Hollywood Is Retiring From Public Life

Hollywood Is Retiring From Public Life

Leigh MichaelWednesday,26 February 2014

The Snap:

A few weeks ago, Shia LeBeouf made headlines by announcing that he would be retiring from public life. James Franco claimed that his status as a prominent public figure was taking a toll on his career. Yesterday, Alec Baldwin wrote an open letter, published on Vulture, announcing his withdrawal from public life.

The Download:

I haven’t changed, but public life has.
It used to be you’d go into a restaurant and the owner would say, “Do you mind if I take a picture of you and put it on my wall?” Sweet and simple. Now, everyone has a camera in their pocket.”

And so it goes in Alec Baldwin’s verbose letter to… America? The world?… announcing his departure from the public scene.

In the past year, the mercurial actor has been a tabloid’s dream. First, after a journalist accused Baldwin’s wife of live-tweeting James Gandolfini’s funeral, he released a stream of just-not-okay tweets that made him look like a homophobic idiot, a bully, and a bigot. Then there was that event in which he made racial slurs against a photographer. His actions caught up to him, and last week, MSNBC announced their decision to boot him off their schedule, effectively canceling his short-lived talk show, Up Late with Alec Baldwin.

And this is how The Letter came to be.

Is it just me, or does it seem that all of the folks are vowing a life of “publicity chastity” are the ones who just can’t shut up?

When James Franco wrote his ridiculous op-ed in the New York Times where he kindly shared his views about LeBeouf’s antics, he gave us a fun little glimpse into the bull-shittery that is his attempt to evade (edit: be in the center of) the public scene.

It takes a certain kind of gumption to make it in the Hollywood sphere.

I get it. I admire it. But don’t lie to me, and don’t lie to yourself. Baldwin, LeBeouf, Franco: You love being the center of attention. You thrive on it. And you can’t really stop. So, when you see that we aren’t paying attention to you (yes, James Franco, I had almost forgotten about you since Pineapple Express, and Alec Baldwin, the last time I thought about you was when I watched It’s Complicated), you just can’t help but to do something that will get you noticed again.

You guys aren’t retiring from public life… You’re wheedling your way back into it.

And, in the process, destroying your legacy. We won’t remember you for that awesome performance…. We’ll remember you for being an asshole.

Congratulations! You’re famous!

Take Action!

Hat Tips:

Vulture, LA Times, Washington Times, NBCNew York Times, Image Credit: Flickr

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