With all the comparisons to JFK that Barack Obama has had lately, it’s about time he gets his own Marilyn Monroe. Actress Scarlett Johansson has made her support of Obama no big secret. In the past she’s quipped that she’s “engaged” to the presumptive Democratic nominee (actually, she’s betrothed to actor Ryan Reynolds) and appeared in his star-studded “Yes We Can” YouTube video. Now the Lost in Translation star tells Politico.com that she and Obama are pen pals.
The Daily News is all over the story, declaring on page 3, “OMG! BAM & SCAR JO R CYBER PALS!” with a glam shot of Johansson in a low-cut dress juxtaposed with a photo of Obama boarding a plane. (Johansson says it’s “amazing” that Obama has written her such “thoughtful” messages while on the campaign trail.)
The inevitable backlash is looming. I can already picture the columns in right-wing media: “Obama has time to cyberchat with movie stars, but what does he do for Joe Sixpack?” Considering that the current critiques of the candidate are about his amnesia on when he had his last cigarette and his audacity to hire “D.C. denizens” to assist in his VP search (see Michelle Malkin on page 6 of today’s Post), kvetching about shooting off a few e-mails to a movie star could be a quick, glamorous way to impugn Obama. Add a few innuendos and voila!—instant “scandal.”
Even Johansson herself understands that her constant campaigning for the Illinois senator could spur a backlash. She tells Politico.com, “Even I’m wary of celebrity endorsements…I don’t want to seem like I’m holier than thou. We all have the same right to vote and, especially in this technical age where we all can broadcast our opinions, we all have the opportunity to entice others to vote…if the spotlight is on me, I might as well try to direct it on things and causes that I believe in.” Maybe it’s time to dial it down a bit, ScarJo.