Jamie Lee Curtis: People lost their minds that I went topless at 50

At the AARP awards over the weekend, Jamie Lee Curtis was acknowledged with the Career Achievement Award. The awards show is called Movies for Grownups Awards, btw, which I just love. I love everything about AARP and how they cheekily play with their over 50 image these days. Their marketing team deserves a medal.

Back to Jamie, right before the awards, Jamie reflected on the topless cover she shot for the AARP 2008 May/June issue. Jamie was 50 at the time and according to La Curtis, “people lost their MINDS.” Since Jamie had famously appeared topless in Trading Places when she was 24 years old, what was the big deal? Apparently that a 50-year-old woman dared to present herself as a sexual being.

On Saturday night, actress Jamie Lee Curtis was honored with the Career Achievement Award from AARP The Magazine. But it’s not the first time the publication — which shines a spotlight on people aged 50 and older — has shown the star some love.

In an Instagram post shared ahead of the magazine’s annual Movies for Grownups Awards, Curtis, 64, reflected on appearing topless on the cover of its May/June 2008 issue. Then 50, the Halloween star posed naked in a swimming pool for the Andrew Eccles-lensed shoot, causing quite a stir.

“People lost their MINDS that I was TOPLESS!” Curtis, who just scored for her first Oscar nomination for her supporting turn in Everything Everywhere All at Once, shared. “A perfect statement about how weird people are about older people having any sexuality whatsoever.”

[From Yahoo!]

I don’t think Jamie is creating a controversy here. I think her age and the magazine being AARP are exactly why people had such a problem with her being topless on it. This may be a US thing, but there really does seem to be an expected expiration date on sexuality in this country. We simply aren’t supposed to acknowledge that side of us past a point. With the freedoms that come with age and finally getting a handle on our hormones and bodies? Screw that.

I don’t know if I agree with Jamie about people being weird with all older people having sexuality. If a fit, older male appeared topless on AARP I suspect he’d be praised because we don’t censor shirtless men at any age. Maybe people wouldn’t openly lust after him like they would a 25-year-old man, but they wouldn’t lose their minds like they did when Jamie did it.

This is Jamie with AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins at the event

Photo credit: Getty for AARP

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

17 Responses to “Jamie Lee Curtis: People lost their minds that I went topless at 50”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. Lightpurple says:

    Not only is she aging beautifully, she is embracing aging gloriously. More power to her.

  2. Mcmmom says:

    I’m going to channel JLC today in all my activities. She seems to have a great attitude about pretty much everything.

    I might as well join AARP. I’m 51. It’s time, especially if they have a sense of humor about middle age.

    • North of Boston says:

      A friend of mine used to joke about how if there was some kind of Parent Trap body switch and JLC somehow found herself in friend’s body, life, what would she do differently?

      It’s a great way to look at yourself, circumstances with fresh eyes. #1 act like you don’t give a fig about what someone else thinks RE what you wear, what you do. #2 take better care of your body as a start. Would JLC eat that brownie? Most of the time, probably no … but some days, if it was a really good brownie? Hell yes!

  3. Katie Beanstalk says:

    JLC was on TV in Australia. She has such a great sense of humour.

  4. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    There are a ton of boomers. And their children are moving right on in with every tic. She knows exactly what to say and when to say it. And aging roles will widen. They have to or they’ll lose millions lol.

    • AlpineWitch says:

      I think there are a several roles with actresses in the 40-50 age range now but… producers still pretend they look like women in their 30ies…

      So it’s not just about more roles but a change in attitude too, and I am not holding my breath for the latter…

  5. AlpineWitch says:

    I don’t think it’s just the USA…

    A couple of years ago I was strolling with my hubby on an Italian beach and a lady (in her 50ies, likely) was sunbathing topless, a bunch of women in their 20ies, coming in the opposite direction and wearing tiny bikinis commented “cover yourself, old h*” and this was in public so imagine what people think in private 😱

    Love JLC and I hope to embrace aging as she does, I’m not doing that successfully at present.

    • Same says:

      probably Americans — Europeans tend to not notice because it is normal for all ages and shapes. It is always the American Karens in Mexico too wanting someone to ‘think of the children’ on the beach– it’s called European sunbathing for a reason!

      • BothSidesNow says:

        It’s Americans, as we were in either Costa Rica or the DR and I was sunbathing topless at 54/5 and my daughter who was 30 at the time told me to cover up. My husband and I have visited the Caribbean from the late ‘90’s and it’s natural and I would go topless as well. I didn’t care as long as I had sunscreen on 70SPF.

        I don’t understand the difference. A man is accepted sans a shirt but a woman is not? I don’t understand the hypocrisy and/or the misogyny.

      • AlpineWitch says:

        The 2 young ladies were speaking Italian.

  6. outoftheshadows says:

    As if being topless in a swimming pool is a sexual act! It’s totally bizarre how Americans sexualize every nude body.

    JLC is wonderful and brave for all sorts of reasons, and I wish her a very long and healthy life. As a 48 year old I think this kind of response to her body was ridiculous. She’s amazing. Full stop.

  7. SophieJara says:

    I thought it was a *topless* topless photo shoot and now I’m a little sad. People are that mad over shoulders??

    • Turtledove says:

      I’m confused too. She could be in a strapless swimsuit in that pic. I mean, I believe that she isn’t wearing a top as she says, just saying there isn’t anything in that pic to make a single bit of fuss about. Are 50+ women really that offensive? Good lord.

  8. MissMarirose says:

    I might be confused. Is that cover photo the one she is talking about? Because I wouldn’t call shoulder-baring topless. Or is there another photo where she was visibly topless, like when she posed for another magazine without filters/photoshop? I remember her doing several photo shoots to show that women in their 50s were still hot/amazing/sexual. It was great.

    Anyway, she’s always seemed to have this IDGAF attitude and that’s part of what makes her wonderful. I really love the positive energy she’s been giving for her EEAAO castmates. It’s so refreshing given the Karening of Hollywood that’s otherwise been making headlines this Oscar season.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      I know! Oh no, JLC is showing her shoulders!! All of these people causing a fuss when it’s none of their business. Maybe if these people would go topless and not GAF, they would loosen up and everyone get on board too.

      Why is it Americans that are always freaking out about nudity??

    • Julesser says:


  9. smlstrs says:

    I can only hope my skin looks that good in a few years! I’m with Samantha Jones on this – take photos while you look and feel fabulous as long as that is FOR YOU and don’t let other people be the judge here.