Pop princess Selena Gomez learned the pitfalls of being exploited by fame hungry parents when she was brutally violated by the paparazzi at the age of fifteen or sixteen. Gomez recalls to Business of Fashion how her carefree world of teen prostitution crumbled around her when she realized that grown men were photographing her in a bikini while at the beach.
I remember feeling really violated when I was younger, even just being on the beach. I was maybe 15 or 16 and photographers were taking pictures. I felt very violated and I didn’t like or understand it, and that felt very weird because I was a young girl and they were grown men. I didn’t like that feeling. Then, I would say the last season of my show, I was probably 18 years old, is when I felt like the flip happened. I didn’t feel like it was about my art as much.
Disney and Nickelodeon execs slap tube tops on prepubescent stars before throwing them to the wolves and counting their pimp money. I actually imagine them sitting around the board room table wearing Party City pimp costumes. Parents of these future drug addicts of America pretend that they’re setting up their kids for success. And mothers pretend that their husbands (Billy Ray Cyrus) don’t want to pork their daughters. There’s no business like show business.
Gomez’s revelation that people were interested in her looks disrupted what was an otherwise innocent childhood. Apparently, and I’m still crunching the numbers on this, audiences prefer attractive stars. And tend to sexualize celebrities when they dress like they’re auditioning in Hot Girls Wanted. Gomez learned the hard way:
When I was younger, [work] was all fun to me. When I did state fairs and 100 people would show up, I would be stoked…But when I got older, I started to become exposed to the truth behind some stuff and that’s when it flipped a little bit. I realised that, “Oh, this is actually really hard and kind of slimy in certain areas.” I didn’t realise that certain people wanted certain things from me. My confidence went through a lot with that.
The entertainment industry “slimy?” Audiences developing volatile, demanding relationships with celebrities? Complain about the excessive media attention to the ghost of Lindsay Lohan strung out on a billionaire Russian sex trafficker’s yacht. Here’s an older and wiser Gomez writhing around on the kitchen floor in her music video for Fetish, sending a clear message to future generations of starlets: Modesty sells.
Photo Credit: Selena Gomez ‘Fetish’ YouTube