How is Kate Winslet like a car?

In that she has substance, silly.

Page Rockwell
November 29, 2006 11:15PM (UTC)

Car lovers and "Titanic" fans may have heard the news already, but we were amused to learn that Jaguar has designed a vehicle inspired by actress Kate Winslet. Last week on "The Tonight Show," Winslet divulged that the company's new XK "was inspired by the shape of my body, which is kind of flattering."

We can't say we see the resemblance -- the car does look rather round, but in a way that recalls the characters in "Cars" more than any particular human form. Still, if Jaguar head designer Ian Callum was going to pick a female form to honor, it's nice that he chose Winslet's, since she's known for criticizing Hollywood's too-thin standards and famously slammed GQ back in 2003 for retouching a cover photo to make her look slimmer.


When we read Callum's explanation of his inspiration, though, we had to chuckle. "Kate Winslet is my ideal woman," the designer told Ananova. "She is naturally a very shapely woman ... Like a car, she has got substance, she is not just a pretty face." Now, Callum is a car designer, so comparing Kate Winslet to a car is probably a huge compliment in his book. But it's a little weird to read that a particular woman is more than the sum of her physical attributes because she has the added virtues of an automobile. And maybe it's because ships and other conveyances tend to be designated as female, but this is one of those goofy comparisons that seldom seem to come up when someone's describing a man. If there have been news stories explaining that "like a car, Denzel Washington has substance," we haven't seen them. Possibly they don't exist, because they'd seem silly.

Fortunately, Winslet seems to have seen the humor in Callum's homage. She told Jay Leno she wishes Jaguar had consulted her, not least because "the headlights are too small. They will have to go. And it needs a bar under the dashboard with pink and blue neon lights, umbrellas and pineapples. And wings, like Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. And inflatables, so it can go in water. I absolutely think I should get a free car." Aw, sounds like our kind of gal.

Page Rockwell

Page Rockwell is Salon's editorial project manager.

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