JUMP CUT
A REVIEW OF CONTEMPORARY MEDIA

 

Notes

1. At the time of writing, MI-iii, with a domestic gross of $133 million (compared with a budget of $150 million+) clearly performed far below expectations. 
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2. Bear in mind, this is more of a suggestive hopeful vision than reality: while Perez asserts that star consumers have become accepting of homosexuality, in reality, coming out would in all probability significantly decrease Cruise's earning power.

3. According to a survey conducted by the Simmons Market Research Bureau, gays represent the ultimate “DINK” market – Double Income, No Kids. The annual value of the gay and lesbian market exceeds $514 billion; the average household income for gay men was $52,624, 41% above the national average.

4. In a post from July 14th, in response to criticism from the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation for speculating about sexuality, Perez writes,

“We don't have the support of our people, and we love it! If we're hated, that means we're doing something right....We don't need your support, bitches. Michael Musto has been outing people for years, and he is our hero!”

5. As he proclaims in a broadcast of Ring My Bell, posted on October 18th, “if you're a celebrity or a politician, you're fair game.”

6. Bass is currently developing a reality show for UPN; in October of 2006, Bass and Reichen were presented with the Human Rights Campaign Visibility Award.

7. While Perez remains firm in his stance that coming out as a homosexual will not damage one's career, I must agree with Cruise: his star image is predicated on such an intense sense of masculinity that coming out as a homosexual would undoubtedly deharmonize his constructed image. Granted, Perez seems to be arguing that his attempts at hiding his homosexuality – his relationship with Cruise in particular – have already enacted such a deharmonization....so why not come out?

8. In a recently televised Queer Edge interview, Perez explains the genesis of his name as such: while club-hopping on New Year’s Eve in Miami, as they left each club, the promoter would exclaim “Oh don’t leave – Paris Hilton is coming later.” According to Hilton, after the third or fourth club, he realized that Paris Hilton definitely wasn’t coming – they were simply using the promise of her name to convince people to stay and buy more drinks. He turned to his friends and announced “Puh-lease, Paris Hilton is not showing up, but Perez Hilton might!” Watch the interview in its entirety at:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BOOcM6lEu7c&search
=perez%20hilton.

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9. Reader-reponse also provides a forum for the debate over Perez' outing. Following an August 6th post in which Perez asserts the homosexuality of Clay Aiken, “Nancy” responds:

“Once again, Perez....It is not your right nor is it your responsibility to out someone and to even ask people to do the dirty work for you. What is up with that? It is nothing short of vicious.”

“Katie” expands this thought further, writing

“ Just because you are a flamboyantly and openly gay person and that works for you, doesn't mean that it will work for everyone.  Your work and much of your image, or "gimmick" per say, is based on being gay. This is not true for Clay Aiken. He found fame through American Idol. A majority of American Idol's viewers are religious middle Americans. Furthermore, America is not yet a country where most of it's general population can look at an entertainer purley for talent and not jugde them based on their personal lives.”

10. Interestingly, Hilton originally encouraged readers to watch Spelling’s new reality show; he was even invited to her wedding. But after Spelling and her fiancé eloped, eliminating her potential for publicity, both by Perez and the rest of the gossip world, he has turned against her – clearly, her move indicates an unwise publicity move, which further decreases her skill at celebrity and worthiness of affection. The dichotomy between “deserving” and “undeserving” stars reinforces the notion that “magic” and “talent” are indeed essential to the production of a star.
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11. Beckham also designs mid-priced jeans for Rock and Republic, effectively commodifying her own image and allowing others to purchase and emulate (and thus reify it) for themselves.

12. Indeed, in a post from June 29th, Perez writes,

“We used to be a Britney fan through thick and thin, but Spears has thoroughly disappointed us (repeatedly) lately. Christina, on the other hand, has been turning it out. The singer looks stunning on the cover of her new album. Team Aguilera all the way!”

13. See Britney Spears’s site for a particularly compelling example

14. For more on Kingsley and her skill at managing Cruise's image, see Anne Thompson, “Pitt vs. Cruise: A Tale of Two Publicists.”

Works cited

Balazs, Bela. “The Close Up.” Film Theory and Criticism. Gerald Mast and Marshall Cohen, eds. New York: Oxford University Press, 1974, 185-194.

Barthes, Roland. Mythologies. Paris: Editions du Seuil, 1970.

Boorstin, Daniel. The Image. London: Widenfeld and Nicolson, 1962.

“Did Gossip Blogger Out Lance Bass?” MSNBC.com. 27 July 2006.  15 October 2006.
<http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14065223/from/ET/>

Dyer, Richard. Stars. London: BFI, 1998.

— — —. The Culture of Queers. New York: Routledge, 2002.

Jarvie, I.C., Towards a Sociology of the Cinema. London: Routledge, 1970.

Manovich, Lev. The Language of New Media. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 2001.

McDonald, Paul. The Star System. London: Wallflower, 2000.

McNamara, Melissa. “Did Bloggers Doom Mi-iii?” CBS News Online. 10 May 2006. 13 May 2006.
<http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/05/09/
blogophile/main1600758.shtml
>

Mohr, Richard. Gay Ideas: Outing and Other Controversies. Boston: Beacon Press, 1992.

“Paramount: Cruise is Risky Business.” CNNMoney.com. 23 August 2006. 10 October 2006.
<http://money.cnn.com/2006/08/22/news/
newsmakers/cruise_paramount/index.htm?cnn=yes
>

“Tom Cruise v. Chad Slater aka Kyle Bradford.” 02 May 2001. 15 October 2006. 
<http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/
chadslater1.html
>

Thompson, Anne. “Pitt vs. Cruise: A Tale of Two Publicists.” The Hollywood Reporter. 5 June 2005.
<http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr/
columns/risky_business_display>

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Thomson, David. The New Biographical Dictionary of Film. New York: Alfred A Knopf, 2002


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