Wednesday, September 19

What is Hollywood?

I've noticed an interesting little debate that has been occurring over the past few weeks ... What exactly is Hollywood?

It was sparked by Kim Kardashian's application to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  You do have to pay for it, but it's an extensive application process and not everyone gets admitted.  Sure enough, Kim got rejected under the premise that the Hollywood Walk of Fame does not accept reality television stars.  Television stars, yes, but not reality television stars.


I tend to agree, especially when you think about the people that are on the strip.  Putting a reality tv star next to Marilyn Monroe, Meryl Streep, or Michael Douglas is probably not a fair comparison.  But it was very interesting to see the organization draw a line in the sand by not accepting Kim, perhaps the biggest of all reality tv stars.  Surely there's money to be made here, but instead the organization stuck to their principles; stuck to their brand.

As the lines blurr, that's something that gets harder and harder to do.  Kim has been modeling, so I guess that doesn't count.  She's certainly an entrepreneurial brand unto herself, but that doesn't count either.  If she starts making movie appearances, then maybe they will great her a star?  Evidently, yes.  Because part of the organization's response was that they would be happy to review her application again when she gets a real acting job.  Hmmmm.

I'm all for staying on brand.  I think the Hollywood Walk of Fame certainly did stayed to theirs.  It must hurt, though, when Kermit the Frog and Lassie have one, no?!?

What do you think?  What's your experience?  Jim.

Jim Joseph
President, Cohn & Wolfe NA
Author, The Experience Effect series
Professor, NYU

PS - Will Kim receive an Emmy this Sunday night?  We'll sure be tweeting about it at #EmmyExp, Sunday night 9/23 at 6:30EST.  Join us!

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