A former winner of the television show Holland's Next Top Model has won a lawsuit against Elite Model Management after she was dropped for having hips the agency said were too big.
The Amsterdam District Court has ruled that Ananda Marchildon, now 25, was entitled to the main prize she won in the 2008 production of the show, a three-year contract worth 75,000 euros ($93,500), the Associated Press reported.
Marchildon argued she was dismissed after only 10,000 euros worth of work because she didn't lose enough weight to please the agency.
The court ruled that Elite — which the Daily Beast referred to as the most powerful agency in the business — must pay her the remaining 65,000 euros.
According to the ruling, though Marchildon had gained weight since getting the contract, she had a hip measurement of 92 centimeters (about 36.2 inches) when she won.
The court said Elite could not demand that she go down to 90 centimeters (about 35.4 inches) which at a U.S. size 2, is far smaller than the average woman's but not unusual in the modeling world.
The Daily Beast wrote that a spokesman from Elite Models had allegedly said that because of her "fat ass," she was unfit for modeling.
She was reportedly told she would look bottom heavy on runways and wouldn't squeeze into designers' clothes.
Marchildon, who been earning her living as a cabinetmaker since Elite dropped her, told the Daily Beast: "I was at work when I got the call from my lawyer who told me, 'You got it!' I just went: 'Yeah!'"
She felt relieved that: After almost two years of struggling. I was finally proven right. A huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders."
She said she had starved herself and exercised relentlessly to try to lose the required two centimeters, but had been unable.
A spokeswoman for Elite, Rita Camelli said the agency was considering its options.
"Of course we are pretty disappointed' in the ruling, said Milan-based Camelli. "We felt we were in the right."
Elite's criticisms didn't stop Marchildon going back to modeling work, with underwear maker Sloggi hiring her for a recent photo shoot.
The Globe and Mail quoted Sloggi brand marketing manager Maartje van Geel as saying the company jumped at the chance to work with Marchildon after learning about her case on a Dutch talk show. "We think Ananda is a beautiful woman with a butt that most Dutch women would dream of having," she said