‘The Legend Of Tarzan’ Star Margot Robbie: ‘We’re Objectifying Alex And His Wonderful Torso’

The Legend of Tarzan brings attention to the male form, as lead Alexander Skarsgard swings amid the trees dressed only in his loincloth, and nothing could be better, says Skarsgard’s co-star, Margot Robbie.

In the past, Ms. Robbie has taken a stand against roles in which she might be cast as a clueless bimbo and only chosen for her beauty or her body measurements. However, she doesn’t mind getting naked for the right role, which means Robbie looks out for a character with substance and purpose. Now, Margot gets to keep her top on and watch the male star — Alexander, in this case — bare his chest for the sake of The Legend of Tarzan’s sex appeal.

Margot Robbie Is Pleased To See Alexander Skarsgard Objectified

While Margot takes her professional image seriously, she admits she’s also not above finding humor in the issues of sexism and ageism. Particularly, Robbie refers to that segment of our society which finds a reason for offense in every event, regardless of how innocent the intention. While the Legend of Tarzan actress believes ageism and sexism are serious issues, Margot can’t help but laugh at critics of sexism, those who claim every scene of nudity contributes to the objectification of human beings.

“Maybe they will find sexism in Alexander having his shirt off so much when I don’t,” Ms. Robbie said. “That’s it. We’re objectifying Alex and his wonderful torso.”

On a more serious note, Margot spoke about the affects of age on an actor’s Hollywood career, remarking that her Suicide Squad co-star Will Smith is much younger looking than his actual age. As a result, she says Smith can play much younger men, which opens up greater opportunities. While Margot admits that she also doesn’t look her age, she says she’s young enough that playing a younger character would mean playing a 16-year-old girl, which is something Robbie couldn’t believably do.

“Maybe I’ll make a fuss over it when I’m in my forties and some 20-year-old actress is getting all the good roles.”

The Legend Of Tarzan Gave Margot Robbie A Chance To Bring Intelligence To The Jungle

For those familiar with the Edgar Rice Burroughs, or even for fans of the older Tarzan films, there’s no arguing that Jane is of little value to the stories than that of the damsel in distress who needs to be rescued by Tarzan over and over again. The books were written long before women were granted equal rights and certainly before women’s lib really had long-lasting effects on society, so it’s understandable that the books would seem antiquated by today’s standards. Be that as it may, Margot Robbie wasn’t content to play the character as she had been written. For The Legend of Tarzan, Ms. Robbie wanted an updated story.

“For the purpose of the plot, I needed to be held captive and used for bait for Christoph Waltz’s villain to get his hands on Tarzan,” said Robbie. “But (director) David Yates and I spoke at length that even when she is tied up or shackled or being held captive, she’s always going to be fighting her way out of it — not just physically, but also with these mind games going on between (Jane and Waltz’s Captain Rom).”

While Margot is now in a position to choose the roles she takes on, awaiting offers to play strong and driven female characters, that hasn’t always been the case. The Legend of Tarzan actress says that there was a time, prior to her success with The Wolf of Wall Street (2013), when she had to take any role she could get, just like any other aspiring performer. Robbie admits everyone must pay their dues, but now that success has come her way, Margot says she looks for quality roles and won’t lower her standards again.

“I have the luxury of saying no to things because I’m going to wait for the role that’s more complex,” said The Legend of Tarzan’s Margot Robbie.

The Legend of Tarzan opens in theaters on July 1.

[Image by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images]