Most celebrities only have to be "on" for a few minutes of any given day, which is what makes following the paparazzi so beguiling. These are the guys who do anything they can to peek behind the curtain and pass along the news. We who consider ourselves "savvy" are sure the reality is not what we see. But where, exactly, lie the discrepancies?
The celebrities that blur that line the most are the ones who succeed best. Some do it by keeping the definitions clean: Lady Gaga, Charlie Sheen. But others are somewhat more sophisticated -- adept -- at the art: Alec Baldwin, say.
Here are Lee Siegel's thoughts on the sharpest of the Baldwin Boys -- and some astute observations on the nature of American celebrity in general.