Ananda Marchildon and More Models Fired for Being Too Big (PHOTOS)

Dutch ‘Next Top Model’ Ananda Marchildon and more models who said they were fired because of their size.

Photograph by Otto van den Toorn

Photograph by Otto van den Toorn

Ananda Marchildon, the season four winner of the Netherlands’ Next Top Model, is firing back at the agency that she claims denied her the show’s full winnings because they said her hips were too wide. From Filippa Hamilton to Lizzie Miller, see more models—and a couple of ballerinas—who said they were fired or couldn’t get work because of their size.

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Alexandra Michael

At Paris Fashion Week in 2008, Texas native Michael was told by casting agents that her legs were too plump to walk the runways there, her mother The Wall Street Journal. The 5-foot-9 17-year-old had a 23-inch waist and had hovered around 100 pounds after starting out three years earlier weighing 130 pounds. The critique came after Michael realized she had been maintaining a too-thin figure, she said in a 2008 interview with Today. “My kind of wakeup call was [when] I ran my fingers through my hair and when I took my hand away, there was a dry, brittle clump of hair in my hand.”

Jaco Klamer, Hollandse Hoogte / Redux

Ananda Marchildon

Marchildon said she received just a tenth of the contract payout that she was promised for winning the Netherlands’ Next Top Model after Elite Model Management told her that her hips that were too wide. Marchildon won the competition in 2008 at the age of 21 and is coming forward after only two years of working with the agency. She and her lawyer claim Elite told Marchildon, “Although she has a nice face, she has a fat arse” and that “she never had it in her to become a top model because she was unsuitable for catwalk work.” Marchildon is seeking about $86,000, saying she was paid about $13,000 of the $99,000 she won.

Randy Brooke, WireImage / Getty Images

Filippa Hamilton

Former Ralph Lauren model Filippa Hamilton is perhaps the best-known case of a model claiming she was let go due to a weight problem. In 2010, Hamilton came forward, telling the New York Daily News: “[Ralph Lauren] fired me because they said I was overweight and I couldn’t fit in their clothes anymore.” Hamilton only came forward after it was revealed that her body was significantly retouched in an advertisement in Japan. “The image in question was mistakenly released and used in a department store in Japan and was not the approved image which ran in the U.S. We take full responsibility,” Ralph Lauren said. And the company didn’t back down on letting Hamilton go, saying only that it fired her “as a result of her inability to meet the obligations under her contract with us.”

Agencia el Universal / Newscom

Lizzie Miller

Even plus-size models have to deal with pressure to stay the right size. Such was the case for Miller, a size 12-14 model who couldn’t get work in the plus-size industry because most plus-size models are in the size eight-to-10 range. Miller sparked a controversy when Glamour ran a nude photo of her in 2009 that got an overwhelming fan response in support of readers wanting to see more “pictures of normal women,” a Glamour editor said. After the photo ran, however, Miller said she got more work thanks to the publicity.

AFP / Getty Images

Anastasia Volochkova

Much like modeling, the ballet world is full of pressure to stay thin. In 2009, the Russian dancer Anastasia Volochkova was reportedly fired from the world-renowned Bolshoi company because “[the company] couldn’t find partners for her after male dancers complained she was too tall and fat to lift.” Volochkova, who has since joined Russia’s opposition to Vladimir Putin, was 5-foot-7 and 109 pounds.