'About Schmidt'

By Susan King, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer Why is it that out of shape and aging actors show no reluctance in doffing their duds while actresses who take it all off are criticized, scrutinized and even ridiculed unless they boast a pinup-perfect body? Not convinced? Just look at Kathy Bates. The 59-year-old Oscar-winning actress isn’t waif-thin like every other Hollywood starlet, and she’s clearly comfortable in her own body. But audiences – mostly male moviegoers – made great fun of her nude hot tub scene with Jack Nicholson in “About Schmidt.” Yet Hollywood routinely turns its lens on less-than-perfect men: Most recently, audiences got an up-close-and-personal look at star Jack Black’s naked Pillsbury Doughboy-behind in the new film “Margot at the Wedding.” Black’s nude scene vividly - maybe too vividly - illustrates the way actors and actresses are treated differently in Hollywood. If women have to watch the Jack Blacks of the world au natural, then movie audiences need to accept the Kathy Bateses going commando… Here’s a look at some actors who might want to hit the Stairmaster before taking off their clothes again for the big screen.
Claudette Barius / New Line Productions
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