Nepotism remains a controversial subject

April 1, 2023

Nepotism has existed since the dawn of the entertainment industry with actors like Maurice Barrymore, the great-grandfather of actress and talk-show host Drew Barrymore, and Judy Garland, The Wizard of Oz actress and mother of actress Liza Minelli. Many actors, models, and singers most famous in Hollywood have parents in the industry. While nepotism is nothing new, in recent years, social media has sparked conversations about the relationship between nepotism and hard work.

Nepotism provides many evident benefits for the children of celebrities wanting to begin careers in the entertainment industry, especially financially. For an ordinary individual, jobs in the art and entertainment industry seem unrealistic. Work opportunities tend to be limited, and financial stability is never guaranteed. However, for people born into illustrious families, there’s minimal risk in pursuing an acting, singing, or modeling career. They will likely encounter more job opportunities, and if they find a lack of success in the industry, their parents can support them. For the typical person, seeking a career as an entertainer is a financial gamble, while children of well-known public figures usually have a safety net.

Famous individuals in the entertainment industry undoubtedly also have more connections that they can use to the advantage of their children. Renowned figures will know the best coaches that the average person would never have access to. Many celebrities have connections with directors, producers, and filmmakers that they can use to give their children the best chance for success.

However, when entertainers have parents with such esteemed reputations, it often places pressure on them to live up to their parents’ names. Many celebrities have voiced that they have had to work twice as hard to make an identity for themselves instead of falling into their parents’ shadows.

Kendall Jenner, a model and daughter of Kris and Caitlyn Jenner, said on the Keeping Up With the Kardashians reunion, “Of course, I had a platform, and I never took that for granted, but that almost made my job a little bit harder because people didn’t want to hire me because I was on a reality show. I took my last name off of my modeling cards so that I was taken completely seriously.”

Other celebrities have taken a satirical approach to nepotism claims. Hailey Bieber, a model and daughter of Stephen Baldwin, a director, actor, and producer, went viral on Twitter after wearing a shirt with the words “nepo baby” displayed on it.

While nepotism bestows certain advantages, that does not mean those who benefit all fall short in talent. Many “nepotism babies” are very skilled in their fields and have worked hard to develop their careers. Fans simply want celebrities impacted by nepotism to acknowledge the upper hand they have in the industry.

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