For the past few years now, the annual Pirelli Calendar has been trying to shed its reputation of celebrating only the most svelte model and actress bodies on earth, with sultry images of models in various sexy stages of undress.
In 2016, the calendar was about showcasing strong and interesting women like Serena Williams, Ava DuVernay, Yoko Ono and Fran Lebowitz. In 2017, the calendar used images of women like Julianne Moore and Lupita Nyong’o that hadn’t been retouched.
Now for 2018, the calendar will be featuring an all-star, all-black cast featuring notable figures like RuPaul, Naomi Campbell, model Adwoa Aboah, Lupita Nyong’o, Djimon Hounsou, Diddy, albino model Thando Hopa, model Duckie Thot and Whoopi Goldberg, all shot by the hugely inventive photographer Tim Walker.
Rather appropriately for the photoshoot then, Walker has cast all of these people as characters in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. In behind-the-scenes images, you can see model Duckie Thot playing Alice.
And actor Djimon Hounsou as the King of Hearts alongside RuPaul, playing the Queen of Hearts.
And Naomi Campbell and Diddy as the Royal Beheaders, naturally.
And Lupita Nyong’o as the Dormouse.
And model Slick Woods as the Mad Hatter.
Other cast members include Adut Akech, Alpha Dia, King Owusu, Lil Yachty, Sasha Lane, Wilson Oryema and Zoe Bedeaux.
It should be noted too that this shoot was styled by Edward Enninful, the newly appointed editor in chief of British Vogue who’s been a champion of diversity in fashion for decades now.
“Given the state of the world we live in, sometimes I think we all feel like we’ve fallen down the rabbit hole,” Enninful told the New York Times. “For me, a retelling of ‘Alice’ for the modern world was a perfect project, particularly once the cast fell into place.”
Looking at these images, it’s safe to say that the Pirelli Calendar has never been so stunning, despite the fact that no one is in any stage of undress.
We expect to see the official calendar images in the late fall. You can see all the behind the scenes imagery here.