Hollywood’s Favourite Sport: Paps Punch-up
Picture of Luca Aquilanti
Someone could probably think that Hollywood is all surf and beach volleyball.
If you like basketball, you can watch the Los Angeles Lakers or since recent times, follow David Beckham playing for LA Galaxy.
Apart from those sports, the best sport activity seems to be Paparazzi Punch-ups.
Everyone can play this easy sport; all you need is a fabulous home in Beverly Hills with celebrity status or even a simple drive along Sunset Boulevard.
You will also need a couple of big, angry bodyguards.
You can now start to play the Paps Punch-up; go shopping and you will soon be surrounded by ten or more Paparazzi trying to get a picture of you driving or wearing the latest pair of designer sunglasses. As soon as you see the photographer taking a picture, you can order one of your gorillas to get into action and punches will fly on the boring streets of LA.
Sometimes you can see the Celebrities getting in action themselves because watching is not as fun as punching.
Last weekend, David Beckham was confronted a photographer, with a fight breaking out moments later between one of the soccer star’s bodyguards and the shutterbug.
According to an eyewitness, Beckham went up to the car and tried to get the driver to come out. When the driver declined, Beckham’s bodyguard went to the passenger side and a fight started.
David Beckham is not the only celebrity to express their disapproval of the paparazzi so robustly. Musicians and film stars have taken pleasure in punching, kicking and even spitting at photographers for many years. In reading this article, you will discover that the Paps Punch-up is an international sport played all over the world.
This is the top ten celebrity versus paparazzi scuffles:
10) Lilly Allen: She is famous for her tenacity in the battleground when the pop singer was arrested and cautioned last year after punching a photographer outside a nightclub in Soho, London on March 13.
9) Avril Lavigne: The singer has been known to hurl spit at photographers when she tires of their presence.
10) Jude Law was once quoted as saying that the best course of action when faced with invasive paparazzi was to “throw root vegetables at them.” But last September, a photographer claimed Law did more than throw vegetables at him after meeting him at a bus stop near his London home. Police arrested the actor, but he denied the paparazzo’s allegations and the charges were dropped.
7) Pierce Brosnan faces a round of legal meetings after an American paparazzo claimed the star attacked him in a Malibu car park in October last year. Los Angeles police declined to charge Brosnan but an unsatisfied Robert Rosen is now suing for assault, battery and negligence.
6) Hugh Grant As far as props go, he couldn’t have picked a more humorous one. When Hugh Grant tired of a tabloid photographer last spring, he resorted to using a tin of baked beans as a weapon. Or at least that’s what Ian Whittaker told police after he filed a complaint against the actor in April, 2007. The stunned paparazzi said he was left battered, bruised, and covered in baked beans. Grant was arrested but never charged.
5) Britney Spears 2007 was the year of umbrellas.
Shortly after shaving her head last year, walking tragedy Spears picked up a brolly and emptied a considerable amount of aggression onto a photographer’s car. The SUV survived the assault. Spears’s reputation did not.
Her explanation a few months later did little to redeem her. The pop singer blamed her behaviour as “method acting”. She was getting ready for an audition, she explained. Of course.
4 ) Alec Baldwin: When Alec Baldwin and his then wife Kim Basinger were met by a photographer as they brought their newborn baby daughter home from hospital, Baldwin got into a scuffle with the snapper. He was arrested and charged but acquitted of misdemeanor battery in March 1996.
3) Chris Martin: His music is so serene, but Chris Martin apparently was not during a trip to Australia in 2003. A photographer went to the police after the Coldplay frontman allegedly channeled his anger into a series of boyhood pranks. Paparazzo Jon Lister said he had been photographing Martin from his car, but took a brief break. When he returned he found Martin smashing his car’s windscreen and letting down the tyres. Martin was arrested and charged with willful damage but the case was later dropped.
2) Tommy Lee: Usually the picture of class, Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee lost his head after a night at the infamous Viper Room with his then wife Pamela Anderson in 1996. After a photographer tried to snap the pair leaving the LA club, Lee attacked paparazzo Henry Trappler. While Anderson was on his side that night, Lee eventually ended up facing both her and Trappler in court, after she also accused him of assault. He pleaded no contest in both cases.
And the winner is:
1) Sean Penn
Forget tubs of baked beans, spit balls and umbrella attacks; all pale in comparison when compared to what Sean Penn did to a paparazzo in 1986. The actor was shooting Shanghai Surprise in China when he discovered a paparazzo in his hotel room. He exacted revenge by hanging the photographer by his ankles from a ninth-floor balcony. Arrested and charged with attempted murder, Penn broke out of prison and escaped the country by jetfoil. He was later pardoned. Yes, really.