Before we get to today’s chat, don’t forget to check out Katy Perry’s exclusive webcast concert tomorrow at 8 PM (ET). She’ll also be a guest on Letterman, and it’s all in celebration of her new record Teenage Dream which we can get to tomorrow as well. More on Katy later but I wanted to give you a heads up because the web concert’s going to be cool.
So Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer got married this weekend. The former precocious Oscar winner (if you’re wondering: a) she was 11, b) it was for The Piano and c) nope, she wasn’t the youngest – that was Tatum O’Neal who won for Paper Moon twenty years prior) and the dreamy brooding English actor who plays a dreamy brooding Southern vampire tied the knot in Malibu. They’re costars on True Blood, the hit vampire TV series (I guess nowadays one has to say the other hit vampire TV series) and the word is they began dating long before going public. With costars it’s ultra risky because if they happen to break up in the middle of filming, it can equal the largest migraine in North America for everyone else working on the project. But apparently this one stuck, they finally went public and now they’ve gone and made it legal. She’s 28 and he’s 40, with two kids from prior relationships. So let’s look at celebrity couples in general. To which enough ink has been devoted to keep tabloids alive for decades. How come we care so much? From the time of Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton’s tempestuous union straight through to the reportedly coupled stars of Twilight today, we’ve long been obsessed with celebrity romance. But precisely why is this a phenomenon – and such a uniquely American one at that? I remember being told when I was younger that the reason we loved entertainment stars’ pairings was that we had no real monarchy like other countries do, and that no other profession (besides sports) creates the sort of rabid devotion from fans that TV and movies do. They’re our royalty. Because when you have a star with tremendous wattage and the capacity to alter peoples’ blood pressure with a wink or a smile, and you couple that person with someone else who’s equally glamorous/talented/eye-catching, you produce the perfect storm of buzzy goodness. Now at the other end of the spectrum we have the 1950’s, when movie studios frequently arranged Hollywood marriages in order to a) bolster someone’s career by attaching them to a better-known star, b) hide the fact that a person was gay or c) both. Even today, there’s rarely a high profile celebrity romance or marriage that doesn’t get picked apart by gossip columnists, alleging this or suspecting that. And why do celebrities so frequently marry within their own species? Is it because they shop at the same celebrity stores, attend the same celebrity art openings, and encounter each other at celebrity car dealerships? Perhaps, but I think there’s more to it than that. Having met a few people who work in TV and film, I can honestly say that their lives, while rewarding and often obscenely lucrative, are frequently devoid of personal freedom and time away from it all. Many of them have terrible hours, work nonstop and live under the watchful and very critical eye of a capricious industry that could spit them out at any time. They’re nervous, tired, suspicious of everyone whom they haven’t known since adolescence, and lots of them spend an inordinate amount of time trying to return to their birth weight. Thus it’s often difficult for them to find a mate who can understand/respect/stand them during the eleven minutes a day when no one else is looking. And who better to understand these it’s-actually-tough-but-no-one-would-believe-me lives? Other celebrities. They can handle the hours and the weirdness. Does the fact that they’re stars in the first place with impossible egos, dreadful tempers, and the hourly potential to ruin it all with vice and infidelity account for their frequent suuuuper-messy breakups? Absolutely. Which is why we care. Because who doesn’t love a spectacle? Who isn’t fascinated by the idea of these lives – which seem so much more exciting than our own – getting tangled up with other good-looking & exciting messes? (I realize there are millions of people who aren’t fascinated, but since you’re reading this blog in the first place, you’re probably pretty well-versed in this biz). So now, let’s have you weigh in on some celebrity pairings. Voice your choice in today’s featured poll and let us know which of these married celebrity couples is your favorite:
1) Will & Jada Pinkett Smith
2) Kevin Bacon & Kyra Sedgewick
3) Javier Bardem & Penelope Cruz
4) David Beckham & Victoria Beckham