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“Hepburn, Colbert, Garbo, Monroe — they were movie stars. The current crop of film actors are merely … American idols, and their appeal is only to their immediate peers. …

“The tabloids inflate their subjects to the point where Paris Hilton apparently believed it when she said, pre-orange-jumpsuit, ‘Every decade has an iconic blonde, like Marilyn Monroe or Princess Diana, and right now, I’m that icon.’ …

“Hollywood used to be larger than life; its denizens were fantastic creatures, possessing beauty and sophistication that the rest of us could only gaze upon wistfully.

“Now Hollywood seems to exist to make us mere mortals feel better about our ordinary lives.”

Jennifer Nicholson Graham, writing on “Princess Envy,” Wednesday at NationalReview.com