Nadia Padayachi

SA celebs have lost the plot

2004-11-12 12:48

We've (slowly) begun to cultivate our own celebrity industry of emerging talent, but zooming in on the action, I don't think we're heading in the right direction.

Lack-lustre reality TV stars are churned out by the dozen, with TV execs desperately seeking the next "big thing".

An abundance of models provide the necessary eye-candy, sporting a half-baked soap or rugby star on their bony-hips.

Together they crack the headlines or at least make it to page three. Sports personalities have long been in the spotlight and some even make admirable role models, such as Natalie du Toit.

But our local sports scene is so clouded, it seems that all too often the game is forgotten and the politics take over.

It's one thing to be famous, but what now?

The admiration needs to be used appropriately, not for Joost's infomercial on ab-tightening pills or Derek's hair-gain laser treatment.

The limelight is a gift by the public, not a method to make as much money as possible before your career fizzles.

There's a fine line between furthering your career and being a vulture to every opportunity.

Have our celebrities lost all sense of social responsibility?

Fame and recognition is an offshoot of a successful career based on hard work and talent.

The real reward is in further opportunities to showcase that talent, whether it's on stage or in a stadium.

But why are we so hungry to have people know who we are? Perhaps it helps to get the next job and adds more pressure to postponing that bad hair day.

Just how much talent lies behind the pretty faces adorning our magazines and newspapers? You'll find a Vanessa Carreira at every social event - they're needed as an endorsement of the event's success, never mind that 600 other guests are enjoying themselves.

It astonishes me that we have an award where Kuli Roberts gets named "Social butterfly of the Year" like its some type of job.

Is it really that hard to find suitable South African role models?

We have a rich history and a society which is slowly starting to adopt the stance that if the government isn't going to help them, we can make things happen for ourselves.

Perhaps this isn't glamorous enough or doesn't meet with the definition of celebrity. I'm sure that there are many Nkensani Manganyi's (clothing designer) in our country. Beautiful, glamorous people who had certain principles way before they stepped into the public eye, and continue to live by them.

The public needs to be made aware that they hold more power than is acknowledged.

Your response to the faces littering the social pages is their ticket in or out... but let's face it, who can resist Victoria Beckham's thigh flab?

Stop the world, I wanna get off!

  • Nadia Padayachi is a publicist at a Cape Town publicity agency. She loves a good skinder at any opportunity.

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