They’re Selling, Everybody’s Buying

Shatner Bits for Sale: No reasonable offer refusedEverything to do with entertainment is about moving product. Some of what’s being pushed can be works of art, while other products are pure commercialism. If you’ve recorded an album, made a film, painted a picture, you are likely aiming for it to be bought.

This goes double for celebrities, but it is such a part of what they are that you rarely notice. But every once and awhile the curtain gets pulled back and you catch a glimpse of the machinations:

• Take Stephen King for example – he hates cellphones. “They're 21st-century slave bracelets,” he told the Wall Street Journal, saying he sees cellphones as an impingement on personal freedom. “If you've got one, it becomes addictive. Also, people can always find you.” So logically he is promoting Cell, his new novel about a pulse sent through cell phones turns people who hear it into killers, by sending text messages to 100,000 cell users and selling ring tones of his voice. Umm, is it just me, or did someone in marketing (or King himself) not read what the book is about, or why he wrote it? And what’s with King anyway? Didn’t he say he was going to retire?

• Now this one is just weird. William Shatner, the erstwhile Captain Kirk, has sold his kidney stone, with the benefits going to Habitat for Humanity.
"When I was contacted about selling my kidney stone to for an original price of $15,000 I turned it down knowing that my tunics from Star Trek have commanded more than $100,000," says Shatner. "I offered the stone, stint and string for $25,000 and informed them that 100 percent of the proceeds would go to benefit Habitat for Humanity and I retain visitation rights."
I guess if someone is willing to pay and the money going to charity, why not? And what’s in it for GoldenPalace, the group who has bought a piece of toast with the Virgin Mary on it and paid people who have gotten on TV with the corporate name written on their body? Well, I just wrote about them, didn’t I?

• Kelly Clarkson doesn’t seem to understand this marketing concept. It seems that the season one winner of American Idol is refusing to allow her songs to be performed by Idol contestants.
A spokesman for Clarkson's record label denied that the ban on her material was anything personal against Idol and said that the "Since U Been Gone" singer was not permitting any of her songs to be licensed for other uses. Nonetheless, Cowell lashed out at Clarkson, accusing her of "ignoring the audience" responsible for her fame.
I’ve never been much of a fan of Idol, and I certainly didn’t expect someone would build a real career out of winning, but now that she has it’s seems a little sour to be shunning the show. Ya gotta dance with the one what brung ya.

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