Stars' Complaint about Fame Rings Hollow
Knott, Tom, The Washington Times (Washington, DC)
Tom Cruise is one of the many Hollywood types attacking the media since Princess Diana's death.
Mr. Cruise made his comments to CNN on the night of the accident. Mr. Cruise, as so many others after him, chastised the paparazzi and the tabloid press. By now, you know the spiel.
There is only one small problem with the rising tide of indignation sweeping Hollywood. Mr. Cruise and his kind command outrageous sums of money only because of their celebrity. Without their fame, they are the nobody down the street. They can't open a blockbuster movie without their fame. They can't open a restaurant or start a line of clothing or kick off a charity event. Their fame is their power.
Their fame is so essential to their being that there is an industry devoted it. There are agents, publicists and marketing strategists whose job it is to craft and enlarge the public image of their clients. These jobs pay very well, particularly if the client, like Mr. Cruise, is a megastar.
Unfortunately for Mr. Cruise and his kind, fame is not a water faucet that can be turned on or off, depending on your needs. You can't pose for the paparazzi when you have a big movie out and then expect the lens hounds to go away when you no longer need them. You can't expect the mainstream press to ignore your comings and goings after you have used the vehicle repeatedly to push your various agendas. "I am horrified and disgusted, but I knew it would happen in the end," Sylvester Stallone said of Diana's death.
Ironically, Mr. Stallone, as he was blasting the press, was in Melbourne, Australia, using the press to help hype the opening of his latest Planet Hollywood restaurant.
Most people are not in a position to have their business ventures aided by the press. Most people have to pay newspapers in order to publicize their business ventures. It is called advertising.
Mr. Stallone not only was granted free advertising in Melbourne but a platform that befits a person of his stature. Now, please, back off. No more pictures. Let Mr. Stallone be the private person he so desperately wants to be.
This is the mantra of so many stars in Hollywood. …