In the early 2000s, many teens and young adults believed that ‘The Simple Life’, a FOX reality series starring Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton, was the ultimate representation of the ‘haves and the have nots’.
The show was inspired by the tabloids that followed the two heiresses through their day to day life of superficially driven goals and aimless escapades, including the 2001 ‘leaked’ sex tape of Paris Hilton. ‘The Simple Life’ put the two socialites to work and not in the ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ sense of the word.
The series depicts the two wealthy socialites, Hilton and Riche, in the middle of a change of pace as they struggled to do manual, low-paying jobs such as cleaning rooms, farm work, serving meals in fast-food restaurants, and working as camp counselors. Beginning in 2003, it managed to successfully run for five years.
In the popular reality TV series, Nicole Richie assumed the persona of the smart best friend while her ‘House Of Wax’ counterpart fit perfectly into the role of the ‘dumb blonde’ stereotype.
However, in a recent interview with Naomi Campbell, Hilton claims to be nothing like her reality show depiction. Though some may argue that she was and blossomed into some late adulthood maturity, she ensures the public that producers made her play that role.
‘I think it definitely all came about with The Simple Life. Just creating this character, because it was one of the first reality shows and the producers told me ‘we want you play up this character of this kind of spoiled airhead,” Hilton told Campbell on the episode of her YouTube show ‘No Filter’.
‘It was my first show. I’d never been on TV before. I had no idea what to expect. So I had to continue doing that character for five seasons because I didn’t know the show would go on for so long. So I think that people assume that’s who I really am in life when I’m actually quite the opposite,’ Hilton claims.
Many fans will agree with Hilton’s assertion. Whether or not she was given a helping hand with the money and fame of her family name, she has ultimately made a name for herself as an entrepreneur. She has shown tremendous resiliency in overcoming the stigmas that she created of herself as a teen and young adult, which she also points out to Campbell.
‘I feel very proud. I’ve worked so hard. I think I really learned that from my family,’ she said. ‘Teaching me strong work ethic, which I think is so important, especially when you’re from a privileged family. It’s so easy to spoil your children and my parents never did that with my sister and I and my brothers.’
Paris Hilton, who is now 39, does not deny her party girl past. Throughout her interview with Naomi Campbell, they two are able to laugh about her socialite angst and the crazy stories she shares with her A-list friends.