Jeremy Allen White calls dealing with paparazzi not nice and really weird

During the dog days of summer and into September it seemed like we had a fresh batch of paparazzi photos of Jeremy Allen White almost daily. I started to suspect–and many CB commenters did, too–that at least some of them were orchestrated by Jeremy. Why? Because it seemed like a strategy for an in-demand, up and coming actor to keep his name fresh on people’s minds during the actors’ strike. In normal years, he would have been campaigning for the Emmy (he was nominated for The Bear). Now I think I might have been a little too cynical.

He covers GQ for their Men of the Year issue to promote his upcoming film Iron Claw, which has a SAG-AFTRA waiver. They barely gloss over his divorce, but Jeremy did talk at length about the paps staking out his house and following him while he goes for runs and scary things like that. During the summer, there were pictures of him and his estranged wife Addison at their daughter’s soccer game and I wondered how the paps knew to go to a random Little League field in the Valley to find him. The GQ article says that it’s a soccer league with other famous peoples’ kids (how gross for the paps to stake out a soccer league for kindergartners). His sobriety is only touched on when the interviewer notes that they’re drinking Arnold Palmers at lunch.

The paps follow him on his runs: In July, he was [running by his house] when a car pulled up alongside him and started taking pictures, from the top of the hill all the way back to his house.

“I was like, ‘What are we doing? Are you escorting me?’” White recalls asking the photographer, attempting to reason with him.

“ ‘I’m just trying to get a good shot,’” the paparazzo demurred, according to White. “It’s such a weird aspect of this thing that I truly never thought I would ever deal with whatsoever,” he tells me, once we’re at the restaurant. “It’s not fun, and it’s not nice, and it’s really weird.”

The soccer game incident: “They know where I live,” White says. “There was a period where they were just chilling and when I would pull out [of the driveway], they would follow, and when I got home they were there.” Most of the time, the paparazzi only stalked him completing innocuous errands, but it sometimes verged into uncomfortably personal territory, such as when they staked out his daughter’s football game, which he attended with [estranged wife Addison] Timlin.

Again, White says, he tried to reason with them: “ ‘Please don’t take pictures of our children. That’s not OK.’” One photographer replied that if he left, there were plenty of others camped out to get the shots. The paparazzi were particularly big fans of this youth football league, which other celebrities’ children also play in.

Desperate to discourage the tabloids, White started wearing the same outfit to every game: “Ratty black shirt, Adidas slides, my [Mets] cap I wear every day,” he explains…The thinking behind the uniform was that the press would get tired of printing the same images, and wouldn’t be able to run them. “They did kind of stop,” White says.

[From GQ]

From the rest of the interview, he seems like he’s in a pretty good headspace. He’s redecorating his house, so I guess Addison is the one who moved out. There’s a truism that celebrities should just have to deal with getting papped and it’s the price of fame. But what Jeremy’s describing goes beyond what’s reasonable. It’s one thing to get photographed coming out of Craig’s or Giorgo Bialdi (I don’t know what the hip celeb place is in LA these days–is it Horses now?). But going to his kids’ soccer league and going to his house is too far. I can’t imagine how stressful that is to be a parent with strangers photographing your kids like that. And how hard it is not to be able to prevent it from happening, because these people will just cross every boundary. On another note, the photos in the GQ story are so weird–JAW is standing in the foreground looking at the camera, doing his best Rocky Balboa impression while in the background, a bunch of shirtless chiseled men are like, wrestling or playing football. He’s wearing a lot of cute little outfits, and this young man’s biceps are really letting you know, as they say. But the way it’s all staged is so awkward, like he’s ignoring all these people around him. Just let him wear revealing shorts, GQ! There doesn’t have to be some fancy conceit here.

— British GQ (@BritishGQ) November 7, 2023

— British GQ (@BritishGQ) November 7, 2023

Photos credit: Bruce/Javiles / BACKGRID and GQ via Instagram/Twitter

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