Fabricating Celebrity Brands through Scandalous Narrative: Crafting, Capering and Commodifying the Comedian, Russell Brand

Scott Mills, Anthony Patterson, Lee Quinn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)


Most marketing researchers with an interest in the mythic machinations of celebrity culture assume that being implicated in a scandal is detrimental to long-term brand-building efforts. However, our premise is that this assumption is often misguided. We argue that celebrities who court scandal sometimes find that the media coverage it precipitates – especially when the spun narrative is compelling – can significantly increase their brand value. To support our assertion, we begin by reviewing the literature on celebrity scandal. Following this, we illustrate how the creation of a scandalous narrative can fuel a celebrity career. To do so, we investigate the colourful career of the comedian-cum-revolutionary, Russell Brand. We conclude that, when combined, the 3Cs of his scandalous narrative – crafting, capering and commodifying – present, in combination, a viable means of gaining entry into the upper echelons of celebritydom.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)599-615
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Marketing Management
Issue number5-6
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jan 2015



  • celebrity
  • scandal
  • brand
  • narrative

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