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Richard Dyer is an English academic born in 1945 who holds a
professorship in the department of film studies at kings college
London. He specializes in cinema mainly Italian cinema, queer
theory, and the relationship between entertainment and
representations of race, sexuality, and gender, he was formerly
a faculty member of the Film Studies Department at the
University of Warwick for many years and has held a number of
visiting professorships in the United Kingdom, the United
States, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, and Germany.
Richard Dyer’s star theory is the idea that icons and celebrities
are made by organizations for financial gain. He believes that
stars are made to symbolize 'real people' experiencing real
emotions. Stars are produced by the music industry to serve a
purpose - to make money from the audience, who answer to
various features of a star’s personality by buying records and
The star theory can be separated into three sections:
1. The star as construction
2. The star as commodity
3. The star as ideology
Richard dyer says that the star is simply a construction and not
a real person. The star is produced through music videos,
For instance Miley Cyrus has recently hit the headlines with her
twerking and her explicit music video of her riding on a
wrecking ball naked. However, should would not do this in the
privacy of her own home, therefore Miley Cyrus the person and
the Miley Cyrus the star are not the same.
THE STAR AS CONSTRUCTION
Another part of the star theory is that stars are created in order
to benefit from financial gain from related merchandise such
as, t-shirts and posters.
Record labels produce similar stars because they know that
particular patterns and trends will work to make them money.
It is for this exact reason that there are so many musicians that
are similar. For example, rappers such as Future and Young
THE STAR AS A COMMODITY
Stars represent particular social groups and point of views and
thus create certain ideologies. In turn, fans of the star tend to
copy their styles and shares the same views as them. Take for
example the fans of Skrapz (a UK urban artist). They will share
the same idea as Skrapz about the streets of London, and how
tough they are.
THE STAR AS A IDEOLOGY