‘Gossip Girl’ a ‘hit’ without breaking the top 100? Gimme a break

Do you have any idea how much wildly overstated or patently false Hollywood hype we have heaped on us every day. Any idea?

I’ve covered entertainment for major daily newspapers for many years, so I have a sense of this. And while most people probably hear, see, digest, file away and accept the latest show-biz news, I, at least, am continually amazed and dismayed at the phoniness of so much misinformation spewing from Hollywood, and not just from studios who oversell their products, but from entertainment “journalists” who should know better.

The problem, for many of them, is that they fawn. They are so enamored by fame and celebrity that they treat it like an untouchable treasure to be admired from a distance and hardly ever scrutinized with any intensity. When stars say they couldn’t make a movie due to “scheduling conflicts,” no one ever asks, “Oh, so the script turned out to suck, right?” They just lap it up and repeat it. And when an E! reporter goes on a set, he only lobs softball questions that allow the cast to gush about how great they all are.

And take today’s IMDB News from WENN, a string of celeb gossip items. One refers to Blake Lively’s show Gossip Girl as “her TV hit.” Uh, Gossip Girl isn’t even in the top 100-rated shows. That’s a hit? And while it does better online, that’s not what the WENN item says. Nope, it’s a “TV hit.”

Another item refers to Scarlett Johansson’s film Girl With the Pearl Earring as a “hit period movie.” Well, let’s see: The film made a total of $11 million domestically, which is better than some movies. But with a star like Johansson, that probably was barely enough to cover production costs, much less marketing costs. And according to boxofficemojo.com, the film ranked 131st at the box office for 2003. Finishing in 131st place constitutes a hit?

And so it goes. Lies, pandering, phoniness, hype and endless ill-earned huzzahs.

Hey, enjoy your entertainment. In this economy, at least it’s something. But don’t buy too much of what you read or hear from entertainment “reporters,” because in many, many cases it’s either exaggerated or just not true. But here’s one accurate news flash: By definition, everything can’t be a “hit.”

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