The public feels a unique combination of respect, envy and resentment toward celebrities. This is nothing new.
But thanks to the wonders of social media, we’re closer to the stars we love and hate than ever before. Now a new company wants to revolutionize the celebrity PR game via social media–and it’s making publicists and agents all over Hollywood very nervous.
What is TheAudience? It’s an alternately “stealthy” and “mysterious” startup backed and promoted by two of the biggest names in the West Coast media world: Napster/Facebook co-founder Sean Parker (who you may know as Justin Timberlake) and Hollywood super-agent Ari Emanuel (who you may know as Jeremy Piven).
But its driving force is Oliver Luckett, a former programmer, Disney PR man and full-color personality whose hobbies, according to The New York Times, include driving around LA in an Aston Martin and traveling to Iceland (our new favorite country) “to to compete against Bjork in a gingerbread house-building contest”. We like the guy already! His key selling point? He’s figured out a way around the traditional Hollywood PR system.
What does TheAudience do, exactly? The company effectively manages the social media presence of celebrities who don’t have the time (or interest) to do it themselves. But this is no automated status update machine: Team members feed fans a steady stream of content via Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Google Plus, keeping them occupied with exclusive comments, pictures and videos.
The key difference between old-school PR services and this newfangled arrangement is that the content truly does come from the celebrities themselves: