Digital Hollywood

Anyone who has been to Hollywood will tell you it is over-rated. It is nothing like the Desperate Housewives set you crave to see, the Beverly Hills 90210 streets you desire or the action-packed streets of 24 where cars get blown up every hour while Jack Bauer jumps from helicopter to cars, like a kid playing hopscotch. Hollywood, is like any other North American cities. Its people are just like you, me and Dupree. Druggies, rich families, artists, wannabes, homeless, illegal immigrants, professionals…everyone makes Hollywood home.

But Hollywood is also a celluloid factory. It churns ideal images of the perfect life, the perfect look within their perfect shows. Even if it is a tragedy, the show it produces has a closure, very unlike life where we have to wait. After all, a story has to close within the hour, the episode or the series. It has to have a story arc, a conflict, a resolution, at least 2 cliffhangers before commercials, and a sub-plot to keep the main story compelling. It is very unreal, it burns hundreds of brain cells in finance negotiations, hours of scripting and filming, tonnes of caffeine, nicotine to sustain the long hours of postproduction and yes – that’s not inclusive of the campaign pre-release.

I have a theory about blogs. It is – the new digital Hollywood. A few years ago (or was it last year?) a gf shared with me that she had coyly asked a blogger (who is well known in the c to write very sunny, my life is perfect stories in her blog) why she writes the way she does. Her answer was simple – “Because I want people to think my life is perfect!”. I can be up in arms in a second with that kind of shallow response, but I respect the girl for her honesty.

My SIL has made it very clear to me why she does not blog (but she lurks! Ahah! 😉 , and that’s because she does not like the idea of an open diary. I agree with her. A diary to me is about heart-to-pen (excuse the pen, you can also read it as ‘hard’ to pen). I don’t like the idea of writing your ENTIRE life for everyone to read, but I don’t like sunny-side up types of writing either. Writers who are like that make me question more – like, hmmm...I wonder what your life is REALLY like. Are you hiding something?

So the blogsphere to me is a digital Hollywood because it can create the celluloid ideal. (Technically that word ‘celluloid’ cannot be used here lah). People read, get excited over ‘perfection’ written by thousands of writers and then fantasise. Isn’t that what Hollywood does to us? Hands up those who hate watching a BBC documentary because it is all grim facts sans the music. See.

Having said that, there are tonnes of money in digital Hollywood. Which is why I cannot wait to hear what the pundits say in this conference.


  1. quick question – wadda hell the bunga got to do with the story ni? usually got lah some linkage (even if it’s as bizarre as a tape measure symbolising time or smthg like that – nope, didnt get it that time either, thot it was a ruler.. heh)but this one, hmmm… momok#1

  2. Dear Momok #1,

    I thought the flowers would symbolise all things rosy – like what some digital Hollywoodies want their posts to symbolise.

    You didn’t get it eh…aiyaa…leceh lah. Drop that law degree,quit the bank, come to Vancouver and shop!

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