dv.jpg The Beckhams have been living an act on and off the screen. They have a fairy tale castle and a perfect family. Their children are part of the publicity stunt and look their parts. But scratch underneath the surface and the illusion of happiness shatters. David Beckham knows his sex appeal and macho image are highly popular with women. Posh Victoria is no gentle mother and laid-back wife. She has a wild past which does not seem subdued, and her bitchiness is legendary. But they are smart business people and image manipulators who know how to stay in the limelight in a highly fickle industry. And they are not doubtful about using their marriage or family as kindling to stoke the fire of their popularity.

Hollywood and Bollywood seem to be invading the family institution for their latest publicity stunts and financial gain. Liz Hurley and Arun Nayar tie the knot in a lavish and grand celebration which somehow does not match the depth of their relationship and love. The public fall out with Nayar’s parents proved the irony of their wedding ‘show’ for a Hindu wedding is supposedly about strengthening family ties and traditions. Larry Birkhead’s jubilant victory in proving the paternity of his daughter seems little to do with paternal love than the glitter of the billions likely to be inherited by her daughter when she is of age.

Hollywood weddings and family ties are as brittle and thin as ever. Love is in the air but for all the wrong reasons. Let’s hope the marriages of Brad Pitt – Angelina Jolie, Tom Cruise – Katie Holmes, and Aishwarya Rai – Abishek Bachan will survive the test of time as well as the ravages of the entertainment industry. Then there is still hope that if not all marriages are made in heaven, at least they are not made purely in search of fame or money signs either.