Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Call Off the Sharks

So I have MSN Messenger, right? And when you sign in it gives you this little window of news, entertainment, e-mail, etc. with all the top stories and searched items of the moment. One of these was an article about Kristen Stewart's Bad Attitude. It's all about how Ms. Stewart is not behaving with due grace and gratitude in her newfound spotlight. One of the people quoted in the article was a young lady who apparently had nothing better to do with her time than start an "I Hate Kristen Stewart" group. She has all this animosity toward a virtual stranger because she doesn't feel that Ms. Stewart is exhibiting the proper amount of reverence for the story. Does anyone else out there find this to be ridiculous?! Yet despite the violence of her dislike for the girl who is going to be in essentially every scene, this young lady is still going to see "New Moon". She even says that she'll just sit there getting angrier and angrier during the film . My question then becomes WHY?! Why go pay good money to become ANGRY for two hours?! In what parallel universe does that make sense?

Now, I am not a fan of Ms. Stewart, by any means. I find her method of delivery to be consistently comparable to uncontrollablly fired verbal bullets. Words burst out her mouth as though they're deperate to escape and feel safer going in groups. But I feel sorry for her! I can hear you out there thinking, "Oh, yeah! I feel sorry for the poor kid. Rich and famous overnight. Oh, the humanity!" I know. But seriously, think about it for a second. People expect her to be as big a fan of the Twilight universe as they are. And she's not. She's never made any secret of it. She hadn't even read any of the books when she read for the role. By all indications, she never intended to be a big star. She was strictly indie. I imagine she thought this was just another indie film. And for someone who didn't know what Twilight was, the film had a lot of those earmarks. A low budget, an relatively unknown director, virtual unknowns for the leads, and a story that was different than the commonly accepted lexicon for the Fantastical. Her mistake was an innocent one.

Frankly, people have an entirely different set of expectations for Indie actors, and they were expectations that suited her and she could and did meet. With Indies, you expect them to read Sartre and quote obscure poets, listen to deep, dark music from bands no one else has ever heard of and wear clothes that are a little...odd. Their social skills are also not of the average variety. You expect them to be somewhat biting, sarcastic and derisive toward the mainstream. You don't think twice about it, 'cause that's just the deal with them. There's a reason the Paps don't follow them. And you gotta admit, Stewart fits in that world. The drawback to this Indie-ness is that in sticking to the shadowy corners of society, they are pretty much unaware of what goes on in the brightly lit center of society. This out of touch-ness led Ms. Stewart to commit the fatal faux pas of accepting a role in a pop culture phenomenon, which, I would imagine, goes against everything she believes in, and everything she had chosen for her life up to that point. But she's stuck now. And she is completely unprepared for the life she now leads. All of the skills, habits, and preferences that worked so smoothly on the Shadowy Edges, are causing her to be crucified in the brightly lit center. She is now in the unenviable position of having to, if not embrace, at least tolerate with good grace, the nightmare of learning an entirely new set of skills while under highly critical attention of a microscopic degree. Not fun. In fact, I'll bet she feels pretty dang betrayed right about now. Not to mention bereft. The life she planned for, worked for, is gone forever now. And in its place is this monstrosity that she never wanted to have anything to do with. That's a lot for an 18 year old to deal with. That's a lot for a 45 year old to deal with! Oh, did you forget that? How well would you have handled having all your comfort zones and all your goals publicly stripped away from you at the age of 18, leaving you all but naked in the spotlight, raw and exposed, while you tried desperately to scramble for some semblance of what you used to call normal?

All in all, I think it's time for the generous spirit of America to kick in and cut this kid a little slack while she's on this rather steep and brutal learning curve.

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