Shakespeare’s Juliet takes on 21st century in Pirelli calendar

Reuters Italy Dec 04, 2019, 10.18 AM(IST)

Claire Foy, alongside actors Mia Goth, Yara Shahidi walked the carpet at the stunning Philharmonic Theatre Photograph:( Reuters )

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Kristen Stewart, Claire Foy, Emma Watson as well as transgender model and actor Indya Moore were pictured by Italian photographer Paolo Roversi for the "Looking for Juliet" calendar, giving a modern-day spin on the timeless leading lady, who they say is just as relevant now as in the Shakespearean era.

Hollywood stars have taken on the prestigious role of the heroine in William Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet' for the 2020 Pirelli calendar, which launched on Tuesday (December 3) in Verona, home of literature's most famous star-crossed lovers.

Kristen Stewart, Claire Foy, Emma Watson as well as transgender model and actor Indya Moore were pictured by Italian photographer Paolo Roversi for the "Looking for Juliet" calendar, giving a modern-day spin on the timeless leading lady, who they say is just as relevant now as in the Shakespearean era.

Foy, alongside young actors Mia Goth, Yara Shahidi and Roversi's daughter Stella walked the carpet at the stunning Philharmonic Theatre on Tuesday, just 850 metres away from Juliet's balcony.

Nineteen-year-old U.S. actor Shahidi, who is also a model and activist, said Juliet's resilient spirit was an inspiration for girls her age.

"For me, Juliet really parallels so many of the young people of my generation," she told Reuters.

"Whether it's people that are environmental activists, whether it is people fighting for equity and equality, that kind of passion that Juliet has, and almost unreasonable sense of purpose is what we actually need to keep going."

First released in the 1960s, the Pirelli calendar, which has a limited publication run and is gifted to clients of the Italian tyre maker, has moved away from scantily-dressed models to more artistic themes in recent years.

"Society is changing very, very fast and the Pirelli calendar too is changing," Roversi told Reuters.

"It couldn't stay the same since 30 years (ago) ... it is interesting to see how the Pirelli calendar is following the evolution of society and photography, of the aesthetic, of the idea of beauty of women," he said.

Whoopi Goldberg, 64, who was hosting the launch in Verona, said "Looking for Juliet" was relatable for people of all ages - just like the timeless love tragedy.

"I think every woman who sees it will recognise that no matter how old you are, you are always Juliet," Goldberg, who was pictured in the 2018 Pirelli calendar, said.

The calendar is accompanied by a short film in which Roversi portrays a movie director looking to cast his Juliet.

As well as Watson, Stewart and Moore, this year's edition also features Chinese singer Chris Lee, Spanish singer Rosalia and Roversi's daughter, artist Stella Roversi.