A Brief History of Actors & Models

May 11th, 2012 Posted by Janelle comments (36)

It is a proven fact that Hollywood actors cannot resist models – Leonardo Dicaprio we’re looking at you – so it is no surprise that magazines frequently pair actors & models together in covers and in editorials. We’re not sure why magazines always go for the actor + models combo instead of say actresses and male models (c’mon someone get Scarlett Johansson and Sean O’Pry  together already) but it is a proven formula that can produce beautiful results.

Or incredibly awkward and somewhat confusing results. Lets take a look back at some of our favorite model meets actor moments – the good, the bad and the just plain weird.

2012: W Magazine  : Tom Cruise + Abbey Lee Kershaw & Edita Vilkeviciute by Mario Sorrenti

W Magazine knows how to push all the right buttons don’t they? What better way to promote the blissfully cheesy 80s jukebox musical Rock of Ages than to put its star on the cover looking like a latter day Bret Michaels? Edita Vilkeviciute and Abbey Lee Kershaw are bringing the heat, but we can’t help but feel that Cruise looks more than a little uncomfortable. Perhaps this is simply his version of bored rock star blasé, but he manages to make standing between two of the world’s most beautiful girls look like a chore; to be honest he had more chemistry with Jeremy Renner in MI:4.

2012: Vogue Espana Clive Owen & Toni Garrn by Alexi Lubomirski

Love Toni, Love Clive. Love the city of Paris. Still he looks like her dad in this. Sorry. Unless they were going for the whole “cool dad takes his glamazon daughter to France thing”, if so then it totally works.

2012: American Vogue – Michael Fassbender and Natalia Vodianova by Craig McDean

Let’s be honest they make the ultimate austere couple.

2012: American Vogue – Eddie Redmayne & Karlie Kloss by Mario Testino

Young love minus the pimples.

2011: American Vogue – Jeremy Irvine & Arizona Muse by David Sims

Ok ok. This is a blatant promo for the film War Horse, but hey it made for an amazing editorial, atmospheric, rich and a showcase for some spectacular fashion.

2010 American Vogue – Ewan McGregor & Natalia Vodianova by Peter Lindbergh

Are you starting to see how much American Vogue likes this concept?

2009: American Vogue – Morgan Freeman & Lara Stone by Bruce Weber

Lara Stone and Morgan Freeman taking a walk around New Orleans, oh to have been a fly on the wall for this shoot…

2008: American Vogue – Jon Hamm & Catherine McNeil by Mario Testino

Let Don Draper show you how it’s done. McNeil and Hamm had a great rapport in all their images, in his Vogue profile he describes her as, “adorable and sweet and so much younger than me that it is terrifying.” Age concerns aside the Testino shoot struck the right balance between glamourous fashion fantasy and celebrity profile.

2006: Vanity Fair – George Clooney & Gemma Ward by Norman Jean Roy

The old Hollywood director and his brand new muse – is it too early to label an editorial a modern classic?

2006: American Vogue – Eric Bana & Gisele Bundchen by Mario Testino

Gisele gets roped into this sort of thing a lot…

2005: American Vogue – Josh Hartnett & Gemma Ward

Can you tell that this gorgeous duo started dating after this was shot?

2004: American Vogue Daria Werbowy and Jake Gyllenhaal

Going out on a limb and saying that Jake had the most fun on this shoot.

1992: Kyle Maclachlan & Linda Evangelista for Barneys

In the years prior to the François-Henri Pinault scandal, Linda dated Twin Peaks star Kyle MacLachlan and found time to appear with him in ads for Barneys and a Meisel Vogue story. Unfortunately the couple that poses together doesn’t always stay together and they broke things off in the mid-90s.

1992: Richard Gere and Cindy Crawford by Herb Ritts

Does it get better than this? The answer is no it doesn’t. It does not get any better, Orlando Bloom and Miranda Kerr are not going to give you this kind of movie star & model chicness, bask in the glory of this cover.

And none for Leo.

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  1. Max says:

    How could you guys leave out the American Vogue editorial with Tom Welling and Maryna Linchuk by Steven Meisel? It was so magical

  2. Janelle says:

    ^ Max you’re right that is a very good one. Though I admit that I always remember Tom Welling as a model before I think of him as an actor.

  3. modelfan says:

    lmao the Leo gif is priceless! Gisele and Leo were offered to shoot a Vanity Fair cover together during their years but they both declined.

  4. Some things are best left to models says:

    Tom Cruise with eye liner is just wrong .. what a shocker .. Abbey & Edita look great.. Pity Tom doesn’t have the character to pull this cover off.

  5. Matt says:

    Did this just turn into the blog of some teenage girl or what…

  6. Janelle says:

    Why thank you for the compliment Matt.

  7. john says:

    abbey looks bad – look at her neck, creepy

  8. Kim says:

    Some great photos here! I think the cover with Tom works as far getting the attention of the consumer. But the attention is all on him, on purpose, of course. To the public at large, Abbey and Edita look like two blonde sisters that were thrown in as supporting cast members. But the concept will be a success, I think.

    As for the other pics, the models are much more prominent and distinguishable from their actor counterparts. Jake and Daria were so great in this editorial! Giselle can still be paired with any star! Clooney with Gemma – this certainly is an unforgettable modern classic! That classic Barney’s ad with Linda and Kyle was hilarious, and Linda was probably as big (if not bigger) a name as Kyle back then, and dear God, seeing that cover with Cindy and Richard is as stunning today as it was yesterday. Wow. Thanks, Janelle, for the fun post! =)

  9. Teng says:

    LOL JANELLE! Thought it was a great post, fun!

  10. Janelle says:

    Thank you! I figure it is Friday, this is just something fun to look at and get your weekend started 🙂

    Hope everyone has a very nice weekend.

  11. peabodypea says:

    Great post! Love seeing the gif as part of the post…models.com rocks

  12. Mango says:

    OMG I LOVE the Leo gif!!! Classic guys, thanks for that

  13. Madisyn says:

    Thank you Janelle 🙂

  14. stradivarius says:

    no chemistry, Edita is doing tooo much effort.Tom is like ice, like a kid.Boring image. Oh God, Gemma Ward, whata lovely editorials with her. I remember 2004 as well with Daria and Jake, Maryna and Tom that was lovely as well…My favorite Linda ahhh she is quinsential!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. stradivarius says:

    ps is Tom’s body in same situation like Demi More?

  16. Alessafan says:

    Just got back from work and that Leo gif made my day! hilarious! great post btw!

  17. Adam F says:

    Where’s Daria and Edward Norton?

  18. kayleaf says:

    “He manages to make standing between two of the world’s most beautiful girls look like a chore; to be honest he had more chemistry with Jeremy Renner in MI:4.”


    Great post!

  19. GP says:

    Didn’t know that was Tom till I read the post. I thought it was a male model. He looks great for his age.

    Josh Hartnett & Gemma Ward were the best paired. Germma is well missed.

    Loving this.

  20. IS THIS IT? models review says:

    I’d put this W cover in the “awkward and somewhat confusing results” chapter.
    Janelle: your patience sometimes is simply monumental… at least at heaven’s gate all this will certainly be taken into account… 😉

  21. MODELLOBELLO says:


  22. MODELLOBELLO says:


  23. Devorah_Rose says:

    Linda Evangelista was at her best in that Era. I remember her Bob haircut which was so chic that season.

    Definitely the Best Model.

  24. Stephen says:

    Amazing post, and the list could go on forever…

    Aaron Eckhart + Lara Stone in American Vogue February 2012 by Peter Lindbergh.

    John Hawkes + Karen Elson in American Vogue October 2011 by Peter Lindbergh

    Sam Riley + Natalia Vodianova in American Vogue September 2011 by Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott.

    Alexander Skarsgard + Lara Stone & Frida Gustavsson in American Vogue July 2011 by Peter Lindbergh.

    Max Irons, Matthew Gray Gubler, Dave Franco + Natalia Vodianova in American Vogue May 2011 by Bruce Webber.

    David Strathairn + Daria Werbowy in American Vogue January 2011 by Peter Lindbergh.

    Eddie Redmayne + Frida Gustavsson in American Vogue November 2010 by Patrick Demarchelier.

    Jeremy Renner + Lara Stone in American Vogue October 2010 by Steven Klein.

    Sam Worthington + Raquel Zimmermann in American Vogue January 2012 by Norman Jean Roy.

    Andrew Garfield + Lily Cole in American Vogue December 2009 by Annie Leibovitz.

    Tom Sturridge + Karlie Kloss in American Vogue November 2009 by Mario Testino.

    Pierce Brosnan + Daria Werbowy in American Vogue June 2008 by Mario Testino.

    Channing Tatum + Caroline Trentini in American Vogue March 2008 by Steven Klein.

    Ben Stiller + Jacquetta Wheeler, Stella Tennant, Karolina Kurkova, Oluchi Onweagba & Ai Tominaga in American Vogue October 2001 by Annie Leibovitz.

  25. Sam Dauphin says:

    The one with Cindy Crawford and Richard Gere is the best. Straight gorgeous.


  26. Alex says:

    what the hell with W Magazine?… seriously that is just awful!!

    Very disappointing, with such name like Tom, they could do something great.

    Sad really!

  27. kristen74 says:

    Tom and Black nail-polish!!!! What????????? No!
    cover is Trash and my life is crash! Now i need time to recover!

  28. anney says:

    is true tom looks uncomfortable but he looks very hot for his age…you miss lara stone,frida gustavsson and alexander skarsgard

  29. Carla says:

    Yes its W is not cool.

  30. Nádia says:

    I don’t like the W cover, it’s just too cheesy for my taste.
    I actually think most of these photos seemed out of place! But some work awesome, like gemma’s one! I remember seeing it back at 2005 and thought wow! 😉

    GIVEAWAY – Romwe $80 voucher + sunnies
    My Fashion Insider

  31. carola says:

    Great compilation. And my only thought is…please bring Gemma Ward back!!

  32. stylebaby2013 says:

    cool article:)

  33. Fanny says:

    How tall is Tom Cruise? Obviously taller than Abbey and Edita. Hmmmmm…

  34. Ale says:

    Hmm where is Tom Welling and Maryna Linchuk by Steven Meisel?? that Vogue editorial was beautiful!!

  35. William Fleming says:

    Everything you kindle send is just gorgeous.!!!
    Thank you very much ans congratulation to the models and artists-fotographers.

  36. Bruce Edwin says:

    Yes good blog… but big dis on Leo-ouch.. What about Madonna and Sean Penn?

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