The Ballad of Jena Malone & Me: Exploring a Consumer’s Fan Relationship with an Admired Movie Actress Brand

Markus Wohlfeil, Susan Whelan

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

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While consumers have always had a keen interest in the works and private lives of celebrities, some consumers experience a significantly more intensive level of admiration for a particular celebrity and, subsequently, become what are commonly known as fans. However, scant attention has been paid as to how the relationship between fans and celebrities expresses itself in everyday consumer behaviour. Thus, this paper discusses celebrity fandom as a holistic lived experience from a fan’s point of view. By using subjective personal introspection, the lead author provides hereby insights into his private everyday consumption experiences as a fan of the actress Jena Malone. In doing so, the paper demonstrates how drawing on narrative transportation theory may provide a deeper understanding on the nature of celebrity fandom. The study found that a consumer’s fan experiences derive from one’s personal engagement with the celebrity’s artistic work and public persona, which is essentially the consumer’s personal intertextual reading of what s/he perceives to be relevant and “reliable” media texts that can lead to the feeling of “knowing” the celebrity like a personal friend – or even “love”.
Original languageEnglish
Pageson CD-Rom
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Event12th Irish Academy of Management Conference - Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology, Galway/IRL: IAM, Ireland
Duration: 1 Jan 2009 → …


Conference12th Irish Academy of Management Conference
CityGalway-Mayo Institute of Technology, Galway/IRL: IAM
Period1/01/09 → …


  • celebrity fandom
  • Film star fandom
  • fans
  • fandom
  • movie enjoyment
  • experiential consumption
  • Narrative transportation theory
  • narrative immersion
  • autoethnography
  • introspection
  • introspective research
  • Subjective personal introspection
  • Consumer behaviour
  • Consumer Culture Theory

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