I wanna be a star!
If you are a precocious kid who likes attention, you might fantasize about living your life in the spotlight of Hollywood. I remember watching “Star Search” and thinking to myself… “I could do that!” If only I could sing, act, dance whatever. But I had the right disposition – despite lacking the talent.
We are encouraged to think that the lifestyle of fame is full of glamour, money, and endless good times. Yet the quest for mass appeal is also predicated on how you are perceived by others- thus harnessing yourself esteem directly to public opinion. It may be really fun to be a mega celebrity like Bradley Cooper when everyone loves Bradley Cooper. But what happens when everyone starts to think Bradley Cooper is a douche?
It is really hard to be an artist and not care what your audience thinks. People perform for themselves, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t intimately connected to how they are received. When you put yourself out there, you are vulnerable. You expose your inner most sensitive parts, and it is really challenging to divorce the art from the opinions.
Talking to Rae Dawn Chong was an illuminating conversation about her experience with Hollywood. How she refused to compromise herself, and how that ultimately impacted her career. Being famous isn’t just about being talented, it is also about playing the game and knowing how to negotiate the players.