts. I mean, there are a lot of actresses with huge breasts, and characters with nothing but cleavage.
Beyond Angelina’s fictional bra size, I’ve taken an interest in the Lara Croft character after watching part of Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life at the gym the other day. I write about what caught my interest on today’s Campbell & Kate blog post.
Last year, I wrote about the strong but small-chested female characters on Nikita, Burn Notice and Covert Affairs and asked if anyone could think of a large-breasted heroine who is the main character in an action movie or television show. Now I’ve found one: Lara Croft.
As a computer animation, Lara doesn’t have to worry about sports bras, exposed bra straps or gapping shirts, but I appreciate that she even exists. According to her Wikipedia entry, there’s some criticism of her unrealistic body shape and concerns that she might be a negative role model for young girls. Granted, many of the images I dug up were unrealistic, mostly because of the ultra-tiny waists. But many weren’t. If you study the image below, you’ll see that even Lara must deal with a little bit of the Strum Strum Factor. As for her body shape, haven’t you seen women with these proportions? Some of you see them in the mirror every morning, don’t you?
In searching for fit models for my shirts, I’ve discovered attitudes about the dimensions I’ve requested that are simultaneously hilarious and sad. You can read them here and here. If I were an athletic tween or adolescent who was beginning to develop large breasts, I would find Lara Croft’s existence–and Angelina Jolie’s mislabeled portrayal of her–reassuring.
As a teen I could’ve definitely been one of your fit models (I know I had a 28″ waist and was wearing some obviously very poorly fitting 36C bras!). I often wonder what my measurements were back that and how much it would’ve helped my self-confidence if I would’ve known about proper bra fitting and how to look for clothes that fit my body better. Instead, I remember being pretty ashamed about my body and was always told I needed to buy bigger clothes to fit my bust. I wonder how the advent of clothes made especially for D+ women and blogs like ours will affect young teens?
June, you and I must be kindred spirits. I was fortunate to have a properly fitting bra beginning with my sophomore year in high school, and it definitely helped my self-confidence, but I still tended to wear baggy clothes on top.
I guess that, by existing, I and my unrealistic body shape provide a negative body image for girls. Oh dear. Maybe I shouldn’t walk down the street?
Glad to see she’s not only busty, but that she’s supposed to be intelligent. There are lots of busty characters but they are always the sex object, not whole characters unto themselves.
No walking down the street for you, Brittany. 🙂
I know that Lara Croft’s breasts are the main feature that people seem to remember about her character, but I think it’s interesting that her MALE creator included other attractive features like intelligence and athleticism. I guess those attributes contribute to her sex appeal, but they also show that it isn’t only a woman’s body parts that make her attractive.
I had breast reduction surgery when I was 16 in part because of parental pressure and in part because I didn’t know where to buy bras. I mean, I did – I went to department stores and those “lingerie” stores (like La Senza in Canada or Victoria Secret in the US). But they didn’t fit properly.
Turns out, I probably didn’t know my size. I don’t totally regret my choice anymore (it’s been a while since) but it took me some time to get there. I wish I had known then what I know now (Rod Stewart had it right!) – since I hadn’t finished puberty, I’m back to not being a ‘regular’ size. You wouldn’t know it since my bras now fit and wearing the right size makes such a difference, as you said.
At 16, it’s very likely I would have had your ‘fit’ measurements. Less likely now, though I do have a relatively small waist comparative to my bust. I don’t know that I love Lara Croft (from a feminist perspective, I have some concerns) but I had never ever considered her from the perspective that you described. Food for thought – thank you!
Thanks for sharing your experience, Thalia. It’s crazy how something so simple as a properly fitting bra can have such an effect on us. I’d be interested in hearing your feminist concerns about Lara Croft.
It amazed me how much wearing the right bra changed my appearance but also my confidence – I didn’t feel like my chest was something I had to be ashamed of or cover up. I am now someone who extolls the virtues of being properly fitted and spending more on your bras.
As for Lara Croft, well, she’s sort of a highly contested figure from a feminist viewpoint (bearing in mind that there are thousands of branches of feminism!) She’s both this sexual symbol and an empowered female. I really liked your take on her! It’s unfortunate then that the reasoning behind her bra size was likely that the creators wanted to appeal to the male-centred gaming culture.
My particular concerns are just that she’s so highly sexualized and the fact that she’s a videogame character inherently means that she is there to be played with, to be controlled and directed. Still, she’s a whole hell of a lot more empowered than, say, Princess Peach from the Mario Bros. games.
In movies and TV, I do think you see more emphasis on smaller-busted action ladies, but I know that in the video game world in general (console or PC), bigger-busted hourglass body types truly dominate. My first job was a beta tester, and I was a computer programmer in a previous life. Thus, I am a total geek and like playing video games, so I have some experience to draw from on my comments. 😀 Personally, I would only consent to being an action hero provided all the bad stuff went down when I was wearing my sports bra.
As for Angelina Jolie, in her Tomb Raider days, I would put her around a 26GG/28G, but if she had a padded bra, then perhaps she was closer to a 26G/28FF.