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Film / Celebrity

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Celebrity is a 1998 comedy-drama film written and directed by Woody Allen.

Lee Simon (Kenneth Branagh) is an unsuccessful novelist turned travel writer who immerses himself in celebrity journalism following a midlife crisis and subsequent divorce from his insecure wife, former English teacher Robin (Judy Davis). However, as he stumbles his way through both professional encounters and sexual escapades with performers, models, and other players in the world of entertainment, Lee ruins numerous opportunities due to his fame-seeking, insecurities and neuroses. Meanwhile, Robin leaves her many neuroses behind and is led to success.


This film contains examples of:

  • Adam Westing: Most of the people appearing in cameos in the film play exaggerated versions of themselves based on their public reputation, even if their characters go by another name. Examples include Leonardo DiCaprio as a hard-partying teen idol, Winona Ryder appearing as a slightly awkward actress being coached in the art of seducing (in reference to the many "inocence lost" characters she played at the time), and Donald Trump planning to buy St. Patrick's Cathedral and knock it down.
  • Author Avatar: Kenneth Branagh's character Lee Simon is clearly an avatar for Woody Allen and his trademark neurotic characters. Robin also seems to ape some Allen mannerisms at the beginning, making her a sort of Distaff Counterpart.
  • Deliberately Monochrome: As many other Woody Allen films, the film is deliberately in black and white.
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  • Hourglass Plot: Lee starts up wanting to immerse himself in celebrity journalism thinking that it will bring him success, while his ex-wife Robin is insecure on top of the neuroses the couple had. As the movie progresses, Lee doesn't get out of his neuroses and starts becoming as insecure as his ex-wife was, which wrecks numerous opportunities for him to succeed, while Robin leaves her many neuroses behind and gets a makeover that eventually led her to her own celebrity interview program.


Example of: