About this Blog

"In the future everybody will be world-famous for 15 minutes." So said the bleached-out, late lamented artist Andy Warhol. Having lived and worked in New York City, Warhol came to fully grasp the hold celebrity has on us. In this very famous sentence, he meant to point out that in a culture fixated on fame, many people will suddenly flash brightly onto the public screen, then--poof--will just as quickly disappear from public view--like shooting stars. Other individuals derive their celebrity from one stellar accomplishment (one hit song, one iconic role, etc.) that they never again match.

This blog is devoted to the one part of our celebrity culture that no one has written much about: temporary/one-shot celebrities.

The pace of modern life has quickened, and now we hear people speaking of someone's 15 seconds of fame. These "celebrities with a lower-case c" who will appear in this blog sometimes come to us from the world of entertainment, sometimes from the world of news. All are fascinating.

The need of our communications media for a continual stream of new material assures that we will have no end of colorful people who go quickly, where celebrity is concerned, from zero to hero (or villain) and back to zero. Now you see 'em, now you don't. What a crazy world, eh?

Temporary celebrities coming from the world of entertainment include one-hit recording artists; TV and movie icons who, although they might have had a great many accomplishments in their career, are remembered for one big role; standouts of reality TV; sports figures remembered for one remarkable accomplishment; and people whose celebrity came from one big role in a commercial or print ad.

News-based temporary celebrities come in many forms: mass/serial killers, other murderers of special note, sex-crime offenders, disgraced figures of government/military/business/media/religion, spies/traitors, hoaxers, femmes/hommes fatale, heroes, whistle blowers, inventors/innovators, and victims.

Celebrity Blogsburg will consider each category in turn.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Misc.: George Lutz

Think George Lutz, and you think Amityville Horror.

Lutz, a surveyor, was the bearded man who in 1975 bought the Dutch colonial house at 112 Ocean Avenue in Amityville, New York, on Long Island, where a horrible mass murder had occurred in 1974.

The murderer, Ronald "Butch" DeFeo, shot and killed the other six members of his own family in that house.

Lutz and his family moved into the place, which they had bought for a bargain price, and claim that they began to experience stranger and stranger happenings. Places in the house, they reported, were unexplainably cold. Doors slammed, locks did odd things, footsteps were heard where no person was walking. Mrs. Lutz claimed that she had smelled perfume and was hugged from behind by a ghostly figure. The 4-year-old Lutz daughter reportedly saw a ghost named Jody. Beds banged up and down.

About a month later, the family moved out and relocated to California. Their story was the subject of a book and two movies.

Mrs. Lutz died in 2004, George at age 59 in 2006.

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