Why are people so obsessed with celebrity lives and drama? It seems we can’t help but fawn over idealised lifestyles, and those who have them. By living vicariously through the twists and turns of the celebrity life, perhaps the everyday monotony of those with ‘regular’ lives seems a bit more bearable. After all, a neverending supply of glamorous, exciting celebrities exists exactly because there is a demand for these celebrities – the public create that demand.
This also means that those in control of celebrity images profit from spinning tales of intrigue and following the desires of the public, no matter how unrealistic those are. The public will believe just about whatever it wants to believe, if the fantasy is exciting enough. When it comes to Hollywood couples, those in the spotlight seem to be a mix of fairy tale images and train wrecks; of course, both of these sides to the coin bring shameless joy to the public. Sure, high profile A-List relationships will attract attention both in good times and in bad, but what of those relationships fabricated for exactly that purpose – to attract our attention? The following celebrity relationships have all raised just such credibility issues; some more than others, but that just adds to the intrigue for their fans.
10. Vanessa Hudgens and Zac Efron
These two High School Musical stars were on the front page of every celebrity magazine when they were dating. Tweenage fans wanted to see the on-screen couple together in real life, and by accident – or, more likely, design – the fans got what they wanted. Efron and Hudgens were quite touchy-feely on camera, as captured by the paparazzi – but off camera? Cynics weren’t convinced.
The producers of High School Musical may have set the pair up, or they could have been doing it on their own for publicity. Either way, their relationship seems to have been a crowd pleaser. When they officially split, heartbroken fans lamented over their fate for weeks. Conveniently, the High School Musical trilogy had recently ended.
9. Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson
Yet another couple teenagers around the globe wanted to happen, Twilight stars Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson were a match made in heaven among their young fans, and the enigmatic couple gained plenty of publicity for the films.
The two kept the fans guessing, but as the Twilight movies wound down, it seemed the couple confirmed their romantic involvement. Yet, soon after going public with their relationship, Kirsten quickly “cheated” on R Pattz while filming Snow White and the Huntsman. Really, it seems likely that these two were only ever just in a staged relationship to help the franchise’s publicity. Indeed, in Summer 2014 Pattinson commented on the cheating scandal, seeming surprisingly insouciant about the incident; “S**t happens, you know? And really, who gives a s**t?”
8. Ryan Seacrest and Julianne Hough
While Ryan Seacrest was being bombarded by gay rumors, he became involved with Dancing with the Stars dancer Julianne Hough. The public relationship caused the rumors to subside, but no one really fully believed that they were together. Especially after they broke up, and Ryan bizarrely bought Julianne a “breakup” present – a $3 million mansion. If people thought their relationship may be fake before, they certainly believed it after that.
If Ryan is actually gay, most believe he should just be himself – after all, his sexuality should have no impact on his career as a charismatic presenter and producer. Really though, faking a relationship and then parting with a huge payout doesn’t seem like the best plan to avoid rumors either.
7. Taylor Swift and Harry Styles
Harry seems to have been the boy behind several of Taylor’s recent songs, including the hit “I Knew You Were Trouble” and the less subtle “Style” on her latest album, but their relationship benefited the two of them beyond a few songs.
The whole thing may have been a publicity stunt to gain more exposure for the two artists. Because of Taylor’s huge fame, and the obsessively dedicated ‘Directioners’, it worked. Speculation ensued, and fans analysed all of Swift’s new releases for messages about their relationship. Apparently, pairing two of the most popular young artists together is highly beneficial for both parties; who knew?
6. Shailene Woodley and Theo James
Much like certain Twilight stars, many teenagers want to see the leading Divergent couple to get together. As soon as one teen series ends, another rises, complete with Hollywood love interests to keep the public entertained. There are already rumors flying about this couple, who seem to have great chemistry, on and off the camera. Woodley “accidentally” touching James’ leg on television is certainly helping rumours along. It’s interesting that what the public wants in turns of relationships seem to happen in Hollywood… At least for a while.
5. Rob Kardashian and Rita Ora
This famous couple never seemed to be incredibly genuine in their relationship. But following their breakup, Ora stated in an interview, “I never thought it was actually a relationship,” claiming that the two were never officially boyfriend and girlfriend. This came after Rob accused her of cheating on him on Twitter. Either one of the them had the wrong idea about the relationship, or it was a fake from the beginning. Whichever it is, the split seems to have been ugly on both sides – much to the public’s satisfaction, of course.
4. Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez
These two were definitely the cutest couple in Hollywood according to thousands of fans, but was their relationship ever genuine? Right from the beginning, when the two just happened to be caught on camera together in Miami, to when photos leaked of them kissing in what appeared to be staged photos, rumors have abounded. Almost any shot of them together looked like an attempt at a movie photo shoot.
This relationship, while highly anticipated by the public, was probably just a publicity stunt, which worked in much the same way all the others did. It gained serious media attention and, consequently, profits.
3. Katy Perry and Riff Raff
No one really believes that these two are serious, do they? Outlandish rapper Riff Raff and kooky singer Perry got serious attention when they showed up at the VMA red carpet wearing full denim outfits in a parody of the infamous Spears-Timberlake red carpet disaster. Attention was undoubtedly want they wanted from the interaction. Despite tweets claiming that they went on a date the pair is just too unbelievable for anyone to consider them being in a bona fide relationship. And even if they did get together, would they be likely to last?
3. Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes
Rumours about TomKat’s ‘marriage contract’ abounded from the time the very public couple announced their engagement. Cruise has long been rumoured to be gay, which if true could – unfortunately – limit his scope as the heartthrob leading man. His attempts to keep his supposed sexual preferences under wraps have been some of the biggest conspiracy theories in Hollywood – and have led to an amusing South Park skit, of course.
It was reported by The Village Voice that several women were approached before Holmes regarding a proposed five year marriage contract that would help their careers and would see a huge payout – with a bonus if they bore his child – and some candidates were vetted by the Church of Scientology before Holmes was ‘selected’. This rumour was compounded by Cruise’s bizarre couch-jumping behaviour on Oprah, when he announced his love for Holmes. And the fact that five years after their marriage, Holmes filed for divorce – right on cue.
1. Kim Kardashian and Kanye West
How could these two be in a fake relationship? They even have a baby together! It really is not that far fetched. The two celebs are profiting immensely from their relationship, and everyone knows how much they both crave publicity and money. Kim has been said to “bash” Kanye behind his back, saying that she is “disgusted” with him and his behaviour. But if she gets a lot of money from the relationship, she doesn’t seem to mind him all that much. It’s hard to say how long their relationship will last, but if Kim’s record is anything to go by it’s safe to say it will end – and in the most dramatic way possible. These two need to stay in the spotlight, both to gain their much wanted attention and to rake in the cash.