Celebrities’ children are already building up their resumés at the age of…4 months?
By Lauren Mateer
Some celebrities love to put their kids in the limelight, while others prefer to keep their kids away from the fame of showbiz. If celebrities didn’t over publicize their children, would we not have to deal with another generation of Hiltons and Ritchies? Or would it cause us to lose future acting dynasties. Is it fair to put kids in the spotlight just because their parents are famous?
There are three things that people almost universally love: babies, celebrities, and stuff that is adorable. Therefore, the fascination in celebrity children comes as no surprise. The topic features babies, celebrities, and—with the genes of such notable hotties as Brad Pitt, Jennifer Garner, and Tom Cruise making up their DNA—these kids obviously fall under the heading of ‘stuff that is adorable’.
This means that celebrity babies are big business. According to TheInsider.com, paparazzi photos of celeb’s children can bring in up to $5 million if sold to the right magazine, and staged pictures are worth even more. MSNBC reported last year that the first publicized photographs of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s twins were sold to People magazine for $15 million.
Some celebrities take a pragmatic approach to the publicity of their babies. Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes sheltered their daughter, Suri, and allowed no pictures of her to be published until months after her birth.
Some turn the baby paparazzi trend into a humanitarian statement. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie sold pictures of their children to a magazine, and then donated the money to charity. While some argue that putting one’s child in the spotlight is exploitative, others argue that it can be not only philanthropic but also practical.
Freshman Kyla Pigoni brings up the point that the public was wildly interested in Suri Cruise in the first few months of her birth mainly because they hadn’t seen her.
“If you let the public see them, they’ll probably lose interest,” Pigoni says of celebrity children. This would allow famous families to live their lives without constant interruption from the pressures of fame or the media.
Some celebrity children choose not to live their lives in the limelight. When the Osbourne family got a reality show on MTV, Ozzy, Sharon, Jack, and Kelly became household names. Many of the show’s viewers weren’t even alive when Ozzy was famous for his music instead of being unintelligible.
What few people knew was that the Osbournes have another daughter, Aimee, who chose not to appear on the show. Many people don’t even know that she exists, which does make a case for the kids of celebs to be able to avoid stardom.
On the other hand, is a child as young as Suri Cruise or Shiloh Jolie-Pitt really able to stay away from the paps if they have to be with their parents all the time? And they’re certainly not going to be able to tell their parents they don’t want a part of the lifestyle.
Freshman Erin Dunphy, an admitted fan of celeb gossip, including news about the children of celebrities, says that while she can’t resist looking at adorable pictures of Suri Cruise or Matilda Ledger, she is uncomfortable with celebrity parents allowing their children to become famous.
“Some of [those kids] might not want to grow up to be stars like their parents,” Dunphy says. “I could imagine it has some traumatizing effects.”
Freshman Julia Perry agrees. While Perry says she is not a big fan of celebrity news in general, she feels particularly uncomfortable with paparazzi photos of celebrity children.
“I just feel bad for the children. They did not choose to have this life, and they’re just stuck there,” Perry says. “They’re not going to have a childhood.”
We have seen what has happened to previous child starlets, involving drugs and police records. Will this sort of effect take hold on the celeb babies of today? All evidence points to yes.