Once upon a time there was an A-list in Hollywood. This list was exclusive, near impossible to get into and most of all, it was short.
Back in the heyday of Hollywood glitz and glamour, the power was held by a few, namely the the George Clooneys, Meryl Streeps, Brad Pitts, Tom Cruises, Sandra Bullocks and Julia Roberts. They were Oscar winners, Golden Globe nominees and the keepers of box office gold, easily commanding $20 million or more per picture and one of the few doing so. They were also on magazine covers, every red carpet and the ones that first came to mind when you hear the term ‘movie star.’
All in all, the A-list was mysterious and private and truly the epitome of glamour. We wanted to know more about them and to tell us, the stars had to appear on magazine covers which we eagerly waited for. We had their posters on our walls and would spend all our pocket money on movie tickets. It surely was a Hollywood era like no other.
Today’s A-list is far from that. Of course, that’s not to say that the original crew isn’t any less famous or successful. But the names on our movie theatre marquees have changed. The original A-list has grown up, gotten married, had children and moved on. Most of them are in their second or third decades in Hollywood and have earned the luxury of choice. They appear in movies if and when they feel like it. In a nutshell, they’re veterans now.
A new group naturally had to move in. The young replace the old in Tinseltown, as in nature, and there’s a new A-list now, but it’s nothing like before. Today’s biggest stars operate on completely different terms than their predecessors.
This next-gen stars are all millennials. It’s Jennifer Lawrence, obviously. And Emma Stone, Reese Witherspoon, Blake Lively, Zac Efron, Ryan Reynolds and all the Chris’ (Hemsworth, Evans, Pine, Pratt…are we missing any?). These actors live out loud in every sense of the word. Their fame is as pervasive as their personalities. Rather than exuding an air of mystery, we know everything about them, reports Eonline.
As much as everyone loves Julia Roberts or George Clooney, they are actually quite intimidating. But the new A-list is reachable. Lawrence, for example, is loved all over because she seems like the girl next door. If we saw her at a restaurant, we’d try to sit down at her table and chat. While the old guard stayed famous by being hidden, the new guard stays famous by being visible.
Of late, many of the stars have been lashing out against anyone asking for a photo. Even the super affable Pratt himself has announced that he’ll offer only a handshake to fans from now on. We can’t deny the A-list’s level of privacy is now shockingly low, but it even being a problem in the first place is exactly the difference between the old and new guard.
Blame it on social media. Back when Clooney and Pitt were kings, the Internet was just someplace you travelled occasionally to check your email. Now, Instagram allows celebrities to get ahead of their own narrative and put out messages in their own world, and fans to interact with them like they’re classmates or coworkers. Would the Ocean’s Eleven cast have had as much fame if they had been Snapchatting from the set? Doesn’t seem likely.
So is there a solution, then? Searching for a one would imply there’s a problem worth fixing. At the end of the day, the byproduct of the new normal is a whole lot of fun. Actors aren’t taking themselves nearly as seriously as they once did and the relationship between fan-and-star is more of a give-and-take.
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