After reading this story about paparazzi hunting the “stars,” it seems to me that celebs aren’t innocent victims. They play to the paparazzi and they should stop whining.
Sure, it’s absolutely wrong to bang into someone’s car to get a photo of a celeb meltdown and it’s wrong to scare a baby (you have to read the story) but I think it’s difficult for the general public to be sympathetic to people who live in houses big enough for a village, eat at f-A-n-c-Y restaurants, drive cars with bars and go on extravagant trips to exotic places some of us have never even heard of.
When people look at the celebrity magazines, they want some reassurance that these so-called celebs are real. They want to know that whosiewhats actually eats or that Susie-celeb actually put out a baby or so-and-so really sits in the driver’s seat.
Here’s what Courtney Cox had to say:
It really bothers me that I bought this house in Malibu that cost a fortune, and I can’t walk into my own backyard to build a sandcastle with Coco without photographers being there,’ Cox says. ‘It’s brutal. I have to think about what I’m going to wear when I’m on the beach. They know what time you play tennis, so they wait there. And they’re relentless on my friend Jennifer.
Uh, yeah. Being homeless is brutal. So is having your leg shot off.
Drew Barrymore says she can go out in public with few problems. Here’s an excerpt of what she had to say:
Drew Barrymore says she recently went to a Hollywood club where she crossed paths with an ‘infamous famous person (who) came in with this giant entourage. The club ushered them through the kitchen. They must love it, because it caused so much more attention.’ She and her girlfriends, meanwhile, ‘just walked in through the front door. No one cared. No one noticed.’
If celebrities really wanted to shut down the paparazzi, they’d stop making a big fuss over themselves. They’d stop doing so many publicity junkets. They’d stop appearing on every single magazine cover. They’d stay off Oprah’s couch. They’d move to Idaho. They could just say “No!” They could spend more time hanging out with Coco rather than making it a point to be on every single magazine cover. Instead, we get bombarded with the star of the hour and they get incessantly stalked.
Paparazzi are simply the symptom of a bigger problem – greed – “excessive or reprehensible acquisitiveness,” according to Merriam-Webster. The acquisitiveness of more attention, more power, more money. Really, do celebs deserve the salaries they make? I know it’s economics. The more demand, the higher the value.
How can we stop the demand?
Isn’t anyone sick of the celebrity culture? ICK. I am for sure.
(Here’s a good definition of CC from Wikipedia: The fact that some people become better known than others has more to do with a desire for self-promotion or vanity than it does with personal worth or even contributions to humanity).
Sometimes when I’m standing in the checkout lane, those magazine headlines are tempting. But I’d never open it… unless, of course, my favorite musician was on the cover.
Aha! You say. But wait.
It’s not likely my favorite musician would be on the cover of a gossip mag. It’s not his style. My point is: Celebrities who don’t want to be stalked can actually groom their fans, by not over-publicizing themselves. They can communicate respect by projecting a certain amount of integrity (and I’d argue, attract a higher-quality fan). In turn, they diminish demand for some seedy photo of them, unshowered, with a no-foam, skim half-caf ducking out of Starbucks.
Hilary Swank said she doesn’t have any problems being in public.
Says Swank, “I ride the subway. I walk around the city all the time.”
I am a fan. No doubt about that. My favorite musician’s work inspires me and his music adds value to a number of people’s lives. But the minute I start caring about what he’s eating for breakfast, then I’ve crossed the line — and I need to get a life.
For more on the topic of celebrity culture, check out this site, which has a long bibliography.