There are a lot of wonderful things about being a celebrity: money, fame, Illuminati orgies, etc. But certain members of the public don't exactly respect boundaries, and the resulting stories range from the mildly alarming to "actual horror movie come to life." Look at how ...
The internet's obsession with Keanu Reeves has become a meme at this point, turning someone who is reportedly one of Hollywood's nicest guys into a mythological figure. If you think that sounds like it'd be a lot of fun on Keanu's end, keep in mind how many people will insist on taking that way, way too far. While the Matrix trilogy (soon to be a "quadrilogy," or whatever they call a series of four when they have to label the Blu-ray set) has left him with a flock of unstable fans who are convinced it was a documentary, it's his experience during the filming of 2015's Knock Knock that makes it clear why people like him have bodyguards.
The film, in case you've already forgotten, is about about a family man who's preyed upon by two femme fatales who show up at his house. Well, in September 2014, Reeves in fact did wake up to the sounds of somebody breaking into his home. He came upon a woman sitting in a chair in his library. She wasn't there for a book, though, as she told him when he asked her. She was there for him, she said, at which point he went to dial 911. When you're Keanu, this is simply a thing that happens.
In fact, just two days later, a second, unrelated woman broke into his house while he was out. She stripped down, used his shower, and skinny-dipped in his pool, which is honestly the least crazy part because he probably has a bangin' pool. Reeves' cleaning crew spotted her and dialed him up, so he called the police to come and fish her out. (A call that presumably went something like "Yeah, it's Keanu. Yep, the usual. Thanks.") And if you've seen Knock Knock, you know Reeves is lucky it all stopped there.
Nicolas Cage, an Academy Award winner (no, really) who went broke buying T-Rex skulls and haunted houses, is another actor who has become a living meme. Which again means that certain fringe members of society feel free to let themselves into his home. This particular incident occurred right after Cage finished Joel Schumacher's Trespass (man, whoever writes reality is getting super lazy).
Cage was sleeping next to his wife when he suddenly woke up to find a naked man standing at the foot of his bed, wearing Cage's jacket and slurping a Fudgsicle. There scientifically may not be a more terrifying thing to suddenly wake up to. Yet Cage talked the man down and got him out of the house with a level of composure that I can't imagine. I mean, have you seen Nicolas Cage? And he didn't even press charges because the man was obviously unwell. He did get rid of the house, though, because it was a scary ordeal, and probably also because it's super hard to get Fudgsicle out of a carpet.
But his relatively pleasant demeanor while dealing with the dude likely came from the fact that this was hardly the first time someone attempted to rattle the Cage. During the filming of 1999's Bringing Out The Dead, Cage claims an actual mime pulled his way onto the sound stage via invisible rope and began tormenting the actor. He was doing weird things with presumably imaginary props during takes, until set security got rid of him. Was the guy crazy? An aspiring Batman villain? Or just a dude playing a joke in the hope it would brighten Cage's day? The scariest part is that when you're Nicolas Cage, you never know for sure.
Stephen King has made a career out of putting his own nightmares on paper for us to enjoy, while also surviving drug addiction and a horrific car accident. So when something jolts the master of horror, it must be pretty bad. In King's case, it was Erik Keene.
Keene smashed a window and clambered inside the King house with a fake bomb in his pocket. However, this was less "home invasion" and more "elevator pitch," as Keene had the same shitty proposal every overly entitled fanboy does: He'd written a sequel to Misery, and wanted King's help getting the book published. And as any fan of King knows, Misery is about an obsessed fan who kidnaps an author and forces him to write for her. Again, reality's writer is going through a rough spot.
What made Keene's demand a little more attention-worthy, though, was his accusation that King had stolen the story of Misery's Annie Wilkes from his own life. Wilkes, the baby-murdering former nurse, turned out to have a lot in common with Keene's aunt, Genene Jones, a baby-murdering former nurse from Texas. Obviously, those are unfortunate circumstances, and I can't imagine reading a goddamn Stephen King novel and thinking it was a surprise biography.
The police collected Keene, who ended up being a low-rent Texas hood who'd violated parole (for stealing $20,000 worth of goods). He tried suing Texas for $7.2 million for not trying harder to stop him from violating his parole in the first place. It didn't work and Keene got sentenced to two years in prison. Despite it's horror-novel-ready nature, King never wrote about the experience. Even though the dude writes like a dozen books a year, he's not had to resort to cranking out Misery 2.
Say what you will about Steven Spielberg -- a man who has influenced what we think of as "modern" cinema more than anyone else alive -- but you can't really imagine anyone stalking him. Despite his charisma when talking about the making of Jaws, he's never been that kind of celebrity. Nevertheless, in 1998, Spielberg found himself the target of one very obsessive fan's desires. Jonathan Norman, a former bodybuilder, had terrifying plans for the director.
While Spielberg was filming Saving Private Ryan, Norman was arrested and found with three pairs of handcuffs, a roll of duct tape, and a box cutter. He'd even leased a car like the one Spielberg's wife drove in order to sneak past the gate guards easier. In police custody, Norman was unusually blunt: He told them he'd wanted to rape the director. It was during the investigation that the full scope of Norman's nightmare plan came to light. He'd staked out Spielberg's home, writing down the names of Spielberg, Capshaw, and their four children in his day planner. And when Norman wasn't fantasizing about the filmmaker, he was filling out a shopping list for eye masks, chloroform, and dog collars.
The whole time he was planning to kidnap Spielberg, Norman was already on parole for driving into a crowd in 1995 during the course of an argument. The incident had gotten him two strikes (for assault) under California's Three Strikes law, and the kidnapping plot was strike #3. Norman ended up with a 25-years-to-life sentence, and Spielberg got to watch Saving Private Ryan clean up at the Oscars instead of appearing in the In Memoriam segment.
Some of the scariest stalkers are the most persistent, the ones who have made it their full-time job. Like David Letterman's stalker, Mary Margaret Ray. Sometime in her 30s, the schizophrenic Ray decided that she and Letterman were in love. She'd gain access to his property over and over, once convincing some painters that she was the housekeeper and needed a ride into town to buy food. Her most unsettling visit was the night Letterman, who'd been sleeping alongside a lady friend, woke up to catch Ray, in startled Bigfoot pose, watching the couple. As soon as she realized Letterman was awake, she fled.
This all built up to her stealing Letterman's Porsche in 1988. With a son in tow, she was caught outside the Lincoln Tunnel. She'd tell a toll collector that she was Letterman's wife, while the boy was his son. The rest became tabloid fodder, and she'd eventually lose interest in Letterman and obsess over retired astronaut Story Musgrave instead. Passing your stalker off to another famous person isn't the best possible outcome, but it's definitely not the worst, all things considered.
Theresa Saldana was an actress who made a name for herself in such movies as Defiance and Raging Bull. Her star was on the rise, and that's when she encountered (and was stabbed repeatedly by) her stalker, Arthur Richard Jackson.
After seeing her in Defiance, Jackson, a Scottish national who'd yo-yo'd from the U.S. to the UK and back again on visa violations, decided he had to have her. And so he hired a private detective to chase down her information. He eventually got her mother's number, called her up to say he was a casting agent for Scorsese and needed her current address, and then waited outside her home with a hunting knife. If that sounds familiar, it's because psycho-in-arms Robert John Bardo, the killer of Rebecca Schaeffer, would later do something extremely similar.
Saldana was saved by a passing deliveryman named Jeff Fenn, who managed to pull Jackson off of her in the middle of a stabbing so violent that the knife bent, and then held the guy until police came and collected him. After being arrested, Jackson didn't remain incommunicado, still sending letters to her. The scariest was probably the one he sent expressing regret ... but not regret over stabbing her. No, he regretted that he hadn't used a gun, which would have ensured they'd be united in Heaven.
Saldana went onto play herself in a movie about the crime, Victims For Victims: The Theresa Saldana Story (with one of her actual ER doctors playing themselves too). Victims for Victims was also the name of a victims advocacy group she formed. After scooching out of jail after a surprisingly short sentence (at the time, the California maximum for this crime was 12 years; it's now life), Jackson was extradited to the UK, where he ended up in a psychiatric hospital for the rest of his life due to other, previous crimes. Meanwhile, Saldana starred in The Commish, a successful TV series, getting a Golden Globe nomination for. With this kind of story, that's about the happiest ending you're going to get.
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How did these hyper-specific tropes spread so quickly?
Most rich kids just want to be pop stars.
The Hollywood rumor mill has been playing games with celebrity deaths for at least a century.