First it was Jennifer Aniston, now it’s Renee Zellweger…
Seems like lots of old rom com actresses are using the Huffington Post as a sad sounding board for Hollywood injustice, don’t you think? Now, some backstory: Zellweger got a lot of attention back in 2014 when she emerged after a long absence seemingly having gotten some dramatic plastic surgery. Since then, everyone has weighed in about it, wondering why she did it and why she hasn’t admitted to it. And she still won’t: her new HuffPo essay is about how she didn’t, and how the media is awful. You can read the full piece here. Here’s the important part:
In October 2014, a tabloid newspaper article reported that I’d likely had surgery to alter my eyes. It didn’t matter; just one more story in the massive smut pile generated every day by the tabloid press and fueled by exploitative headlines and folks who practice cowardly cruelty from their anonymous internet pulpits.
In the interest of tabloid journalism, which profits from the chaos and scandal it conjures and injects into people’s lives and their subsequent humiliation, the truth is reduced to representing just one side of the fictional argument. I can’t imagine there’s dignity in explaining yourself to those who trade in contrived scandal, or in seeking the approval of those who make fun of others for sport. It’s silly entertainment, it’s of no import, and I don’t see the point in commenting.
However, in our current culture of unsolicited transparency, televised dirty laundry, and folks bartering their most intimate details in exchange for attention and notoriety, it seems that the choice to value privacy renders one a suspicious character. Disingenuous. A liar with nefarious behavior to conceal. “She denies,” implies an attempt to cover up the supposed tabloid “exposed truth.” And now, as the internet story contrived for its salacious appeal to curious minds becomes the supposed truth within moments, choosing the dignity of silence rather than engaging with the commerce of cruel fiction, leaves one vulnerable not only to the usual ridicule, but to having the narrative of one’s life hijacked by those who profiteer from invented scandal.
…Not that it’s anyone’s business, but I did not make a decision to alter my face and have surgery on my eyes. This fact is of no true import to anyone at all, but that the possibility alone was discussed among respected journalists and became a public conversation is a disconcerting illustration of news/entertainment confusion and society’s fixation on physicality.
I like Renee, but I do feel like she got work done, and it’s hard to criticize media as a public figure after you look so significantly different. Ya know? And I get it, I write snark for a living. But still- she can cry into her money, or even go away again. It’s her prerogative!