Are You Smarter than Celebrities?


What would you do if your house was going to start on fire?

If you said, “Stay in there,” then I am afraid you are dumb. If you said, “Get the hell out of there,” then you are mere steps away from being the third smartest person in Hollywood!

Do you have any talent? Anything will do, we will spin it…

Gooood… Now, the tough one… Do you have anything to do with Hollywood?

What? No?!? You idiot! Sorry, you are not one of Entertainment Weekly’s 50 Smartest People in Hollywood, just be happy to know that you wouldn’t stay inside a burning home.

Seriously though, have any of you checked out EW’s list dubbing 50 Hollywood-type as the “Smartest People in Hollywood”? It reads like a love note to the almighty bank account. Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be an exact criteria to being included on the list outside of “learning from your mistakes” (Ben Affleck), playing “Queen Elizabeth I and Bob Dylan in the same year” (Cate Blanchett), believing “movies should do more than make a profit” (Jeff Skoll), overseeing a staff of 25 people (Mary Zophres), making “torture porn look cool” (Tim Palen), discovering “the real value of fame” (Angelina Jolie), refusing “to conform to conventional ideas of female stardom” (Jodie Foster) and mastering “the art of steady leadership” (Stacey Snider).

Those are a few selections from numbers 26-50, and for the most part I actually agree with some of them, albeit none of the ones I mentioned. Since when does acting make you smart? I know of at least five studios that are wondering how Jeff Skoll plans on making any moneyin movies if he isn’t making them for profit, and I am sure there are several working class managers that will look at Ms. Zophres and her team of 25 and laugh.

Smart to me has to do with intelligence, not talent. EW’s list seems focused on people that are good at something, not necessarily smart. Angelina Jolie is smart because she helps people? I would say that makes her a good person, not a smart person. I am not saying she is dumb, I have no idea. I am willing to wager she probably is quite intelligent, but splicing in a few celebrities with a list of the folks that actually make Hollywood run (agents, presidents, producers, etc.) is silly and just a means to draw people to your list. Sacha Baron Cohen is smart because he made Borat? No, he is funny. Because Dane Cook isn’t funny does that make him dumb? Don’t answer that. Continuing on the Sacha Baron Cohen front, he actually is probably quite smart considering he graduated from the University of Cambridge. Yet, he falls 14 places below UCLA dropout Ben Stiller.

The top 25 begins here, give it a peek and tell me you disagree with me and believe these people truly are the smartest people in Hollywood.

I guess my biggest problem with the list is that it is an opinion piece with a title that suggests fact without explanation. On top of that the placement is horrible, teh discrepancy I mention with regard to Cohen and Stiller pretty much makes the whole list worthless. Are these people smart? Probably. Are they the smartest? In comparison to the piece’s writers… Definitely.