The Price of Fame Essay

Brittany Murphy – also known as Brittany Anne Murphy-Monjack was born on the 10th November 1977 and died on the 20th December 2009, aged 33. Murphy was an American actress, as well as a singer and had appeared in a number of well-known movies, such as Clueless, 8 Mile and Sin City.

During the 1990s, Brittany Murphy was in a band named Blessed Soul. She also released a track with the producer Paul Oakenfold in 2006, ‘Faster Kill Pussycat’ – which went on to become a top 10 hit around the world. She landed her first job in Hollywood at the tender age of 14 when she won a starring role playing Brenda Drexell in Drexell’s Class.Brittany arrived in Hollywood full of talent and promise but struggled to reach her full potential during her short lived life due to the suffering of her inner demons. Throughout her young life, Brittany Murphy was overwhelmed by rumors of eating disorders and drug abuse. She was often seen as dazed and confused on the red carpet of movie premiers but still managed to look beautiful – quite a transformation she had made since being thrust into the limelight as a chubby awkward teen in the 1995 hit movie – Clueless.As Brittany gained stardom her weight started to drastically drop, which sparked the rumors of an eating disorder. After her role in 8-Mile with Eminem in 2002, her successful career seemed to stall.

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During 2005 the star was constantly questioned about the rumors of drug use to which her response was – “Just for the record I have never tried it in my entire life. I am also way too high-strung. I can’t even take a Sudafed.

Can you imagine? My god, I think my heart would explode. ” Brittany was a typical Hollywood stereotype and to the public that literally is all they see.They witness the exterior and judge you no matter what the interior looks like. Group identity is more complicated than a stereotype. She constantly made sacrifices to gain an elevated status in life such as damaging her body and living off a diet of drugs. In life we tend to amend our identities to fit in and please others as we want to come across more desirable. Celebrities are bombarded by paparazzi every second of their life.

They search for a long wanted private domain, not everyone wants to be questioned/scrutinized every second of every day and this only leads to cases such as Brittany’s.The groups to which we belong define different versions of ourself. After starring in clueless – a movie starring beautiful women only made Murphy more self conscious and brought out a version of her no one had seen before. She hit high stardom after this role and this was the group she chose to be a part of, who she wanted to associate with and in the end the people who played a part in her death. The constant worrying about her looks resulted in one big competition between herself and those people she would call her closest friends.

Most people are condemned with two versions of themselves – the one you see yourself as and the one other people see you as. This develops from the expectations of others. The pressures she felt from being a celebrity. She was a ballet dancer in her childhood which can explain the way she appeared and the possessiveness she had over her body and constant worrying about her looks. One of her close friends stated she had had “insane self-image issues”. Another friend quoted “She wore extraordinary amounts of make-up, tons of fake eyelashes, got her teeth capped, dyed her hair blonde, lost weight – she wanted to be a beauty.She didn’t want to be the fat girl from Clueless. She didn’t eat a lot.

She would drink copious amounts of coffee. ” Brittany Murphy was seen as a successful, beautiful and talented actress. Mostly we define identity through what we see.

Many people didn’t know the real her. The only things the public could witness was what she did – attend movie premiers, award ceremonies, and star in great movies. But no one could see her heart and what she was feeling like on the inside. There was a sense of deception between Brittany and the public.There are several versions of identity which change over time.

During one occasion Murphy was a healthy and happy woman, whereas at another time she was suffering from an eating disorder, which just shows the complexity to identity. Identity involves sacrifices the majority of the time, in this case Brittany’s identity resulted in her sacrificing her life as during her last interview her appearance was rail thin which prompted speculation that her death may be linked to the eating disorder – anorexia nervosa.She was scared of being rejected from the group she longed so much to be a part of. Which led to her hiding her true feelings and ultimately led her life as one big secret.

Apparently before her death Brittany was worried that she was no longer an A-list actress. A close friend of Murphy’s quoted, “Brittany was so obviously deeply troubled and couldn’t stop talking about her concerns her career was rapidly going down the tubes. ” The friend also thought that Brittany’s husband Monjack had a “negative impact on both her life and her career. After the death of Brittany it is to be believed that a laundry list of prescription drugs reportedly discovered on her bedside table included depression and anxiety medication, pain relievers and antibiotics. The loss of such a talented, funny and beautiful young human being was a tragic one to say the least.

It just shows how identity and belonging is so important in life especially when in the limelight of the public. After the death Murphy’s father was said to be “still in shock” and went on to say, “She wasn’t supposed to die like this. “