Why Sarah Jessica Parker is a Bitch

A Fuller Life - Dolores FullerRecently, I’ve made reference to the fact that Sarah Jessica Parker is not a nice person. I don’t actually know much about Parker. I base the statement on an interview with Dolores Fuller that was part of the extra features on a DVD of Plan 9 from Outer Space. Sarah Jessica Parker played the part of Dolores Fuller in Tim Burton’s bio-pic Ed Wood. Apparently, at a party for the cast after the film was released, Parker and the real Fuller finally met. Parker said to Fuller, “I’ve been telling everyone I’m playing the worst actress in history!”

The best I can say for Parker is that she was probably drunk. Fuller didn’t mention this, but it sounds like the kind of thing someone would say when they’re drunk. Regardless, it is unacceptable. Think about this: Parker was 29 at that time and Fuller was 71. What ever happened to showing a little respect to your elders? Or what about showing a little sympathy for the poor and weak? Currently, Parker’s net worth is estimated at $90 million. I’m sure she didn’t have that much money back then, but she was certainly very wealthy. What’s more, she was at the height of her fame. Fuller was doing okay, but she wasn’t rich and she certainly was on the far side of her career.

Parker’s statement isn’t even true. I’ve never liked it when people say that Ed Wood was the worst director of all time. For one thing: it just isn’t true. But it is a hell of a lot more true than to say that Fuller was the worst actress ever. In fact, looking back at the films, it is clear that she isn’t a bad actress at all. What she lacks is great beauty, and that is doubtlessly why Sarah Jessica Parker was hired to play her.

What’s more, Parker, like most Hollywood stars, knows nothing about how independent films were and largely still are put together. It is hard to be great when you are limited to one or two takes. And that is just the start of everything that these actors labored under: poor scripts, bad sets, incompetent co-stars, and much, much more. Parker couldn’t know what it is like to work in these little films, but should have know enough to shut up about it.

What annoys me most of all is that Dolores Fuller wasn’t primarily an actor; she was a highly successful songwriter. She wrote songs for Elvis Presley, Nat King Cole, Peggy Lee, and others. So to have this young know-nothing making a comment about one small part of the life of an older woman who was successful later is just disgusting. And learning that Sarah Jessica Parker acted this way has poisoned me toward all of her work since then.

Afterword

Dolores Fuller died back in 2011 at the age of 88. Here is Elvis performing her song “Do the Clam” from Girl Happy. Enjoy!

7 thoughts on “Why Sarah Jessica Parker is a Bitch

  1. What I think you nailed here is that SJP was appealing as a young actress precisely because she wasn’t perfect-looking; she was energetic without being generic and her appearance stuck out.

    I regard "Sex And The City," along with most of "Seinfeld," as gruesome arbiters of our time. They were both influential TV shows celebrating utter self-obsession. Now selfishness is part of our nature which can’t be denied, and at times a pop-culture phenomenon which exposes how we aren’t as noble as we claim can be very funny and useful. (Bob Newhart almost patented this in a very gentle way.)

    "SITC" and "Seinfeld" weren’t really funny, though. (OK, some of the performers were, and the first season of "Seinfeld is different than the latter ones.) They just tapped into what people wanted to think of themselves in that place and time — how being concerned with the feelings of others less cool and detached than yourself was a waste of energy, and everyone hip would mock those who tried.

    Was that aesthetic preferable to the phony sentimental schmaltz of, say, "Highway To Heaven?" Well, it resonated better with younger viewers. But I’d suggest it substituted one sort of navel-gazing self-congratulation for another. As opposed to the genuine subversion of MST3K or "Arrested Development" (both, oddly, were basically kind-hearted programs, despite their sarcastic humor.)

    Eh, I just have issues with "Seinfeld" and "Sex In The City." (For one thing, when I lived in New York, I found locals far less mean-spirited than the characters in those shows.) So I get nasty about them whenever I can . . .

  2. @JMF – I agree pretty much. Don’t forget [i]Touched by an Angel[/i]. I’m not sure I agree with you about [i]Arrested Development[/i]. I love that show, but I’m not sure I can go along with "kind-hearted." George Michael was kind-hearted. I’ll give you that. But he was the [i]only[/i] character who wasn’t totally self-absorbed.

  3. I think of "Arrested" as kind-hearted because it didn’t make fun of real people. It set up wittily-written/portrayed cartoon characters, and then ravaged them. When Buster lost his hand to a "loose seal," you didn’t laugh because Buster represented anyone or any type you knew that you wanted to see mocked; he was an absurdist creation, who could fuck his mom’s automated vacuum cleaner and scream, "but I’m half machine!"

    I think of it as kind-hearted because the appeal was really our trust of the writers and actors, that they would delight us without ever sliding into easy-target topical humor. (Yes, they ridiculed the Iraq war and goofy privileged people, but to me, that’s not cheap topical stuff; that’s what every sane person is thinking.) And, at the base of it, by skewing everyone’s lunacy AD never congratulated its viewers for being chic enough to laugh at chosen targets. "Seinfeld" and "Sex In The City" were about being as cool and dismissive as the characters on-screen, mocking what they mocked. "AD" just had a go at everything it could. It punctured every cliche without a whiff of "Sopranos"-style cynicism. That’s kind-hearted in my book!

  4. Pingback: Morning Music: Do the Clam | Frankly Curious

  5. There’s obvious truth to this story. Look at what’s happening in social media regarding Kim Cantrell being stalked by SJP. She’s bulling actress Kim Cantrall even after a family tragedy. Now SJP is having her publicist have her friends make public statements regarding how much of a wonderful person she is.

    • This article, which I wrote 5 years ago, suddenly exploded. So I figured something happened. I checked out Google News and heard about the whole thing with Kim Cattrall. The problem as I see it is that people in Hollywood are extremely fake. I know a lot of people, but I would say I have only a handful of friends. But if you are a Hollywood actor, you have hundreds of friends. This is brilliantly lampooned in All That Jazz.

      When I heard Dolores Fuller tell that story, she was on the verge of tears. I knew she was telling the truth. And it’s people like Fuller who I most admire. So I’m really glad that Cattrall said that they weren’t friends. Because I’m sure they aren’t.

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