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Chris Evans’ Leaked NSFW Nude Photo Didn’t Get Him Slut-Shamed For One Obvious Reason

Over the weekend, Chris Evans made a social media gaffe that might befall any of us — but because he’s a celebrity, and because the gaffe happened to include an NSFW nude photo, it quickly went viral. While filming video of a friendly game of Head’s Up, he left the camera rolling as his phone’s camera roll came into view — including a black and white picture that many quickly identified as a d*ck pic. Evans, who clearly hadn’t intended to upload this artsy penis shot, quickly realized his mistake and deleted the video. But Twitter moves at lightning speed, and it didn’t take long for word to spread far and wide about Evans’ accidental share. The reaction wasn’t what we’ve come to expect, though. Sure, some immediately saved the video and re-shared it (don’t do this!), but many more took to Twitter to flood the #ChrisEvans tag with wholesome content and ask fans to respect his privacy, noting his history of struggling with anxiety and depression. It’s incredible that his fanbase stepped up in this way — but at the same time, it’s jarring to see this reaction while remembering the slut-shaming faced by women like Jennifer Lawrence and Vanessa Hudgens when their own nude photos went public. In 2020, we have to wonder: will women ever get the same sex-positive empathy from their own fans?

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Before we get into the long history of women being shamed for the very existence of nude photography featuring their bodies, let’s discuss the rather lovely response Evans’ accidental move was met with. Basically, once people saw how quickly Evans deleted it, they took to social media to defend his right to privacy and ask people not to share the photo that he clearly hadn’t intended to leak to the public.

In addition to those defending the star outright, others took to Twitter to flood the results of those searching Evans’ name with content like photos of his dog Dodger, hoping they can distract people from figuring out why his name started to trend.

A long statement was also circulated on Reddit and Twitter explaining the campaign to keep Evans’ nude out of the public’s hands, and noting the disparity between the empathy and solidarity that fans showed for Evans as opposed to women whose nude photos had been leaked.

“I can’t imagine how mortified he was when he realized and I hope this is making him feel better. However, this reminded me of when female celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence got their iCloud account hacked, which resulted in nudes leaked,” the statement read. “How people blamed HER for taking nudes of HERSELF on HER own phone, and how she should expect to get hacked because she’s a celebrity.”

“I’m hoping that the change in reaction between the two celebrities is because we, as a society, are learning and doing better,” the statement continued, “and not because of double standards, but I really can’t tell.”

As women, we have plenty of reason to believe that the difference in people’s reactions has everything to do with double standards and gendered expectations. For generations, we’ve fought against the double standard that gets a guy called a stud and a woman called a slut for doing the same thing — and this reaction to Evans’ photo, as wonderful as it is, makes us wonder how much progress we’ve made after all.

Before you go, click here to see all the stars who got totally naked on camera for a role.

Richard Gere, Scarlett Johansson

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