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How big are Andy Roddick’s bicepts? Not as big as they appeared on the cover of American Media-owned Men’s Fitness magazine. At least that’s what the tennis star said recently on his own blog. It appears to be another case of a magazine retouching a cover image to make a celeb appear more attractive. The celebrity-gossip website TMZ also reports that a recent US magazine cover of a buff Janet Jackson was also the product of the digital darkroom. In other celebrity news, a shot of Angelina Jolie on In Touch magazine was retouched to remove prominent veins in her forearm. See the entire breaking story here.

Is anyone really surprised by this news? At this point, do we not all think that every celebrity on every cover of every magazine has been retouched to some extent? At least Andy Roddick found it embarrassing. But he’s an athlete, not a movie star. Most celebrities won’t even allow a photograph to be released without approving the retouching that’s been done.

At any rate, this kind of manipulation needs to be seen in context. A news magazine cover shot of an actual event of notable person (O.J. Simpson, for instance) should not be manipulated. The cover of a celebrity magazine is more akin to a movie poster–it’s a manufactured image meant to sell.
–David Schonauer