It’s probably become one of the most famous mugshots in history. The eyes. The slight cock of the head. It’s Jeremy Meeks, the “hot convict” that had social media users promising to overlook his rap sheet in exchange for doing a little time with him.
Of course, upon seeing the positive reaction to the photo, Meeks got himself a publicist. And for a problematic client like him, there could only be one publicist for the job: “D-List publicist” Gina Rodriguez. A former adult movie actress and Playboy model, now she works with people who usually end up with a catchy moniker: “Octomom” Nadya Suleman and the “White House party crashers” Michaele and Tareq Salahi.
Now, she tells The Daily Beast that she’s working to find Meeks a reality TV show.
All in a day’s work (and please call her “celebrity manager”).
Not every client is going to be a Fortune 500 company or high-minded philanthropic cause. Still,most PR firms large and small want to build a reputation for doing good work for people and organizations that aren’t going to flame out as these people inevitably will. Moreover, there’s some that would argue that you don’t get to flex a whole lot of PR muscle working with a client who’s a momentary curiosity. There are only so many different ways to package someone who became famous for being handsome while arrested.
Sometimes, even in this line of work, there are some clients who are more marketable than others. In The Daily Beast story, she talks about the trouble with representing Octomom after the initial flood of interest.
“As much as we would try and try to get them into the family’s life—all these types of people—they have so much baggage that they come with, [the press] is watching their lives with a microscope, so anything they do, the press can turn, you know, horrible[...].”
Of course, this makes you wonder what Rodriguez is doing for the an industry in which credibility is always an issue. Probably not too much.
Then again, she’s such a rarity that perhaps she, too, would fall into the same category as her clients: a person who kind of stumbled into a bit of infamy and is using it to her advantage as much as possible.