The horrible burden of being Kristen Stewart

There she was the other morning on “The Today Show” looking like someone who had just been subpoenaed to appear in front of a Grand Jury — Kristen Stewart, star of the about-to-end “Twilight” series, and just about the unhappiest-looking celebrity on the contemporary scene.

Almost since the moment she became a star in the first “Twilight” movie, Stewart has spent most of her media appearance and interview time bemoaning her fate as one of the most watched young women in the world.

(By the way, I’ve named Stewart the vice-president of my Would It Kill You to Smile Club — with the presidency going to the peerless Victoria Beckham.)

In her “real” life, Stewart has brilliantly acted the role of a naive girl who somehow had celebrity thrust upon her — rather than admitting the Hollywood reality of achieving fame after years of working very hard for it and having a large staff of agents, managers and publicists with no other goal than landing their client important movie roles and then making sure everyone in the world knows about them.

Whiny stars are nothing new, but in the old days they had the decency to spend their post-stardom lives in semi-seclusion (Greta Garbo said “I vant to be alone” and then stayed out of our lives for the rest of her life.)

Nowadays, a huge maw of media and publicity outlets has to be fed 24/7 so it is virtually impossible to maintain a lofty position in Hollywood without doing a lot of press and public appearances (even the once press-shy Warren Beatty, Robert DeNiro and Meryl Streep have had to change their tunes in the current era).

Stars who won’t do lots of PR get bumped to the B casting list (with a few exceptions like Sean Penn and Daniel Day Lewis) and now it is also in the financial interest of a major star to do as much promotion as possible because they are getting a cut of the profits (poor Greta Garbo was an MGM wage slave during her whole film career).

I would love to be able to sit down with someone like Kristen Stewart and to try to explain that not being a famous movie star is one of the easiest of career and life accomplishments. All but about 20 people on this planet achieve that goal every day.

Joe Meyers