Margot Robbie’s acting profile has steadily risen over the past few years. During that time, she’s played a wide range of roles, playing a DC member of the Suicide Squad, a problematic U.S. Olympian, Jordan Belfort’s lover in The Wolf of Wall Street, famous Tarzan character Jane Clayton, and character naked in a bathtub. in The Grand Court. She recently played a stripper in Terminal, and now she’s talking about nudity and sexual power in movies, and how she feels about nudity in particular roles. As she’s been naked on film before, she doesn’t object, but she says there has to be motivation and self-awareness for the scenes to work. According to Robby:
If I see it in a character who uses it as a weapon, or a tool, or does so intentionally. Like in Wolf of Wall Street, she wears a short dress for a reason. She knows that’s her motto. She will have hers. It gives power. When it’s used in a way where there isn’t that self-awareness, then you feel like you’re taking advantage of it. And then I don’t really vibrate with that.
In The Wolf of Wall Street, Margot Robbie’s character is in various states of undress throughout the film. Margot Robbie’s character, Naomi –spoilers!– begins as the other woman. However, after Jordan Belfort’s wife finds out about the relationship, she becomes his wife. Throughout part of the film, there’s always a sense that if she’s going to keep the decadent lifestyle going, she has to keep Belfort happy, and it shows very early on screen. Eventually, the character no longer needs to use their sexual merchandise and decides to divorce. In previous interviews, Margot Robbie revealed that she had the option of not being fully nude for Wolf of Wall Street, but she chose to portray Naomi in a way that left her vulnerable. Robbie would also strip naked in a bathtub for a small role in The Big Short.
Although she isn’t naked in Terminal, her sexuality is still a commodity in the film, but this time around Margot Robbie had a say in what the character made of it. She also spoke with Yahoo about the pitfalls of being told what to do in Hollywood, especially when she was just starting out as an actress.
I think it’s also something that comes with age. Even if I wasn’t doing the production stuff, I would have started having those kinds of opinions, or expressing those opinions anyway. Just because I’m starting to get to the age of working on films pretty consistently for ten years. I have an opinion, and I am ready to express it. But in the beginning, to be honest, you’re so grateful to even have a job that you don’t want to rock the boat sometimes.
In Terminal, it’s clear that Margot Robbie could be more vocal about her role. She was the film’s producer, and she’s spent the past few years gaining her own footing in the industry through producer roles, including a Harley Quinn project. If there is more screen nudity in the future, it will likely be on its own terms.