‘This sucks. I want to go back to being famous’: Kevin Bacon’s experiment as a ‘regular person’

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Immersive research into the everyday lives of normal people conducted by the actor Kevin Bacon has arrived at a startling conclusion: it’s not as good as being a celebrity.

Speaking to Vanity Fair, Bacon said he had long hankered after the anonymity of the everyman, so commissioned a prosthetics specialist to enable him to do so.

“I’m not complaining,” he said, “but I have a face that’s pretty recognisable. Putting my hat and glasses on is only going to work to a certain extent.”

He continued: “I went to a special effects makeup artist, had consultations, and asked him to make me a prosthetic disguise.”

Kitted out with fake teeth, a different nose and a pair of glasses, the actor trialled his new look at a shopping mall in Los Angeles called The Grove. To his delight, he discovered that “nobody recognised me”.

Yet the newfound freedom soon palled as Bacon discovered the downsides of invisibility.

“People were kind of pushing past me, not being nice,” he said. “Nobody said, ‘I love you.’ I had to wait in line to buy a fucking coffee or whatever. I was like, This sucks. I want to go back to being famous.”

Bacon, now 65, made his screen debut 46 years ago, in National Lampoon’s Animal House, before starring in the likes of Diner, Footloose, A Few Good Men, JFK, The River Wild and Tremors. He has also featured in films such as The Woodsman, Patriots Day and TV series I Love Dick and City on a Hill.

His industry ubiquity spawned the parlour game Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, which challenges players to trace anyone in showbiz back to Bacon in six names or fewer.

Other celebrities rumoured to have gone undercover using similar strategies include Ellen DeGeneres (as a keen shopper), Daniel Radcliffe (as a dog walker), Arnold Schwarzenegger (as a gym instructor) and Chris Pratt (as a Chris Pratt lookalike).

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Meanwhile celebrities who have admitted to enjoying the trappings of notoriety include Noel Gallagher, Catherine Deneuve and Billie Eilish.

In 2019, Christina Ricci declared: “I’m not going to lie, I like being famous. I like being well respected. I like that people don’t laugh when they hear my name. I like being able to get tables at restaurants and discounts on clothes. My life is exactly the life that I wanted for myself.”

Source: theguardian.com

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