Life is hard normally, but in this recession, or double-dip recession, or is it a depression, it is really hard. Hollywood celebrities are not immune. News that BURT REYNOLDS is in foreclosure on his mansion in Hobe Sound, Florida is overshadowed by the suicide death of a husband on Bravo's reality show, THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF BEVERLY HILLS.
In a real estate market that has shaken out homeowners in all neighborhoods, REYNOLDS has been unable to pay his mortgage for the past year. He owes more than a million on the outstanding mortgage. At 75, his prospects for earned income certainly can't be good. He has had an illustrious career, first, as a nude model for Cosmopolitan Magazine back in the '70's. He starred in feature films like DELIVERANCE, THE BEST LITTLE WHOREHOUSE IN TEXAS, and SMOKEY AND THE BANDIT. His career had a minor resurgence with a Golden Globe for BOOGIE NIGHTS in 1997. But now, it seems time has caught up.
As it has for RUSSELL ARMSTRONG, husband of TAYLOR on THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF BEVERLY HILLS. The two had been suffering marital problems (who wouldn't with the pressures of that stupid show), with TAYLOR apparently making moves to file for divorce. RUSSELL had moved out of the Beverly Hills "mansion" in July and was living with a friend. The pressure of life in the spotlight, of living up to the "dream" of being Beverly Hills royalty, and of a marriage failing on a primetime reality series all conspired to bring him to the brink. He was found dead yesterday after what appeared to be a self hanging.
The ARMSTRONGS weren't the richest couple on the show. But they did throw a lavish birthday party for their daughter in the range of $60,000. Turns out their finances were not what the show portrayed, and further, the show was looking to make them a major drama plot this season. THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF BEVERLY HILLS Season 2 was set to premiere September 5th. In the first episode, already aired for the press, TAYLOR is seen shopping for lingerie to spice up their marriage. Shame on BRAVO.
The reality of life is hard enough these days. Do the studios really need to be filling up the airwaves with more of the same magnified by 10. What ever happened to a good love story, albeit complete fantasy? Maybe a seahorse and a mermaid; they fall in love, escape a 8-armed giant red octupus, have 500 fillies and live happily ever after. Or maybe a murder, something we could enjoy to escape the problems of this world. I don't care if the sleuth solving it is some old biddy who can barely dress herself. Or a sloppy relationship-challenged, mumbling shorty. Anything to get my mind off reality.
I think I'll rent SHAMUS. In it BURT REYNOLDS plays a New York private eye, you know the one-likes booze, girls and gambling, and is not so good on the surveillance thing. Those were the days.