Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, Beyoncé and even Kim Kardashian were no-where to be seen in Forbes’ newly released list of the most influential celebrities of 2014.
Because the secret, it seems, to clawing your way to the top of the Hollywood pack is not hitting the headlines or indulging in sporadic periods of tongue-flashing – it’s being white, male and slightly grey around the hairline. Or Oprah Winfrey.
And top of the list was a man who fits the bill perfectly: Steven Spielberg.
"Spielberg’s amazing storytelling abilities have helped make him the most influential celebrity in America," Forbes explains of its decision. "In the latest edition of our annual Forbes/E-Score list, which is based on polling conducted by E-Poll Market Research, Spielberg scores a 47 for influence, which means that 47% of the U.S. population believes he is influential.
"A celebrity’s ‘Influential’ score represents how that person is perceived as influencing the public, their peers, or both," says Gerry Philpott, president of E-Poll Market Research. "If anyone doubts that Steven Spielberg has greatly influenced the public, think about how many will think for a second before going into the water this summer."
Second on the list was last year’s most influential person, Oprah Winfrey, who, Forbes says, has "slipped in the public’s eye" because she’s less in the faces of Americans via her TV chat show, and working more closely on projects behind the scenes, like her cable network OWN.
Third is fellow silver-haired director, Star Wars creator George Lucas.
"The director is mostly retired now; since selling LucasFilm to Disney he has settled down with his new wife, Mellody Hobson, and their baby daughter,” Forbes continues. “But with Star Wars about to get a new life, all the media and fanboy attention going to the world he created is keeping Lucas in the spotlight."
In at number four was director Ron Howard with an ‘influential rating’ of 41. "Unfortunately for Howard that influence didn’t translate into people going to the theater to see his latest movie, Rush," Forbes added in a backhanded fashion.
He was followed by Martin Scorsese at number five. "The 71-year-old auteur is getting tons of Oscar attention this year for The Wolf of Wall Street," they conclude.
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