Attaining a certain level of success in Hollywood involves a lot of factors lining up in just the right way, such as knowing important people, having good representation and being attractive. (We didn’t mention talent because if that really mattered then how do you explain Shia Lebouf?)
One of the perks of being a celebrity is that you have a bit more leeway in the real world that regular people do. For everyone else, going to rehab three times in a year, picking up a tranny hooker at the laundromat or having a video on YouTube drunk molesting a cheeseburger would tarnish their reputations. For celebrities however, the blow to their reputations lasts about a week until Ryan Lochte makes the news for slipping on a puddle of his drool.
Of course this doesn’t mean they’re totally off the hook because there are still a few things out there a celebrity can do to get the public to shun them completely.
Here are four sure-fire ways a celebrity can join Gwyneth Paltrow in the pool of public disdain.
I smell peasants.
1. BELIEVING THEIR OWN HYPE
People’s thirst for their favorite celebrity is so unquenchable that there’s an entire channel dedicated to reporting celebrities’ every Starbucks run and asshole bleaching appointment. A beloved celebrity has faithful fans who want to know their every move, beg for RTs on their Twitter account and anxiously wait for their next movie or public appearance.
Yet, despite all the love and adoration we give them, we also expect our celebrities to be down-to-earth and humble, which is why the public practically dry humps everything that comes out of Jennifer Lawrence’s mouth. She’s a superstar who hasn’t bought into her own hype. She’s relatable and could easily be the next door neighbor we invite over to talk shit while watching the Oscars.
But the minute the public gets an inkling that a celebrity is starting to ACT like a celebrity; doing straight-up assholey things like hiring someone to hold their umbrella, drinking 50 dollar a bottle mineral water infused with placenta or growing a beard and turning into a “serious director,” the love comes screeching to a halt and the public hateration begins because screw you, you’re not THAT great Ben Affleck.
2. CHEATING ON SOMEONE REALLY HOT
Other than Hugh Grant, who had a very public affair with a hooker named Divine Brown while he was still dating Elizabeth Hurley, not a lot of movie stars could shrug off a sex scandal like that with a boyish smile and a charming, British-y apology on a nighttime talk show.
Hugh Grant is a rare case because normally the adoring public abhors a celebrity who cheats on their significant other, BUT ONLY if they’re attractive and/or equally famous. It’s a sad fact, but Magic Johnson cheating on his wife didn’t cause as much of an uproar as when Tiger cheated on his wife. After it came out to the public that Tiger had been having glittery, stripper side-pieces while he was still married to his very attractive and very Swedish supermodel wife, Elin Nordegren, people grabbed their pitchforks and cried for Tiger’s balls (and Ambien prescription) to be cut off. Prince Charles cheating on the lovely angel that was Princess Diana with someone who resembled a catcher’s mitt in a dress was also the moment when everyone came together in their shared hatred of the monarchy and disgust at Prince Charles’ unappetizing face.
Nothing makes fans jump off a celebrity’s bandwagon like turning that bandwagon into a preacher’s pulpit. Celebrity love stems from the lavish superficiality of it all, normal folks living vicariously through them as they walk the red carpet at the Oscars or Instagram their vacation pictures from exotic locations most people can’t even pronounce let alone visit. When all that suddenly turns into a messiah power trip, the public’s starry eyes start to glaze over and roll.
Tom Cruise is a perfect example of once being at the top of the Hollywood A-List pack to being the leader of the tin-foil hat committee when his religious beliefs began to bleed into his public persona. His love for Scientology is rumored to have interfered with all his marriages (and his addiction to Grindr probably didn’t help either). And no matter how many big blockbuster movies he has, or how many starlets he sucks the life out of, his very public Scientology beliefs taints anything that he touches. Superstars mixed with religion simply makes for a sour and obnoxious tasting sacramental bread that no one wants to swallow.
4. SHITTY PERSONAL LIFE
A long, long time ago, a young boy named Chris Brown was a clean cut, up and coming singer who sang like a eunuch, danced like a young Michael Jackson and had an sweet innocent smile.
Unfortunately, that promising R& B star disappeared as soon as he got into a serious fight with his now ex-girlfriend, Rihanna. Immediately after the now infamous physical altercation they had, the Chris Brown everyone knew and loved slowly gave way to the unfortunate Chris Brown creature we know today. A bleach blonde, downgraded version who is chock full of chair throwing, #teambreezy hashtags, getting douche tattoos on his neck and getting into virtual fights with girls much smarter than him on Twitter (Spoiler: He lost). It’s a fine example that no matter how successful a celebrity’s career is; having a shitty enough personal life is enough to overshadow and ruin their image forever.
Chris Brown will always be remembered for this incident even if he came out with an album full of songs that would make you simultaneously laugh, cry then jerks you off and gives you a cigarette afterwards, it still wouldn’t be enough to make anyone forget. Sadly, it seems like old Chris Brown is never coming back and is, right now, somewhere on a California freeway, rotting in the sun among the cigarette butts, bum shit and Brendan Fraser’s hair.