Is Hollywood Really Dead?

28 Sep

While tidying up the shelves in work, a song came on by Michael Buble. Not being a massive fan, I’d never really properly listened to the lyrics of any of his songs (except singing along in my very talented, beautiful voice of course) but after hearing a few of them I began to think.

The title is quite deliberating itself; Hollywood is dead. This got me thinking. Hollywood certainly isn’t what it used to be; in fact popular culture is the same but times have changed.  I’m going to take some liberty in this article and talk not just about Hollywood but also music stars and other stars of entertainment.

When The Beatles became famous, they were thought of as rebellious because they had longer hair, whereas rebellion now a days is Miley Cyrus rubbing herself with a foam finger and Lady Gaga dancing around in a thong. One could argue that these things, although they do sell the music, take the attention away from the music itself. Back in the sixties, the Beatles were rebellious initially because they played rock n’ roll music, not because of their shenanigans.

With social media and paparazzi at an all time high, the normal things discussed are who was seen together, how thin/fat someone is; basically gossip. For example, most of the press on Justin Bieber consists of him being late for concerts or of him spitting on his fans. Not that these aren’t issues and events that need to be discussed, but the focus shifts from that of their music. While you can argue that this is happening more and more in recent times, back in the 80’s the only real entertainment news I can find is Ozzy biting the head off a bat. In conclusion, any big gossip in the entertainment world is particularly difficult to find. However most of my research is done online and this got me thinking that as the Internet is a fairly recent phenomenon then this may be the reason that gossip about celebrities has gotten so high and become normal. Indeed some entertainment gossip features are seen on the news.

While watching The Big Reunion, many of the cast spoke about their depression and the pressures of fame, as well as their loss of control due to it. However this may not be a new thing – Marilyn Monroe is famous for her feelings of being trapped as seen in some of these quotes: “It’s often just enough to be with someone. I don’t need to touch them. Not even talk. A feeling passes between you both. You’re not alone.” and “A career is wonderful, but you can’t curl up with it on a cold night.” Indeed the magnitude and pressure of fame have sometimes thought to have pushed some celebrities to suicide, such as Marilyn Monroe from an overdose of barbiturates or Heath Ledger from prescription drug intoxication, while both may not be suicide, the result of the medication they were taking may be from the stresses and pressures of celebrity life and from the paparazzi and gossip. Indeed the gossip and paparazzi may have gotten a lot worse in recent years but these two celebrities were many decades apart, meaning that life for celebrities was also hard back then and wasn’t always the glitz and the glamour.

Hollywood; the big sign on the side the hills of Los Angeles, California promotes the height and Godly approach that Hollywood is meant to suggest but has this all been lost now? There are still some ‘stars’ among the celebrities who have been working for many years like Johnny Depp or George Clooney but celebrities who are famous for being famous may change this. The glamour hasn’t gone from Hollywood, we still have the red carpets, awards shows and sparkly dresses but the metaphorical glamour of being a celebrity in Hollywood, or that of popular culture, may truly have disappeared.

About the writer: Becky has just finished a degree in English and Creative Writing and is very happy with her 2:1. She is friendly, bubbly and just so happens to be the co-creator of Yellow Bunting. She hopes you enjoy it and that you get involved!

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