Celebrities

Celebrities Dishing Out the 411, Entertainment from Hollywood, Bollywood and Beyond!

The History of Celebrities

Celebrities get fame and public attention in the media, usually applied to a person, group of people (celebrity couple, family, etc.), or, occasionally, to animals. Celebrities have status which is often associated with wealth (commonly referred to as fame and fortune) and fame can often provide opportunities to make money.

Successful careers in sports and entertainment are commonly associated with celebrity status; political leaders often become celebrities. People may also become celebrities due to media attention for their lifestyle, wealth, or controversial actions, or for their connection to a famous person.

Throughout recorded history there are accounts of people who attracted the trappings of celebrity which would be recognized today.

Athletes in ecame famous following his murder. He was promoted by the Christian Church as a martyr and images of him and scenes from his life became widespread in just a few years. In a pattern often repeated, what started out as an explosion of popularity (often referred to with the suffix ‘mania’) turned into a long-lasting fame: pilgrimages to Canterbury Cathedral where he was killed became instantly fashionable and the fascination with his life and death have inspired plays and films.

The cult of personality (particularly in the west) can be traced back to the Romantics in the 18th Century, whose livelihood as artists and poets depended on the currency of their reputation. The establishment of cultural hot-spots became an important factor in the process of generating fame: for example, London and Paris in the 18th and 19th Centuries. Newspapers started including gossip columns and certain clubs and events became places to be seen in order to receive publicity.

The movie industry spread around the globe in the first half of the 20th Century and with it the now familiar concept of the instantly recognizable faces of its superstars. Yet, celebrity wasn’t always tied to actors in films, especially when cinema was starting out as a medium. As Paul McDonald states in The Star System: Hollywood’s Production of Popular Identities, “in the first decade of the twentieth century, American film production companies withheld the names of film performers, despite requests from audiences, fearing that public recognition would drive performers to demand higher salaries.” Public fascination went well beyond the on-screen exploits of movie stars and their private lives became headline news: for example, in Hollywood the marriages of Elizabeth Taylor and in Bollywood the affairs of Raj Kapoor in the 1950s.

The second half of the century saw television and popular music bring new forms of celebrity. The rock star and pop group epitomised by Elvis Presley and The Beatles respectively. John Lennon’s quote: “We’re more popular than Jesus now” gives an insight into both the adulation and notoriety that fame can bring. Unlike movies, television created celebrities who were not primarily actors; for example, presenters, talk show hosts and news readers. However, most of these are only famous within the regions reached by their particular broadcaster, and only a few such as Oprah Winfrey, Jerry Springer, or David Frost could be said to have broken through into a wider stardom.

The only time people dislike gossip is when you gossip about them. quote ~ Will Rogers

Celebrity Birthdays

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