Tuesday, 28 March 2006
You can’t open a newspaper or magazine these days without reading about the son or daughter of an actor or a celebrity. The same names appear with monotonous regularity.
Above are two Jaggers, two Lennons, one Harris and one Bowie; had I the time or the patience I could have posted three Redgraves, two Thaws, two Kinskis, one Marley, etc. etc.
I don’t care what their first names are; their surnames are famous and, in most cases, one instance of those surnames should have been enough.
Of course there have always been ‘dynasties’, in all walks of life: people have been butchers de père en fils, seamstresses de mère en fille, but the parents were passing on a craft, a trade, a skill of some kind. Lawyers and doctors also encourage their children to pursue the same profession, but that’s because they’ve usually invested in a practice and it pays for it to stay in the family, and the children usually benefit from their parents’ reputation. .
What do actors and celebrities pass on to their offspring, apart from a desire to be famous and having a fun life like Mummy or Daddy? It must be incredibly difficult to resist if, from age zero, you’ve been aware that your parents are being celebrated, flown to exotic locations, photographed and admired.
Some of those actors and artistes are quite talented, but who knows how far they would have got to with their smidgen of talent if they hadn’t been called Jagger, Lennon, Harris, Bowie, etc. It really amazes me when sons and daughters of famous people try to persuade me that they didn’t want to take advantage of their names. No, of course not, so why didn’t you change your name, then? Who are they kidding? Of course sometimes the resemblance between parent and child is so obvious that a different name wouldn’t have fooled anyone (in the case of Natasha Richardson, for instance, it’s the voice) and they would always have had a head start.
Talent is not hereditary. Proof? Keira Knightley. She’s the daughter of a moderately talented actor and quite a good playwright, yet she doesn’t have a modicum of acting talent herself…
They all deserve to be slapped for proliferating so much and getting jobs that could have been done much better by unknowns had the latter had the chance to even be considered for them. How do you say ‘no’ to the daughter of Vanessa Redgrave (herself the daughter of a famous actor) or the son of Robert Stephens and Maggie Smith?
Posted by Bela at 5:26 am