What do Britney Spears, Justin Bieber, Kim Kardashian and Jessica Simpson have in common?
They’re all famous celebrities who have their moms, or in Simpson’s case, her dad, to thank for turning them from everyday teens into superstars.
Now their path to fame – the mom and dad turned “mom-ager” or “dad-ager” – is the subject of a new reality-TV show, “Raising Fame,” on TLC.
The show, premiering Aug. 7, follows three teenaged Hollywood hopefuls who relocate to Los Angeles to try to make it as singers, actors and models.
All three, according to the show’s website, have two things in common, “a hefty obsession with fame and an overbearing manager who also happens to be her mom.”
Michelle Brown, the mother of one of the girls, aspiring singer D’lannie Brown, 18, reportedly spent $200,000 to fuel her daughter’s career.
Although D’lannie says her childhood was “taken from her” by the industry, she says her mom is not to blame.
“I’m not using my mom and my mom is not making me do this,” D’lannie told “Good Morning America.” “That was our choice together as mom and daughter and as best friends, that she would be my manager and I would be her artist.”
Michelle Brown acknowledged that working together is not always easy.
“To see her go through the struggle to say, ‘You don’t look good enough. Fix your teeth. You need to get skinnier. Your hair needs to be longer,’” Brown said.
Gary Zuckerbrod, a casting director for CSA, the Casting Society of America, says the parent-child relationship in the hunt for fame can be fraught with tension.
“You’ve got a parent that is ambitious and not managing that career properly,” Zuckerbrod said. “There could be a lot of resentment.
“No child should become an actor unless they really want it,” he added. “It’s got to be the fulfillment of a dream.”