Episode 111: Paparazzi: Stalkers or Journalists?

This episode is brought to you by El Yucateco

This episode of the Sofa King Podcast focuses on the paparazzi. The name comes from a Fellini film’s character (who was a sleazy, annoying photographer named Paparazzo). The term really came to prominence with the grandfather of the medium, Ron Galella, the paparazzi who stalked Jaqueline Onassis and made a fortune selling photos of her (and was even assaulted by her Secret Service body guards).

So what makes the paparazzi tick? Money, of course. So we look at how much they make on each photograph and the lengths they go to get the shot. There are really interesting examples of car crashes (the death of Lady Dianna was attributed to a high speed chase to escape the paparazzi), and there are really interesting examples of celebrities who strike back. Sean Penn is the most famous of these, so tune in to see how far he went to get a paparazzi out of his hotel room—it is a straight up felony!

Many celebrities use the paparazzi for their own gain, however; it isn’t just paparazzi being sleazy. For example, give us a listen to find out which celebrities actually tip off specific photographers in order to get a percentage of the money the pictures will sell for. How much do paparazzi make for a good photo? What is TMZ and how have the (d)evolved the situation? How violent does the job get? Who is responsible for getting the “pedorrazi” from being able to profit from photos of celebrity babies? And most importantly, which stars have been tackled and had their crotch motor boated by a crazy Ukrainian paparazzi prankster? Listen, laugh, learn.

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