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Entries in Celebrities (9)

Thursday
Mar282013

Study: Fame Isn't Fleeting

Photo by: Paul Drinkwater/NBC(NEW YORK) -- True fame lasts far longer than 15 minutes, according to a new study.

The study, published in the American Sociological Review, found that the vast majority of people who become "truly famous" stay famous for years. The study looked at 10,000 names mentioned in 2,200 print media sources over a 5-year span. The top ten most frequently mentioned names were Jamie Foxx, Bill Murray, Natalie Portman, Tommy Lee Jones, Naomi Watts, Howard Hughes, Phil Spector, John Malkovich, Adrien Brody and Steve Buscemi.

Interestingly, every one of the top ten most commonly mentioned celebrities had been in the news for over a decade. It seems that celebrities in the higher tier of fame have a low turnover rate.

While there are some people who really do get just 15 minutes of fame, they tend to be on a much lower level of celebrity. The study suggested that that manner of fame -- like lottery winners and whistle blowers -- tend to be famous for one particular event and disappear into anonymity rather quickly.

Finally, the researchers determined that once the event that causes a person to become famous becomes a "large and long public conversation," the name is "locked in," increasing the likelihood that their fame will last much longer.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Dec222012

Celebrities Suffer from Food Allergies

Kevin Winter/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Many across the nation suffer from food allergies, which includes celebrities.

New Girl star Zooey Deschanel reportedly has sensitivities to eggs, dairy and wheat, which contains the protein “glue,” gluten.

The View co-host Elizabeth Hasselbeck and political commentator Keith Olbermann both have celiac disease, a digestive condition caused by an immune reaction to gluten. This disease affects roughly one in 133 Americans, according to the National Institutes of Health.

Actress Jennifer Esposito also suffers from celiac disease and founded the Jennifer’s Way Foundation for Celiac Education, according to her website.

Tennis star Serena Williams and actor Ray Romano reportedly suffer from peanut allergies, the most common food allergen among children, according to the American Academy of Asthma, Allergy and Immunology.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Dec042012

Anne Hathaway Reveals ‘Shame’ Over ‘Stress’ to Be Thin

Fred Duval/FilmMagic(NEW YORK) -- Anne Hathaway grins on the latest issue of Glamour, beaming in a pair of hot pants and a tank top. But in an interview with the magazine, the Les Miserables star reveals that her obsession with being thin is a source of “shame.” and says she constantly worries about her body.

“I still feel the stress over, ‘Am I thin enough? Am I too thin? Is my body the right shape?’” she says. “There’s an obsessive quality to it that I thought I would’ve grown out of by now. It’s an ongoing source of shame for me.”

Hathaway lost 25 pounds for the film version of Les Miserables, which comes out December 25. In an interview with Allure earlier this year, the 29-year-old actress said she subsisted on a 500-calorie diet of radishes and hummus to play tuberculosis-ridden prostitute Fantine.

She also chopped off her hair, an act that left her “shaking like a leaf.” But she tells Glamour she now feels like the “coolest girl in the world,” and says “people are warmer to me” because of her pixie cut.

“Also, I’m a fairly shy person, and [in the past] on days when I didn’t want to deal with the world, I’d wear a hat and pull my hair around me and hide,” she says. “I can’t do that now. I have to be me all the time.”

Still, paparazzi and the potential for ridicule scare her, and she tells Glamour that she’d be “so much more eccentric” in her day-to-day life if it weren’t for all those prying eyes.

“I know it makes me sound weak, but rather than make myself happy and wear the silly hat and say, ‘Oh, I don’t care,’ I actually really don’t feel like getting made fun of,” she says. “So I put on something boring and navy and go out and try to disappear.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Sep262012

Researchers Face Off Over Celebrities in Health Campaigns

Ian Gavan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Gwyneth Paltrow lent her voice (and tears) to Stand Up to Cancer's United Kingdom launch, prompting almost 200 news articles by noon Wednesday. But do celebrities like Paltrow really help the public health campaigns they stand behind?

Two researchers went head to head to answer the question, duking it out as only a public health professor and an honorary research fellow can: in 900-word articles published in the BMJ, formerly the British Medical Journal.

Simon Chapman, a professor of public health at the University of Sydney, argued that celebrities help by way of offering publicity for an issue.  Although they are not experts, he wrote, they lend personal stories that bring issues to life for the public.

Chapman preempted criticisms by saying celebrity-boosted public health campaigns are often saddled with unrealistic expectations and criticized when they aren't met.  He pointed to the way pop star Kylie Minogue's breast cancer screenings led more women -- including those not in the target age range or risk groups -- to have mammograms, leading to false positives and unnecessary radiation.

"The ambivalence about 'the Kylie effect' reflects enduring debate about the wisdom of breast screening, but it should not blind us to the potential value of celebrity engagement in important cases," he wrote.  "Playing to the media's appetite for those experiencing health problems, celebrities often speak personally and bring compelling authenticity to public discourse."

Chapman's opponent, Geof Rayner, a research fellow at the City University in London, wrote that celebrities can't help a health campaign because celebrity status is "fleeting" and they aren't ideal role models.

After questioning the unhealthy influences of the public's "fake friendships" with celebrities over social media and pointing out that Ronald Reagan once told Americans what cigarettes to smoke, Rayner concluded that celebrities can't be "saviors" just because they're involved in health campaigns.

When it comes to using celebrities as a shortcut to public health awareness, "You'll never win," Rayner told ABC News in a phone interview.

Other health journalism critics said viewers should weigh celebrity testimony appropriately and consider who is paying for the messages celebrities offer.

Gary Schwitzer, a health journalism critic and professor at the University of Minnesota, said celebrity stories are often presented with expert testimony in an unbalanced way, and the celebrity's experience is often not representative of most people with that health condition because the celebrity often has more wealth and better access to health care.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Aug202012

Celebrity 'Momshells' Pressured to Look Perfect After Giving Birth

Alo Ceballos/FilmMagic(NEW YORK) -- Applauding new Hollywood mothers for slimming down in no time flat after shedding their baby weight has become one of the hottest trends splashed across celebrity magazines.

Call them "momshells" (mother-as-bombshell) for bouncing back after having a baby and jumping right back into their busy Hollywood careers looking svelte and stylish with no signs of baby weight.

Janice Min spearheaded many of those kinds of covers during her six-year stint as editor of Us Weekly, but now, after giving birth to her third child, she's pushing back against what she calls unhealthy pressure on everyday new moms.

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In a new article for The New York Times, the 42-year-old Min says, "…the notion that instantly stick-thin figures after birth are normal is untrue. Sometimes, in my sleep-deprived nights, I ponder our ideal of this near-emaciated, sexy and well-dressed Frankenmom we've created and wonder how to undo her."

Hillary Duff, 24, gave birth to her son, Luca, in March and recently faced a barrage of critical tweets for not losing her baby weight fast enough. Bollywood beauty Aishwarya Rai and Bryce Dallas Howard, who starred in The Help, also faced similar backlash.

"You see these magazines that are filled with celebrities, that within weeks, have bounced back and they're back to their pre-baby weight, and I think for most women it really puts a lot of pressure on them," CloudMom.com CEO Melissa Lawrence said.

Actress Kelly Preston, 49, said she refused to rush her weight loss after giving birth to son Benjamin in 2010.

"I actually took my time purposely because I really wanted to. You can do it much more quickly," Preston told Robin Roberts of Good Morning America in December. "I'm not into the three to four weeks. But, I did it over the course of eight months."

Katie Schunk is among a group of new moms who are fighting back against the blitz of magazine covers.

"If we could reach one woman to maybe not feel so bad about herself, I think that's exactly what we wanted to do," Schunk said.

Much like Min, Schunk says new moms shouldn't feel pressure to be thin, that being a great mother is what makes them "momshells."

Women need to have realistic goals when it comes to getting back into pre-baby shape, More magazine editor-in–chief, Lesley Jane Seymour, and women’s health expert, Dr. Jennifer Ashton, said Monday on GMA.

“Nobody can live to that standard,” Seymour said. “[Celebrities] have $40,000 exercising gurus. You’re not being paid for that. That is not your job. They have to get in shape in two weeks because they’ve got to go on the set. That is not the normal human being.”

Ashton said the pressure on women to bounce back immediately after giving birth is a type of “peer pressure,” but that it does “behoove a mother to get into as good of a shape as she can be.”

"As moms we know that being a mother and running a household is an athletic event into itself,” Ashton said. “Two seconds after she gives birth? No. ... Give yourself at least nine months to get back.”

Seymour, also a mother, said “it takes a year” to get your pre-baby body back and that’s the real message celebrity magazine cover stories should convey to readers.

“We should remember what it is. They’re celebrities,” Ashton echoed. “You don’t want to ‘keep up with the Joneses,’ you want to do the best you can for your body and your family.”

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
May112012

Yo-Yo Dieting Means Big PayDays for Celebs

Donna Ward/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- When legendary beauty Elizabeth Taylor packed on the pounds, she found herself the butt of late-night jokes...but today, she might find herself making millions off endorsements. As the success of celebrities like Valerie Bertinelli and Kirstie Alley shows, waging a public battle with the bulge is no longer a detour from stardom.

Celebrities "are able to monetize just getting fat and losing weight," explained Jo Piazza, author of the 2011 book Celebrity Inc.: How Famous People Make Money.

The key, Piazza said, is teaming up with a weight-loss company. Bertinelli became the face of Jenny Craig and lost 50 pounds in the process.

"I believe in Jenny Craig. They've gotten me to where I am today," the former One Day at a Time star said in a 2009 interview with ABC News.

After shedding the weight, Bertinelli went on to become a best-selling author with the book Losing It: And Gaining My Life Back One Pound at a Time and scored a starring role in the cable sitcom Hot in Cleveland.

Piazza said celebrities take home anywhere between $500,000 and $2 million for endorsing diet programs. New mom Jessica Simpson reportedly signed a Weight Watchers deal worth $3 million.

"Jessica has not been shy about gaining weight with this pregnancy," Piazza said. "But I think that she hasn't been shy about it because she knows that she's going to do a diet endorsement deal when all of this is over."

Piazza estimated that Valerie Bertinelli's earning equaled roughly $60,000 for each pound she lost. On average, she said, celebrity diet endorsers earn about $33,000 for every dropped pound.

But they don't do it alone. Piazza said that, unlike your average dieter, celebs often have the benefit of personal chefs and personal trainers. Stars like Bertinelli have kept the weight off ... but putting it back on doesn't mean disaster for celebs either. Case in point: Famous yo-yo dieter Kirstie Alley. Alley signed on to work with Jenny Craig in 2005. She went on to lose 75 pounds, according to a Jenny Craig spokesman, but then gained it all back and then some. Today, Alley is svelte once more after competing on ABC's physically grueling dance competition, "Dancing With the Stars" last year and starting her own grassroots fitness campaign, "100 Days of Dance."

What's more, Alley started her own weight-loss program, called Organic Liason, consisting of weight-oss products, dietary supplements and online tools such as a menu planner.

While female celebs fronting weight-loss products have included singers like Jennifer Hudson (for Weight Watchers) and actresses like Bertinelli and Alley, former athletes seem to be preferred weight loss role models for men. Piazza calls retired quarterback Dan Marino, a spokesman for Nutrisystem, a "breakout star."

"Athletes are aspirational to men. Every man secretly thinks that he's Dan Marino in his prime -- he just has to lose about ten pounds to get there," Piazza said.

In contrast, ads by Seinfeld star Jason Alexander for Jenny Craig just didn't have the same impact, Piazza said.

"Jason Alexander's ads were hilarious, but frankly, men don't want to lose weight to look like George Costanza," Piazza said, referring to Alexander's Seinfeld character.

Charles Barkley is one of the latest former athletes to jump on the weight-loss bandwagon. The retired basketball player-turned-sports commentator said he's lost 42 pounds while being a spokesman for Weight Watchers.

"I can't believe I'm getting' paid to lose weight!" he told 20/20 correspondent Deborah Roberts. "This is the greatest country in the world!"

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Mar202012

Kathy Bates Reveals Why She Kept Ovarian Cancer a Secret

John Shearer/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- Veteran actress Kathy Bates battled ovarian cancer almost a decade ago and is now opening up about why she originally kept her diagnosis a secret.

“I was advised to [do so],” Bates, 63, told Anderson Cooper in an episode of his daytime talk show Anderson airing Thursday. "I was contracted to go into a movie at that time, Little Black Book with Brittany Murphy, who I miss very much. My doctors at the time, they had to get insurance approval and all of that so I was very quiet about it and had to go back to work right away.”

Little Black Book
came out in 2004. Bates went public about her cancer battle in 2009, saying on NBC that she had been in remission for more than five years.

On Anderson, Bates said she also had personal reasons for keeping her diagnosis quiet.

“Nobody else really knows what you’re going through except another cancer patient,” she said. “Even though your family’s supportive and surrounds you, I just got to the point where I would go to chemo by myself and just really go through it on my own.”

Having toughed it out in secret, Bates said she would be more open about her fight if the cancer returned.

“I admire people who have been open, like Melissa Etheridge and women I see walking around facing it without wigs and all of that stuff,” she said. “I think I’d be more courageous next time.”

Bates isn’t the only actress to recently open up about hiding a cancer diagnosis. Modern Family star Sofia Vergara told Health magazine why she kept her thyroid cancer a secret when she was diagnosed in 2000.

“I didn’t want publicity because of that,” she said. “Having cancer is not fun. You don’t want to deal with anything else while you’re going through it.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Feb102012

Celebrity Voices Saved by Surgery

Kevin Mazur/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- Singer-songwriter Adele will take the stage at the Grammys on Sunday, giving her first performance since she had surgery in November for a vocal cord hemorrhage. Though operations have saved several famous voices in recent years, doctors say going under the knife is often a last resort when it comes to repairing vocal cords.

A vocal cord hemorrhage like Adele’s happens when tiny blood vessels feeding the vocal cords rupture and leak. Surgery can seal the blood vessels to prevent them from filling the vocal cords with blood, which make it difficult for them to vibrate.

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Recovering from the surgery is no small matter, especially for a performer who needs a booming voice to sing for millions of people. Dr. Kristine Tanner, clinical director of the University of Utah Voice Disorders Center, said Adele has likely had full use of her voice since early January. Usually after surgery for a vocal hemorrhage, patients completely rest their voices for one week, begin speaking lightly after two or three weeks and can gradually begin singing three to six weeks after surgery.

“Then you have to work back up to your previous endurance level, like going back to the gym after being out for six weeks,” Tanner said.

Vocal cord problems are an occupational hazard for many professional singers, recently plaguing the likes of John Mayer and Keith Urban, both of whom went under the knife to save their voices.

Performers who belt out songs to sold-out arenas, record tracks for new albums and use their voice for day-to-day speaking can develop polyps and nodules on their cords, keeping them from vibrating correctly when air passes over them. Doctors can detect these problems using imaging technology and scopes with cameras attached, and fix them with minimally invasive procedures, such as phonomicrosurgery.

But voice experts say surgery is often a last resort for a performer’s vocal troubles. Dr. Michael Benninger, chairman of the Head and Neck Institute at the Cleveland Clinic, has treated dozens of celebrity singers and public speakers. He said most doctors recommend other types of treatments to correct patients’ vocal troubles.

“We rarely have to do surgery on these patients,” Benninger said. “It is surprising how many high-profile performers that we see that behavioral modification is what they need.”

Formal vocal training, speech therapy, larynx massages and even changes in diet, alcohol use and other lifestyle habits can do a lot to alleviate exhausted, injured vocal cords, which can take as much of a beating as the muscles and bones of athletes. Often, these fixes are a better solution than surgery, Tanner said.

“It’s like a runner. You can operate on their ankle, but it would be preferred to change their form so they don’t continue to re-injure themselves,” Tanner said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb082012

Top Rehab Facilities: The Coziest, Most Expensive Clinics

Eric Thayer/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- With A-list celebrities in and out of rehab, it's becoming hard to keep track of the nation's top recovery facilities -- and of course, what kind of luxurious amenities they offer. Here's a look at the country's coziest and most expensive clinics for the rich and famous.

Promises Treatment Center
With centers in Malibu, Calif., and Los Angeles, Promises could be considered the most A-list rehab facility in the United States. They offer clients residential and extended-care treatment that includes life coaching, anger management and even equine and art therapy. Promises uses the "Malibu Model," which allows clients more freedom, allowing them to leave the facility, compared to other rehab clinics where clients can't leave the grounds and visitors are limited.
Famous alumni: Lindsay Lohan, Charlie Sheen, Britney Spears

The Betty Ford Center
The famed center, which was founded in 1982 by the late U.S. first lady, offers inpatient, outpatient and day treatment. The Rancho Mirage-based center has 100 beds available for patients. In addition to a detox program and an intensive outpatient program, the center offers programs for children of alcoholics and for young adults. The center is largely funded by private donations, the Betty Ford Center Foundation, and alumni of the program.
Famous alumni: Robert Downey Jr., Kelsey Grammer, Stevie Nicks, Elizabeth Taylor

Cirque Lodge
Founded in 1999 in Sundance, Utah, Cirque Lodge holds a maximum of 56 patients between two facilities. Another center is based in Orem, Utah. Based on Alcoholics Anonymous' (AA) traditional 12-step program, Cirque will cost patients $1,595 a day, with a 30-day minimum stay. The Sundance facility sits in the shadow of Utah's 12,000-foot Mount Timpanogos and is in the same neighborhood as Robert Redford's estate. Rooms at the Lodge reportedly boast marble bathrooms with jacuzzi tubs, while the facility also owns a seven-seater helicopter that can take guests up to view the mountains. Still, it's not all fun and games: clients are under strict rules while residing at Cirque. Prohibited items include cellphones, laptops and expensive jewelry.
Famous alumni: Kirsten Dunst, Eva Mendes, Mary-Kate Olsen

Passages Rehab Facility
Co-founded by father and son team Chris and Pax Prentiss, Passages Rehab Facility is popular with the celebrity set because of its Malibu location, luxurious accommodations and 3-to-1 staff-to-client ratio. The philosophy of the center differs from others in that it does not view addiction as a disease, but treats "addiction for what it truly is; a symptom of a deeper underlying issue," such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, among others.
Famous alumni: Andy Dick, David Hasselhoff and Stephen Baldwin

Pasadena Recovery Center
Famous for being featured on VH1's reality-based series Celebrity Rehab, Pasadena Recovery Center boasts that it offers "compassionate, comprehensive, and affordable treatment." Taking a holistic approach, the center looks to treat clients with mental, physical and spiritual recovery.
Famous alumni: Janice Dickinson, Eric Roberts and Rachel Uchitel

Caron Foundation

Although Caron has nine centers across the U.S. and even one in Bermuda, the Wernersville, Pennsylvania-based facility is probably its best-known. Caron offers medical detoxification, residential assessment programs, gender-separate rehabilitation, and relapse treatment. The center also uses the "Minnesota Model" of treatment, which states that addiction is a lifelong disease and abstinence, via AA's 12-step program, is the ideal route to a drug and alcohol-free life.
Famous clientele: beauty queen Tara Conner, Liza Minnelli and Steven Tyler

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio