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Image / Fashion

Pirelli Calendar 2020: A reimagining of ‘ballsy’ Shakespearean heroine Juliet


By Jennifer McShane
05th Aug 2019
Pirelli Calendar 2020: A reimagining of ‘ballsy’ Shakespearean heroine Juliet

The 2020 Pirelli Calendar by Paolo Roversi entitled ‘Looking for Juliet’ is a subversion of the romantic heroine.

This year, photographer Roversi recast a range of different actresses and singers, including Kristen Stewart, the Spanish singer Rosalía, Pose actress Indya Moore, and the Chinese singer Chris Lee as Juliet from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Claire Foy, Mia Goth, Yara Shahidi and Emma Watson also feature.

The subjects were invited to present the kind of Juliet they would portray; to think beyond the tragic heroine we have come to know. Stewart is, of course, a broody Juliet; Rosalía in a bright-red gown is a queen of fire and we have a serious and sombre figure in Moore.


It seems fitting. Juliet, defined by her death, was headstrong in pursuit of her want of more than the life her parents laid out for her. She sought a different life, one with Romeo. And when she saw that such a life would be no more, she decided hers would reach a tragic end. There is a beautiful strength that comes with such sadness and this is reflected in the calendar.

Shot in Paris and Verona over a week in May, Roversi said he was inspired by his own search for a muse: “I am still searching for my Juliet and I will be searching all my life. Because Juliet is a dream,” he said.

Interestingly, the calendar which had come under criticism for its depiction of the female form in previous years has distinctly moved away from more erotic imagery and focused on a more artistic approach to its theme.

Stewert echoed an appreciation for Juliet’s headstrong characteristics, calling her “ballsy” – her photos certainly represent a realistic, moody teen as she would have been in the modern world.

The full shots aren’t yet available but the below behind-the-scenes sneak peek of what we can expect:

Mia Goth. Photograph: @eijablom
Emma Watson. Photograph: @FlawlessWatson
Kristen Stewart. Photograph: @TeamKristenSite
Claire Foy. Photograph: @DailyFoy
Yara Shahidi. Photograph: @PapayaFilms

Main photograph: @eventospractico