“I literally wanted to die at some points,” Hilton says while discussing non-consensual release of sex tape in 2004.
Paris Hilton is taking social media to the next level: virtual reality.
The former reality star, DJ and entrepreneur told The Hollywood Reporter she’s actually "a huge tech geek" who is "obsessed with video games, VR," and she’s got a very big project up her sleeve.
"I’m working with a company right now and we’re about to launch a Paris Hilton virtual reality world, which is basically going to be the next social media universe where people from all around the world can come meet, can come hang out," she said. "You can be yourself or an avatar, whatever you want to be. I’m taking it to the next level. I’ve always been ahead of my time and now that I think about it, I’ve always loved being a pioneer."
And pioneer she is, according to "The American Meme," a new documentary premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival on Friday. The film explores how her career as a pop culture icon, mostly just for being Paris Hilton after the success of Fox reality show "The Simple Life," has influenced today’s current crop of "influencers" on social media and launched a billion-dollar business empire.
"That was my plan the entire time, from ‘The Simple Life.’ I knew I wanted to have a huge empire," she told THR. She also reiterated her dumb blonde persona was just a character.
"I was never really showing the real me when I was on reality TV," she said. "I was playing a character, so I think anyone who doesn’t know me would assume, ‘Oh my God, that’s how she is.’ I really wanted to be completely honest in this film and tell the truth and clarify a lot of things that have been said about me and a lot of things that have happened in my life."
Since we know you still love her, here are five more things we learned about the socialite who paved the way for online personalities you’re all following today.
She Felt Like She Was ‘Raped’ After the Release of Her 2004 Sex Tape With Ex-Boyfriend Rick Saloman
"It was like being raped. It felt like I’ve lost part of my soul and been talked about in such cruel and mean ways. I literally wanted to die at some points. I was like, ‘I just don’t want to live,’" she says in the documentary about her. "Because I thought everything was taken away from me. I didn’t want to be known as that … I would never be who I could have been."
She Feels Like the OG Social Media Star — Even Though She Built a Fanbase Without Instagram, Facebook and Twitter
"I do feel like the OG of a lot of this and I was definitely very before my time," she told THR. "When I first came in this industry as a teenager in New York City, there was no social media whatsoever. I was just being myself and creating a brand on my own without any of these tools. I created that genre of celebrity. Now kids can be in their bedroom with an iPhone and build a brand and persona and I think that’s awesome. It’s a whole new world and I love it. It feels good to be a part of something so huge."
Still, she’s happy she wasn’t distracted by documenting her life on her iPhone while growing up. When asked if she wishes social media was around as a teen socialite, she said no.
"I feel like kids nowadays don’t know what real fun it was. When I was a teenager in New York, it was so much fun going out. No one was on their phone. No one was taking pictures or doing any of that. We were just there to literally have a good time. So I don’t think it would have been as fun because people would have been on their phones the whole time.
She Loves and Trusts Her Fans So Much, She Let One Stay in a Hotel With her in Ibiza
"My one fan Raul, his Instagram name is @parisslaysurfav. I’m obsessed with him. I saw he had commented on someone else’s post, which said, ‘I need to come to Ibiza [for Hilton’s DJ residency at club Amnesia], but I can’t find a hotel.’ And he commented back, ‘I just worked five jobs. I saved up enough money for a ticket. I can’t afford a hotel, so I’m just gonna stay on the bench at the airport,’" Hilton recalled. "And when I read that, I just started bawling and told my fiancé, ‘I’m just going to invite him to stay with us for the weekend.’ So I wrote him and he came and stayed with us. We had the best time."
Gigi Gorgeous Is an Inspiration
"I’m really inspired by her. I just love everything about her," Hilton said. "From her makeup to the way she dresses, she really lives up to her name. She’s just gorgeous inside and out."
She Manages All of Her Own Social Media
"It is a ton of work. Thank God I have an amazing team capturing all the moments. It’s a job in itself, but I actually do all my social media myself," she said. "That’s the hardest part. I know a lot of celebrities I talk to, they tell me they don’t even go on it. I’m old-school."
And don’t expect her to stop. Ever.
"I’m an empire. I love what I do. I love staying in contact with my fans. I love keeping everyone updated. I love sharing my life. I can’t wait to have a baby one day and put them in cute little Snapchat filters," she added. "It is tiring because I’m always traveling and doing all this on my own, but I’m never going to stop."
Paris and Nicky Hilton Celebrate Mom's Birthday and This Famous Teen Joined
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