It’s been on our mind for a while, but with the past two days being what they have (you know, Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart being snapped kissing and then angrily leaving and arriving at airports) we thought it might be a good time to have a fireside chat about the world of celebrity gossip, paparazzi and fans, a world in which - for better or for worse - we are deeply entrenched.
Some history: we started writing professionally about celebrity gossip in 2005-2006, back in the good ol’ days of celebrities whoring themselves out for lurking photographers. You remember: Lindsay Lohan and Nicole Richie, rocking cowboy boots and linking bones arms for leisurely strolls down Robertson Boulevard, or shoving cake into their mouths in silent protest of the eating disorder rumors that swirled around them. Paris Hilton Paris Hiltoning around town. All those vaginas, flashing in the wind. Those were the glory days.
But then everyone went crazy and ended up in jail and rehab and psychiatric wards, and while we still felt a bit awkward staring at the pics of them melting down in Ugg Boots and ratty hair extensions, they had already paved the way for the attention. You can’t nip slip your life away and then get annoyed when people gawk as you get carted off to jail (Paris Hilton, this is your life).
Which brings us to our current conundrum - the Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart situation. Here you have two actors (one of whom normally sticks to low-budget indie dramas and the other who was about to quit the business all together before Twilight rolled around) who fell both into fame and - cheesy writing alert - each others’ arms and are now stuck living out their lives in front of a bunch of taunting stalkers with cameras. Lives that look to be, by all accounts, really effing boring - and we mean that as a compliment. They are the anti-Lohans, and we love it. Being both celebrity gossip bloggers as well as fans of our dear Twi-couple, we’ve had a weird time figuring out the most appropriate way to cover them. In the end we’ve gotta do what makes the most sense to TheFABlife editorially while still striving to maintain some dignity and integrity along the way. (Some, not all.)
We’ve noticed a lot of fan sites seem to operate along this policy: if the pictures are of the happy couple doing happy things, they’ll post them. If they seem invasive or the stars appear upset, they stay away.We respect these guidelines, but we’re curious how this week’s events fit in to the general fandom policy on paparazzi photos. Obviously we reacted to the pics of Robsten kissing in Montreal with a million girl boners and examined them all blown up in Photoshop for hours, analyzing every facial expression and string bracelet. They were on every Twilight blog and Twitter site within seconds of being posted and the general vibe on the web seemed to be “SQUEEE!” Same with everyone’s favorite Parisian hand-holding moment from last fall. But the second Kristen and Rob show up pissed off at the airport (a public place), people freak out about invasive photographers and respecting Rob and Kristen’s privacy.
In the end it seems that if the photo shows something we’re all dying to see, we put aside our morals and melt a bit (let’s admit it once more: that kiss was epic, especially TomStu’s, uh, role). But the juicy photos are just as invasive - if not more so. We’d much rather be photographed in our skinny jeans at the airport than nuzzling with our British boyfriend in a presumably private place while anticipating the bag of delicious French pastries he purchased for us while we were busy making movie magic.
We’ve interviewed both Rob and Kristen while doing press for various movies and they’ve both been polite, pleasant, attentive and thoughtful. That is part of their job as actors promoting a movie, and they do their jobs really well. Contrary to what a photographer shouted to them at LAX yesterday, being famous is not part of their job description, and they’ve done everything in their power to make that clear. But the more they hide, the more their lives continue to be exposed. The couple moves to a house in the middle of nowhere, the paps leak photos of said alleged love-nest all over the web (we found them in about two seconds). When Kristen stumbles at the Moantreal airport there are photographers - and even fans - on hand to capture it.
So what do we fans - and sites that delve into the world of celebrity - do: honor their wishes or satisfy our own? ‘Cause even though it pains us to admit it, the more Robsten pics that come out, the happier we are…even though we know it makes Rob and Kristen absolutely miserable. As long as we’re here clicking on the pics, the photographs are going to be up in their faces. Is it just now a given part of their lives as unwilling A-Listers, or is it totally unfair?
What do you think about this week’s Robsten photos, the paparazzi attention they receive and the role the fans play in all of it? We’d love to hear from you, and the comments section is open to anyone who cares to chime in. Join us! (But please play nice.)