Hollywood is the city of dreams. Well-preserved actresses stride across the red carpets, amongst the bright lights, from one VIP gala to the next. Their breasts are silicone implanted, and their faces lifted until their skin is drum tight. However, Hollyworld has another side hiding behind the movie backdrop façade. A friend of mine once described driving into LA, early one morning. As he approached from the distance, he could see the city in the sunrise, surrounded by haze of golden brown fog, like a crap coloured halo.
Is it possible to be too hard on "Dreamland"? Tinseltown's history of political involvement goes back almost as far as it's ties to organized crime. California has sent 2 Presidents to the White House in recent history, and at least one of them was a professional actor. More moving is Hollywood's willingness to pay lip service to popular social causes, usually during televised award shows. I think that we all choked back a tear or two during George Clooney's "Syriana" acceptance speech, at the Oscar's. That's when he explained to the world that Hollywood can take the heat of being on the vanguard of social change, by remaining out of touch with the lives of ordinary people. Perhaps he feels the need tolive down his 1st name, shared with the current president, Curious George.
Hollywooder's interest in their efllow men is only exceeded by their very genuine concern for the innocent animals of the world. I think that we've all seen Paris Hilton tote around her minature sidekick. Now I'm not referring to Nicole Richie, but in fact her pet Chihuahua Tinkerbelle. By popularizing the breed, through making it a fashion statement, she has done more to save this unpopular dog, and endangered species, than Taco Bell did with it's series of on air ads from about ten years back. Cynics claim that Hilton treats the animal as little more than a fashion accessory. She has even misplaced the pooch on several occasions. Some even go so far as to say that the original Tinkerbelle died of neglect long ago, and that Hilton now keeps a whole stable of Tinkerbelles, as MGM once did with collies, after the original Lassie passed on.
Movie star's support of our animal friends goes far beyond fashion statements. PETA has become a cause celeb, and does real work on behalf of the animals of the world. They can count such luminaries as Kim Bassinger among their members.
When Hollywood discovered the east coast seal hunt, they were quick to pounce on this opportunity to get attention by defending under privileged animals, as well. No less a personage than Sir Paul McCartney, and his soon to be ex wife, Heather Mills, joined in the fray. I remember seeing the pictures of an uncomfortable looking Sir Paul, accompanying his headstrong missus, to eastern Canada's ice flows. He had the same pained expression on his face as men during family shopping expeditions to the local mall. It's as if he were secretly thinking to him self, "What have I gotten into this time?" He looked almost as unhappy as when he later accompanied Heather onto the Larry King Show. I don't know whether taking personal responsibility for the well being of the east coast seal herds contributed to the break up of his marriage.
Yet here again Hollywood conceals a dark secret. While glamorous stars are protesting the depletion of Canada's seal herds, they themselves are primarily responsible for it. What they don't want you to know is that Hollywood comprises the secret market for seal by product!
The basis of the protest is that it is wrong to kill animals for their fur. Canadian politicians maintain that the entire seal carcass is utilized, but can't clearly account for it. Many have speculated that there is a ‘hidden market'. Perhaps it is in China, where seal penises are used in traditional medicine. In fact there is a secret market, but much closer to home. For years Canada has been shipping seal by product to Hollywood!
The demand began in the late 70's, at the same time as California's cosmetic surgery boom. Next to the film industry, and Silicone Valley, plastic surgery is California's largest growth industry. Doctor's began by implanting aging Prima Donna's with silicone, but this had adverse side effects. Next they tried saline filled bags. These not only lacked a natural look and feel, but lead to some embarrassment, as they tended to ‘spring leaks' on the casting couch. So the search was on for a natural replacement, and animal fat proved ideal!
Plastic surgeons began injecting the breasts of aspiring young starlets with a variety of animal tissue - acquired through local pounds and SPCA's. The results were promising, but not until they chanced upon seal blubber was the ideal replacement found. The blubber of baby seals gave breasts a natural, bouncy look, and a firm, youthful feel.
When lip enhancement came into vogue, the demand for baby seal blubber skyrocketed. By injecting women's lips with the fatty animal by product, surgeons attained a realistic look, combined with a pleasing touch.
There was only one problem. Since seal fat is a natural substance, the body tends to absorb it. So the beautiful people would need periodic replenishments. As a result Hollywood couldn't kill seals fast enough! To make matters worse, plastic surgeons began promoting their all-natural collogen replacement to prospective clients. Suddenly every young actress from Anne Hathaway to Angelina Jolie were sporting smackers so large as to make their cars' air bags obsolete. Ironically, as the size of breasts and lips increased, so did the animals rights protests. Maybe this was due to Hollywood's sense of guilt, or the vague feeling that they had become hypocrites for the sake of fuller lips and firmer breasts. It might even have been an attempt to divert suspicion. Any way you look at it, though, Hollywood's breasts kept getting firmer, and lips bigger, year after year.