Celebrities were quick to understand that paparazzi could make icons of them. The more a star is followed and admired, the greater the adulation. So they raised the stakes, sometimes hiding when they don't even need to. Today, stardom is more ephemeral and it's photography that gives them their celebrity status.
I remember saying goodbye to my father the night he left to join the Navy. He didn't have to. He was older than other servicemen and had a family to support but he wanted to be a part of the fight against fascism, not just make movies about it. I admired this about him.
As a younger actor you want to be approved of, you want to gain respect, be admired. All of those things. To say: 'This is me playing this character. And aren't I fantastic!' I don't feel that so much now.
Some of the most important people in my life would be shocked to learn that they were role models. They weren't celebrities, or even particularly accomplished. But they had some quality that I admired, that made me want to be like them.
One of the most depressing features of the ethical side of the matter is that instead of such methods arousing contempt they are more or less openly admired. And this is logical. Canonise 'business success,' and men who made a success like that of the Standard Oil Trust become national heroes!
In our world of big names, curiously, our true heroes tend to be anonymous. In this life of illusion and quasi-illusion, the person of solid virtues who can be admired for something more substantial than his well-knownness often proves to be the unsung hero: the teacher, the nurse, the mother, the honest cop, the hard worker at lonely, underpaid, unglamorous, unpublicized jobs.