One may be the loneliest number, but in Hollywood two people together can cause absolute pandemonium, with enough media buzz to jump-start both stars' careers.
Take, for example, Spice Girl Victoria Beckham. She might be nothing more than a has-been pop star, no more newsworthy than, say, the 1980s band Bananarama. But thanks to her hotshot, sexy, soccer-playing husband, David, Posh Spice is tabloid royalty.
Let's face it, would all these other famous twosomes, such as TomKat, be so hot to trot over to Vic's house if she just married a plumber from Tarzanna? Probably not. But her relationship has scored her a reality TV special and plenty of press. Is there anything there — is there really anything she has to share?
If sharing is caring, then the gorgeous J. Lo, whose star power eclipses that of all mere mortals and most celebs, is a serial caregiver. After her first marriage to an unknown went fairly unnoticed, Jennifer Lopez, the modern-day equivalent of Liz Taylor, decided to up the dating decibel to a roar.
First, she dated P. Diddy, who helped hype her hip-hop career by giving her the urban street cred necessary to blow up her brand with fragrance and fashion lines. Once the ghetto-glamorous girl realized all that glittered was not gold with her bad boy, her personal fantasy became a public PR nightmare with police chases, guns and courtroom drama. She was back in Hollywood, leaving the West Side story in a New York minute for a more bankable Beantown boy: Ben Affleck.
Though Affleck had his own box-office bling bling (Oscar calling), he didn't win points or major awards for the movies — "Gigli" and "Jersey Girl" — he made while with J. Lo. The first was a box-office embarrassment; the second, a public catastrophe.
While the world drowned in the overexposed and oversaturation of "Bennifer," J. Lo was sapped of her movie star power and Affleck publicly dissed and distanced himself from her.
One would hope that once burned, twice cautious. J. Lo hoped that the third time doing a movie with a leading man — this time, husband Marc Anthony — would be the charm. And it did seem that audiences were enchanted with "El Cantante." But the film didn't do well at the box office and got mixed reviews for a plethora of faults.
Which raises the questions: Do we know too much about our stars today? Does all the tabloid coverage of the personal lives of Hollywood's A-list make us less inclined to care about what they do onscreen or in the studio?
Madonna is another diva adept at finding a talented leading man/director, but her celeb couplings bring no mojo at the movie theater. In 1986, she made the flop "Shanghai Surprise" with then-hubby Sean Penn. Guy Ritchie probably wishes his movie with Madonna, "Swept Away," would get swept away into a garbage bin in Maui.
Though Warren Beatty pumped up Madonna's persona and power with "Dick Tracy" and a cameo in her concert, biopic "Truth or Dare," he outed her style of thrusting herself in front of cameras constantly and conspicuously with no real gain or acclaim of thespian credit.
The other day in an interview, Leonardo DiCaprio told Oprah Winfrey that he liked to keep his personal life a secret to keep a bit of believability in the characters he portrays. Let's face it, he's believable and successful, so I guess he got that point right. Maybe other Hollywood hotties should follow his example.