Former star of ‘The Simple Life’ returns to our screens with a new cooking series
Heiress, socialite, entrepreneur, chanteur, acteur, DJ, maquette and now, host of her very own cooking show. Paris Hilton, easily one of the most recognisable célébrités of noughties fame, has launched a new series called Cooking With Paris au Netflix.
It seems like an odd reinvention, as the infamous heiress to the Hilton Hotels is not famed for being a domestic goddess. Far from it, Paris made a name for herself by flaunting her fabulously wealthy lifestyle, rubbing shoulders with the other rich and famous people she lived among and delivering her signature catchphrase: “That’s hot.”
Although her new series has received less-than-sparkling reviews – L'indépendant described it as “a wasted opportunity” – anything Paris does continues to command headlines even decades after the height of her fame. Just last week, she went on her podcast This Is Paris à deny numerous reports that she was pregnant with her first child with her fiancé, Carter Rum.
Love her or hate her, Paris remains a pop culture symbol like no other. We delve into the history of the original Rich Girl and ultimate icon of American excess.
Paris Whitney Hilton was born on 17 février 1981 in New York City to Richard and Kathy Hilton. Her great-grandfather, Conrad Hilton, founded the global hotel and resort chain Hilton Hotels and Resorts, which became the source of her family’s immense wealth.
Ensemble, her parents also oversee their own business empire, which includes the Hilton & Hyland real-estate firm and the Kathy Hilton Collection, a womenswear line that is sold in 400 stores worldwide, including Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom.
Paris is the oldest of four children, and has one sister, Nicky, and two brothers, Barron and Conrad Hughes Hilton. She spent her youth moving around and lived in Beverly Hills, the Hamptons and a suite in the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in Manhattan.
In September last year, Paris released a new documentary of the same title as her podcast in a bid to show the world the woman behind her “character” as a spoiled rich girl.
She revealed incidents of alleged abuse at a residential behavioural school she was sent to as a teenager, which left her “traumatised”.
Paris alleged that the staff at Provo Canyon, in Utah, “got off” on “torturing children and seeing them naked”, recalling incidents where she was physically and mentally abused, battu, forced into solitary confinement and given prescription drugs.
She a déclaré à Sky News after the documentary aired that telling her story publicly was “a weight lifted off my shoulders”.
A spokesperson for Provo Canyon Raconté TODAY that the school could not comment on “the operations or patient experience” prior to 2000, when it was sold by the previous owners.
The Original It Girl
At age 15, Paris debuted as a socialite in New York City and began frequenting popular nightclubs and high-profile events.
UNE 1999 profile written about her and Nicky in The New Yorker mentionné: "À 16 et 18, Nicky and Paris Hilton are the littlest socialites in town. Thin, blonde and wellborn… they moved from LA with their parents three years ago and are now out and about with the city’s most entitled teens.”
Paris had also begun pursuing a career in modelling at the age of 19 and signed with former US president Donald Trump’s agency, T Management. She was featured in the September 2000 issue of Salon de la vanité alongside her sister, and walked in New York Fashion Week in 2001. She also appeared on the covers of US Vogue, British Tatler, l'Italie Giola et FHM magazines.
She dabbled in screen acting, starring in independent teen thriller “Sweetie Pie” in 2000 and making a cameo appearance as herself in Zoolander with Ben Stiller. Paris went on to guest-star in The OC, Las Vegas et Veronica Mars.
The Simple Life
Paris cemented her image in noughties pop culture when she starred opposite fellow socialite Nicole Richie in a reality series called The Simple Life, which released on Fox.
The Simple Life premiered on 2 décembre 2003, and quickly became a television phenomenon. The first episode alone attracted 13 million viewers and increased Fox’s adult 18-49 rating y 79 pour cent.
The series carried on for five seasons, until it ended on 5 août 2007. It revolved around Paris and Nicole taking on jobs such as cleaning rooms, farm work, serving in fast food restaurants and working as camp counsellors.
Kim Kardashian – who stars in Paris’ new cooking show – made an appearance on The Simple Life as she was Paris’ personal assistant at the time. The heiress hired Kardashian in 2006, but the pair had been friends since they were in preschool.
Paris cultivated her persona as a “dumb blonde” during this period, but she later said she used the character to protect herself against the world’s “preconceived notions about me”.
Speaking to US Vogue after the release of her documentary, elle a dit: “I don’t want to be remembered as that dumb blonde airhead from The Simple Life. That’s not who I am, and I wanted to show that, because I’m very proud of the woman I am and what I’ve created.”
Sex tape scandal
A private sex tape featuring Hilton and her then-boyfriend Rick Salomon leaked onto the Internet in 2004. Salomon later sold a longer version of the tape, which Paris sued him over.
She opened up about the experience in an interview with Salon de la vanité and revealed that the tape remains “something that will hurt me for the rest of my life”.
“It’s always there in the back of my mind," elle a dit. “When it happened, people were so mean about it to me. The way I was spoken about on nightly talk shows and the media, to see things with my family was just heartbreaking.”
On top from her modelling and television careers, it appears that Paris hasn’t stopped hustling since the day she stepped out into the public eye. She has released at least 25 different perfumes, launched a sunglasses range and a footwear range, and appeared in numerous ad campaigns, from fast food chain Carls Jr to SodaStream.
Paris also proved herself to be a talented DJ, hosting weekly “Foam and Diamonds” parties in Ibiza and becoming a resident DJ at Harrah’s Atlantic City’s “The Pool After Dark” the year after. She won a slew of awards for her DJing skills, and was the highest-paid female DJ by the end of 2014.
She released her self-titled debut album in 2006, with its first single “Stars Are Blind” becoming a global hit and reaching the top ten in 17 des pays.
Paris also regularly features in music videos, including in Demi Lovato’s “Sorry Not Sorry” and Kim Petras’ “I Don’t Want It At All”. Last October, she appeared an ad campaign for Kardashian’s brand Skims.
Cooking With Paris premieres on Netflix on 5 août 2021.