While most people are still reeling from the recent news that Robert Pattinson and Leonardo DiCaprio had to cancel their wedding plans due to the coronavirus pandemic, the past week has seen a surge in celebrity weddings. The actor has rekindled his relationship with the ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ and the pair have tied the knot in an intimate ceremony in Siena, Tuscany.
The newlyweds have kept fans updated on their honeymoon plans via Instagram, regularly posting images of themselves on their ‘foreign’ wedding trips. The last photo in their series of newlywed snaps was taken in Florence, Italy, shortly after the ceremony, with Leonardo wearing a vintage Rolex on his left wrist and a golden band on his right.
But while many of the photographs are undoubtedly genuine, some have raised eyebrows. The most notable of these is probably the couple’s engagement shot, which was taken in Florence back in March 2019. The image has an uncanny resemblance to a staged photograph that emerged from a now-deleted Instagram account in early 2020.
This is hardly the first time that Instagram has been used to stage photographs. Back in 2017, the account @nataliapublicist posed for a series of wedding photographs for its client @kimberleyclique, which were then published by Life & Style magazine. It is, however, the first time that anyone has questioned the identity of a celebrity Instagrammer.
Who is Robert Pattinson and how does he keep getting himself into these trouble-plagued situations? We take a look.
Born to British Parents
The world famous British actor, whose real name is Robert Pattinson, was born in London, England on April 26,1986 to Elizabeth Taylor and the late Charles Hawkins. His mother is an English ex-showgirl while his father died when he was just 12 years old. In his early days, he attended several private schools in London before moving to Los Angeles in 2007. He began acting locally and was even selected to play the lead in the 2012 London Olympics opening ceremony. In 2015, he received the Academy Award for Best Actor for his role in the film “The Birth of a Nation”. A year later, he was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor for his role in Woody Allen’s “Wildfire” and received the British BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer – Male.
Before he was famous, Pattinson had already established himself as a promising young actor. Some of his early films include the British comedy-drama “Four Four Two” and Disney’s animated feature “How to Train Your Dragon”. He also had supporting roles in the films “Tamara Drewe” and “The Eagle”. The actor has cited several influences including Marlon Brando, Al Pacino and James Dean. In an interview with Esquire in 2016, he discussed his early influences explaining: “I don’t know if they had a large impact on me at the time, but I definitely listened to what they had to say.”
The Rise of Instagram
Instagram was originally called ‘Finstagram’ and was founded by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger in 2010. The app allows users to share images and videos with friends and followers. It is now one of the most popular social media platforms with over a billion active monthly users. Celebrities are slowly embracing the platform and using it to share their latest news, outfits and more.
In 2015, DiCaprio shared a link to a “Penguin” themed Twitter account, which was created by @nataliapublicist, in order to encourage his followers to try out Instagram. Since then, a host of A-listers have fallen in love with the app, with many sharing their accounts and personal photos. The platform has provided a space for celebrities to be themselves, unfiltered by the press, which has led some to dub it the “digital Marilyn Monroe”.
Cancel the Wedding, Travel the World!
The news that the couple were forced to cancel their wedding was a major blow to their fans. In the weeks leading up to their wedding day, they had posted a number of images on their Instagram as well as video blogs, showing off their luxurious lifestyle and hinting at the romance in the offing. After news of the cancellation broke, they continued to post on their official account as if nothing had happened.
In an interview with Esquire in March 2020, Pattinson responded to the reports of the wedding cancellation explaining: “I don’t believe in regrets, but sometimes you meet someone and it just clicks. It wasn’t meant to be. I wish him the best.”
The ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ actor has rekindled his romance with the ‘Saw actor’s’ daughter Isabella, 25, and it seems that their romance may even be more serious this time around. The lovebirds have been photographed together on multiple occasions and the paparazzi have even managed to catch them kissing. In July 2019, the pair were spotted holding hands while getting coffee in London. They were also seen holding hands as they arrived at the Paris premiere of “The Loves of Saul x Juliet Saul” in late September 2019, with some fans speculating that they had finally gotten together. The following month, while in Budapest, they were photographed together as they celebrated Isabella’s birthday. Isabella even surprised the paparazzi by flashing her wedding ring during one of the celebrations. This led some fans to nickname Isabella “Stella”.
How Does He Keep Getting Himself in These Situations?
It would be a mistake to solely blame the coronavirus pandemic for the surge in celebrity weddings. The outbreak has undoubtedly made it more difficult for some couples to wed due to health concerns, but credit must also be given to other factors. The fact that so many celebrities have a large social media presence makes it much easier for people to find out about their personal life. This in turn makes it much easier for the paparazzi to steal their intimate photos and videos and post them online. Social media has also provided a platform for would-be stalkers to follow celebrities and spy on their every move. It doesn’t take a huge amount of effort to find out as much information as possible about a celebrity. This makes it much easier for someone to impersonate them online.
The Impersonation Scandal
Back in November 2019, several high profile celebrities were embroiled in a huge scandal after their private images were leaked online. The photos were stolen by a group of hackers who broke into the photographers’ computers and stole over 13.4 million images and videos. Some of the victims included Kylie Jenner, Kate Moss, Rihanna, Gigi Hadid and more.
It was later revealed that the individuals behind the leak were men working for a huge Chinese corporation. The company, Meitu, has denied any involvement in the leak, but the damage had already been done. The fact that so many of the stolen images were of intimate nature made the incident particularly scandalous. It also led to concerns about the safety of the famous individuals. Several of the celebrities mentioned above have since hired bodyguards as a precaution.
A Test Case
It seems that the scandal at Meitu wasn’t a one-off incident. In February 2020, it was reported that over 100 high profile celebrities had their images stolen and circulated on social media. An investigation into the matter has yet to surface, but it wouldn’t be surprising if the perpetrator turned out to be the same group of hackers. As with the earlier scandal, the fact that so many of the photos were of an intimate nature made this episode all the more controversial.
Instagram has been around for long enough for most people to know what it is and how it works. This has made it easier for potential fake accounts to pretend to be famous people. It is, however, still difficult to verify the identities of someone you haven’t met in person. The best way to avoid being fooled is simply to not fall for the tricks of social media. If you see something that seems off, it probably is. The same holds true for famous people’s social media accounts. Suspicious characters or bizarre behavior should not be ignored.