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Friday, February 1, 2013

Celebrities and Policy Advocacy

As we note in the textbook, Hollywood figures often use their celebrity to draw attention to policy causes.  The latest example is Bradley Cooper of Silver Linings Playbook.  In the movie, he did a splendid job of portraying a man with bipolar disorder, but he has no expertise in mental health issues.

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The Washington Post suggests a more cynical explanation for his appearances in Washington:
Was this all about using a star to promote a cause — or using a cause to promote a “Silver Linings” Oscar campaign? The invisible hand of media-savvy executive producer Harvey Weinsteinseems to be at work in Cooper’s last-minute advocacy blitz, a week before ballots go to Academy members. But the mental-health professionals seemed thrilled with the turnout (about 100 people spilling out of the room) and the media exposure.