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AMSTERDAM — A former winner of the television show “Holland’s Next Top Model” has won a lawsuit against Elite Model Management after she was dropped for having hips the agency considered too large.
Ananda Marchildon, now 25, is entitled to the prize she won in the 2008 production of the show, a three-year contract worth euro75,000 ($98,500), the Amsterdam District Court ruled Wednesday.
“I’m proud to be able to show that just because a modeling agency wants that, it doesn’t mean that if you have a bigger size you’re done for,” she told the Associated Press in an interview. “You’re still a person and you can be as beautiful as you want and it doesn’t come down to centimeters, it’s how you are and how you portray yourself.”
Marchildon argued she was dismissed after only euro10,000 ($13,000) worth of work, because she didn’t lose enough weight to please the agency.
According to the written ruling, though she gained weight after winning, she had a hip measurement of 92 centimeters (about 36.2 inches) when she won, and Elite could not demand that she go down to 90 centimeters – about 35.4 inches. That is far smaller than the average woman’s hips, but not unusual in the modeling world.
The fashion industry has often faced criticism for creating unrealistic expectations about women’s bodies and forcing models to undergo harmful diets.
“I’m proud to be a good role model, that’s how I see it, for young girls. If you can’t be a model for high fashion, you’re still beautiful,” Marchildon said.
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