Kim Kardashian’s new controversy is worse than her daughter’s stunt casting.

Kim Kardashian will be featured on Variety's iconic Actors on Actors series alongside the likes of much bigger stars including Robert Downey Jr, Emma Corrin and Jodie Foster — raising quite a few eyebrows (and pitchforks), especially given her own daughter's controversial foray into acting

The drama centres on these key questions: who actually qualifies as an actor? And is this really an industry you can buy your way into? 

Actors on Actors is a talk-show style television series produced by Variety which pairs influential actors who interview each other and have intimate discussions about their craft. Usually, the pairs who are placed together have something in common — perhaps they've worked for the same director, or been cast in similar teen rom-coms. In the case of Margot Robbie and Cillian Murphy being paired last season, the two stars shared an iconic pop culture moment (Barbenheimer) that defined the year.

This year marks the 20th season of the show (it releases two seasons a year, and has been running since 2014), and has cast some formidable talent to mark the occasion. Jennifer Aniston and Quinta Brunson will be appearing together, as well as Robert Downey Jr and Jodie Foster, Brie Larson and Andrew Scott, Tom Hiddleston and Anna Sawai, Joey King, and Taylor Zakhar Perez, and Chloë Sevigny with… Kim Kardashian, who have both starred in Ryan Murphy projects (American Horror Story and Feud: Capote Vs. The Swans).

Unsurprisingly, Variety's announcement that Kim — better known for her acting in Instagram-sponsored posts rather than any real films — will be interviewed alongside Sevigney has been poorly received by people who don't believe Kim deserves to be there, or even qualifies as a real actor. At least, not to the level of the other stars on this show (to put it into perspective, the previous season interviewed Paul Mescal, Emma Stone, Bradley Cooper, Emily Blunt, and Anne Hathaway, to name just a few).


Watch: Kim Kardashian's Saturday Night Live Debut. Post continues below.

Video via Saturday Night Live.

"In what world is Kim Kardashian an actor please be so serious right now," one disgruntled X user wrote. 

"Imagine you finally get picked to be on Actors on Actors just to look across from you and see Kim Kardashian," complained another. 

Others labelled the move "disrespectful" and "an insult" to Sevigney, who they felt deserved to be paired with an actor of a higher calibre. After all, Sevigney has been acting since the '90s and is known for her controversial and experimental films like The Brown Bunny, as well as more iconic movies like American Psycho. And she certainly has never appeared in a role as cringe as a voice-acting credit on Paw Patrol: The Movie

"Chloë's been acting since she was in Kids in 1995 and Kim Kardashian started acting in American Horror Story once everyone stopped watching it… do you see the problem here lol," said one X user. 


"That's so disrespectful to Chloë. Kim Kardashian's only real acting job is a mediocre role in American Horror Story and she gets a spot on Actors on Actors next to Chloë Sevigny???? Unbelievable," another chimed in. 

Sevigney is a talented and experienced actor with an entire Wikipedia page dedicated to more than 50 acting credits… hardly comparable to Kim Kardashian's own extremely minimal experience, which consists solely of cameos and side roles — American Horror Story being the exception. 

Whether she did well in AHS depends on who you ask — some have criticised her depiction of cutthroat publicist Siobhan as a bit stiff, though others have pointed out that she really nailed her character's trademark barbed comments.

I actually thought she wasn't too bad in it — though I do have to wonder if her best line deliveries were truly a testament to her acting chops, or if she was simply channeling Keeping Up With The Kardashians (remember when she said "I'm not buying her a fucking pair of shoes. I bought her a fucking career?"). Surely it's no surprise that her best moments are the ones where she is acting as, well, herself.

The announcement of Kim's casting in Actors on Actors also comes a week after she was accused of buying her way into the acting industry, when her daughter North West also debuted in an acting role that she was wholly underqualified for. 

So, it's no surprise that people are so sensitive about it. 

Listen to The Spill hosts explain Kim Kardashian and Jon Hamm's feud. 


North starred as Simba in Disney's 30th anniversary concert for The Lion King, and the performance was nothing short of woeful — which is what you’d expect given North had no acting experience outside of TikTok lip sync videos, but frustrating given it was such a competitive role. 

These two events being so close together has only resulted in harsher scrutiny of Variety's strange casting decision, and opened up an entirely different can of worms: if Kim has enough money, can she buy her way into anything? It's certainly an accusation that has been hounding Kim for some years.

"Why are they letting Kim Kardashian pay her way into whatever she wants? Dead women's clothes, performances of The Lion King, Actors on Actors—she's not even an interesting person to want to marvel at the spectacle," an X user tweeted of the debacle.

The derision towards Kim is hardly new, and in an even more interesting development, it's something another star that's been cast on Actors on Actors this season has been vocal about for some time. 

Jon Hamm (Mad Men, Fargo, Top Gun: Maverick) will also be appearing on Actors on Actors this season with Kristen Wiig — an interesting choice given his long-held contempt for Kim, who he once called "stupid".

"Whether it's Paris Hilton or Kim Kardashian or whoever, stupidity is certainly celebrated. Being a fucking idiot is a valuable commodity in this culture because you're rewarded significantly…. It's celebrated. It doesn't make sense to me," he told Elle UK in 2012. 

Kim defended herself at the time, and noted that she wasn't merely "famous for being famous" but had earned her fame through her various TV and business projects. It's something she’s been saying for years, and honestly, it's true that she has become a formidable player in both the TV/pop culture world and also in beauty and fashion. Love her or hate her, she is everywhere — and the people eat her up. 


At the time Hamm responded by saying: "I don't know Ms. Kardashian, I know her public persona. What I said was meant to be more on pervasiveness of something in our culture, not personal, but she took offense to it and that is her right."

Does Variety's decision to cast her feel weird and undeserved? Yes. 

But, Variety also cast Lady Gaga (who had also just starred in American Horror Story) alongside THE Jamie Lee Curtis back in 2016. While Lady Gaga is seen as creative in a way that Kim Kardashian isn't (and Gaga won a Golden Globe for her performance), it still gives a little precedence to this type of stunt casting and shows that it’s not only new, but it’s also not specific to Kim Kardashian.

At the end of the day, it's got us talking about the show, it's made the public revisit Kim's performance in American Horror Story and look at it critically, and it's got people interrogating what makes someone a real actor — all things that arguably work in the favour of Variety

So, touché, I guess?

Feature Images: Getty.

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