Baby wars: The celebrity dilemma

You're rich, famous and you have a newborn. How best to cash in on that vital first photograph of your offspring?

Angelina Jolie finally emerged from hospital in Nice yesterday, following the birth of twins Vivienne Marcheline and Knox Leon last week, but the waiting paparazzi were none the richer for it.

Jolie and her partner Brad Pitt reportedly struck a record £6m deal with a US magazine for the first photos of the babies; money that they have vowed to donate to charity.

In doing so, Brangelina have probably avoided most of the PR pitfalls that befall the majority of celebrity new parents – namely, appearing grasping by pocketing a fat fee, or annoying an eager public by refusing to let the world see the much-hyped infant for months.

"It's like a game of chess," explained the PR guru Max Clifford. "You've got to make sure that you don't offend people, because you could alienate fans," he said.

Similar acts of munificence can be seen lower down the celebrity food chain. Charlotte Church and Gavin Henson recently donated the fee for pictures of baby Ruby's christening to charity. Eyebrows had been raised when they kept the cash from the photoshoot following her birth.

But Darryn Lyons, founder of the Big Pictures photo agency, said: "I don't think it makes any difference if these celebrities give the money to charity. These celebrities are willing to sell their soul, grandma and babies down the river."

But not all the stars are willing to part with their fees. Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony pocketed a rumoured £2.5m from People magazine for shots of their twins, Emme and Max, in March; Matthew McConaughey and his girlfriend, Camilla Alves, netted in the region of £1.5m for photos of baby Levi.

Suddenly, Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes' decision to unveil baby Suri for free on the cover of Vanity Fair in 2006 is looking pretty PR savvy. Not only did the photos quash endless rumours about Cruise's sexuality and fertility, they also set him apart from those celebrities who are keen to cash in on their kids.

Cruise's ex-wife Nicole Kidman said that she "never considered" taking any of the magazines up on offers for photos of her new baby, Sunday Rose. Considering the way her last few films have fared, she'd better hope this unsporting behaviour doesn't alienate too many fans.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooksA celebration of British elections
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Ashdown Group: Database Executive - Leading Events Marketing Company - London

£23000 - £25000 per annum + 25 days holidays & pension: Ashdown Group: Databas...

Recruitment Genius: Publishing Assistant

£14000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has arisen for a...

Guru Careers: Graduate Account Executive / Digital Account Executive

£20k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Graduate Digital Account Exec ...

Guru Careers: Print Project Manager

Competitive (DOE): Guru Careers: A Print Project Manager is needed to join one...

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk