Celebritology 101: Celebrity Secrets Revealed!
Thanks to the proliferation of breathless blogs covering the sort of things we here in Celebritology 101 use as our primary syllabi material, we live in an age of instant gratification when it comes to getting a fresh whiff of the dirty laundry generated by our celebrity lab rats.
One can hardly turn on a cable news channel or even safely check one's e-mail box without learning -- seemingly within hours, if not minutes -- that Britney Spears has whaled on a SUV with an umbrella, that Paris Hilton reportedly accessorizes her bathroom with big piles of "white powder" or that Scientology (as practiced by celebrities) is, like, weird.
One almost forgets that there was a time when the Hollywood spin machine was able to keep scandalous revelations -- like sexuality, child abuse, substance abuse and even run-of-the-mill partying -- far away from the ears of consumers. This climate allowed for delayed revelations, like Rock Hudson -- whose homosexuality was kept out of the headlines for decades -- or Cary Grant, who wrote in his autobiography that LSD brought him inner peace during the early 1960s.
In his new book, "Celebrity Secrets," author Nick Redfern (who usually writes about UFOs and ETs) has used the Freedom of Information Act to mine government records on stars. Despite rehashed tales about Marilyn Monroe and Frank Sinatra, the book does offer some interesting details about the real lives of some larger-than-life names of yesteryear.
A few of the more interesting tidbits:
-- According to J. Edgar Hoover, comedian Lou Costello reportedly kept a "massive porn stash" and had extensive ties to the mob.
-- Jimi Hendrix was discharged from the Army for, among other things,
mastering failing to master his own domain.
-- The FBI took a special interest in Rock Hudson because of his plans to play an FBI agent on film.
If you're interested in the above or finding out why the government was interested in folks like John Denver, Lucille Ball, John Wayne and Sonny Bono, read the book.
| March 6, 2007; 10:43 AM ET
Categories: Celebritology 101
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