Mark Borkowski, one of the country’s most successful PR agents, believes Spacey will have to choose his roles carefully if he is to restore his career, partly because the public may not want to see him portraying characters that abuse power. “It’s all about the content,” he says. “Any failure that he has from now on will be a nail in the coffin of his career, so anything he does while there is this spotlight on him needs to be significant, meaningful and good. The story mustn’t be about him, it must be about what he is doing.”
“Rebecca Loos was one of the last great kiss and tell stories,” says PR expert Mark Borkowski. “Back in those days, you’d get millions of eyeballs on the Sunday papers, and these headline splashes were real watercooler moments. Looking back now, Rebecca Loos was definitely treated badly. Beckham remained Saint David and she was painted as this scarlet woman. She might have come out of it with a bit of money, but her reputation and her private life was carved up forever.”
Top Gear producers fear for future of the show in wake of Andrew Flintoff’s horror crash amid claims only professionals could be allowed to take part in dangerous stunts
PR guru Mark Borkowski said Flintoff’s injuries were clearly worse than first thought and raised concerns over health and safety used by officials at Top Gear.
He told MailOnline this week: ‘Anyone sensible looking at this will see pictures of Freddie Flintoff looks a pale shadow of what he once looked like.
‘He must have been pretty badly injured if he was out of commission for nine months still sporting those scars. It suggests his injuries might have been more serious than we thought.
‘The question mark is can Top Gear come back from this? If they’ve managed the news cycle which they have over these injures, the question is Top Gear viable in the future?
‘Replacing people like Clarkson, Hammond and May proved to be very difficult and if Freddie Flintoff isn’t coming back to it then there will be a problem getting the chemistry right.
‘Then there’s the true extent of what happened will soon come out. Can the BBC keep risking their presenters like this? This is the second major accident that should never have happened.
‘It is going to be difficult to get presenters insured on that show. Two accidents have happened there.
‘No matter how safe you’re trying to be, you’re still trying to create exciting entertainment which Top Gear has been doing for years.’
Mark Borkowski, the British PR agent, said the scandal had echoes of the fake reviews that have proliferated on Amazon. They led the company last year to take legal action against five brokers who were encouraging almost 350,000 people to write misleading reviews. Borkowski said the practice was damaging to the credibility of the film industry.
“The idea of being paid to write a positive review is anathema to a serious critic,” he added. “Film publicity has become increasingly commoditised as the money has fallen out of it. It shines a light on a system which is becoming fairly corrupt.”
Borkowski said it demonstrated the unhealthy power sites such as Rotten Tomatoes had in influencing business decisions. “Hollywood had a backlash against publicists wielding too much power and being able to blacklist journalists from interviews but the one thing it needs is transparency,” he added. “It now seems we are in a race to the bottom in terms of trust.”
‘I’m puzzled why they are coming’: Harry and Meghan are set to touch down in the UK on Sunday for European tour
PR guru and brand expert Mark Borkowski said he expects Meghan to use the trip to gain publicity. He told MailOnline: ‘This remains a Cold War between houses still in conflict. To those outside looking in, it appears that Meghan is constantly looking to intersect the news agenda’.
He said that a portrait of Meghan that was remarkably similar to one of Harry’s mother was ‘was perfectly timed at a time the world was remembering Diana’ on the 25th anniversary of her death this week.
Mr Borkowski said: ‘It appears she [Meghan] is a modern celebrity that is defined by her media profile. This is a pedantic explanation to suggest that the visit will be one that will be in the full glare of the media, she will be using every occasion to regenerate her narrative. It’s a new form of photosynthesis – converting media energy to extract the nutrients for continued brand fame’.
Mark Borkowski, the founder of Borkowski PR, spoke to the Mirror exclusively and noted how the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have experienced an adjustment, especially Harry. “It can’t be easy for him [Harry] stuck in Montecito away from what he was conditioned to be – this servant to the Royal Family and the state. That was what he was bred to be,” Mark said.
“I think that, you know, they will be bewildered about what they can do next,” Mark said, “Given the fact that anything that they’ve touched, it’s got overhyped and hasn’t delivered.” Mark believes that the current track that Harry and Meghan are on isn’t the right one for them.
“They don’t have a track record to be content producers. You just don’t become a content creator overnight. You need a huge team. You didn’t get a sensation that they had the right people around them. So all these things starting to derail,” Mark said, “I would say that they’re beginning to hurt slightly financially. Because, you know, they tried to set up this, foundation or whatever they were doing out of America, but it was very still trading off the royal connections.”
Mark seems to think that the reason Meghan and Harry are hurting is because they didn’t handle the split as well as the Royal Family did. “The royal family did a very good job where they sidelined them, they didn’t comment, whatever comment they had, it was always brief and beautifully copywritten. They haven’t taken the ball back and throw it back to them, they’ve just isolated them,” he said.
Helen Skelton’s decision to quit BBC will ‘open doors and drive her to success’: PR experts say presenter’s ‘girl next door image’ will win her new advertising deals and TV roles – and she could be tempted back to Beeb with ‘lucrative’ pay offer
PR guru Mark Borkowski said Ms Skelton’s career could bloom because of her decision and said she will be buoyed by Hollie Willoughby’s new mega-money deal with ITV – with hope of a similar lucrative offer from the Beeb soon.
Mr Borkowski added the BBC must ‘cling on’ to Helen, who will make big money when she is ready to return to work after a tumultuous two years in her personal life.
And a deal will be in the offing because she is very popular with viewers and listeners alike, who are drawn to her bubbly personality and natural ‘girl next door’ persona, he claimed.
‘With a good team behind her she will be assured of a lucrative future’, Mr Borkowski said. ‘I think with the Holly Willoughby news of her mammoth pay deal, the BBC should cling on to her.’
Helen Skelton’s decision to quit BBC will ‘open doors and drive her to success’: PR experts say presenter’s ‘girl next door image’ will win her new advertising deals and TV roles – and she could be tempted back to Beeb with ‘lucrative’ pay offer | Daily Mail Online
As PR guru Mark Borkowski pointed out, the Sussexes “have zero track record in drama or producing anything of consequence”. Describing the adaptation as a “playbook” attempt by Harry and Meghan to resurrect their media careers after their Spotify deal was axed and other production ideas were vetoed, he added: “They are so far off the radar. I suspect there is more to this than meets the eye.” Borkowski suggested that Penguin Random House, the publisher of Spare, “probably” helped do the deal, because it also put out Meet Me at the Lake.
William and Kate’s “charm offensive” and “master class in image branding” has left the Duke and Duchess of Sussex “in the shade,” according to global PR and branding guru Mark Borkowski, who added: “Their image now far outweighs Harry and Meghan’s social media issues and their attempt to conquer Hollywood.”
The latest YouGov quarterly poll last month confirmed that Meghan is now by far the least popular of the four royals in her own home country, with 40 per cent of those polled saying they like her, compared to 23% who dislike her, giving her a net approval rating of +17.
In sharp contrast, Princess Kate’s net approval is more than double that at +35, making her easily the most popular British royal, with 46 per cent saying they like her and only 11% saying they do not.
PR and brand expert Mark Borkowski praised the couple for improving their PR profile by focusing on a “positive” narrative based on their commitment to their roles and their family.
Borkowski said: “William and Kate have created numerous official and informal photo opportunities, projecting a positive and united image as a couple.
“This curated and idealized image indicates their determination to own the narrative of hard-working, empathetic young royals.”
The PR expert was particularly impressed by the publicity choices the Princess of Wales made during the Wimbledon tennis tournament.
He told Page Six: “The recent appearance of Kate pre-tournament with the ball boys and girls was a great stunt.
Harry and Meghan will produce Netflix film after buying rights to £3m novel about parent dying in car crash
PR guru Mark Borkowski questioned why publishers Penguin Random House sold it to them.
He said: “The rights for this could have cost up to £3million.
“Although if it’s a best-seller, you wouldn’t be handing it to Harry and Meghan.
“There’s some amazing drama producers out there. Why would you give away a prize asset?
Penguin Random House published Harry’s explosive book Spare and it is thought ex-actress Meghan could have a personal connection to the Toronto-based author – which may explain how they have landed the deal.
“It is a massive wake-up call,” Mark Borkowski, a PR executive, said. “The timing of when they jumped on to the Dylan bandwagon was very close to Nike. The two things were a perfect storm for the naysayers to dive in. “If you look at the great beer advertising throughout the decades — it’s been peerless. “Some of the ad agencies have lost that spirit. They are more interested in how advertising campaigns should look rather than what it sells.”
PR expert Mark Borkowski indicated Josie could soon be set to launch a solo career in TV after he explained: “Television is very, very fast-moving, you don’t sit around and wait because then you’ll become the ‘This Morning person.’
“Supporting Holly was a huge break for Josie, her agents will be thinking, ‘How do we get something out of Holly’s shadow, that’s Josie’s own gig?’
The American Beauty and House Of Cards star, 64, was found not guilty of nine sexual offences alleged by four men between 2001 and 2013, following a trial at Southwark Crown Court.
Spacey was one of the most recognised faces in Hollywood until allegations of sexual misconduct were made in 2017, with streaming giant Netflix cutting ties with the actor.
However, celebrity PR and brand expert Mark Borkowski is not so sure.
“Certainly the result has put a lot of the sort of noise that’s surrounded this case behind him,” he said. “The question is, does this verdict allow Kevin Spacey to be Kevin Spacey? To be that iconic actor who has oodles of talent to regain his position as one of the A-listers of Hollywood?
“Sadly not. We live in a corporate world now and raising money, getting insurance, all those other factors exist on social media, where mainstream media has not got the same power.”
Before the court case, in an interview, Spacey said there were directors and producers “ready to hire me the moment I am cleared of these charges in London”.
Despite that happening, many filmmakers might still be wary of working with Spacey knowing any project could still be “dogged by negativity”, Mr Borkowski said.
The double Oscar-winner may now be considering a return to the silver screen, assuming no blemish remains on his name. But the PR expert Mark Borkowski said Spacey, 64, would struggle to secure big Hollywood roles despite his acquittal. “As an actor, he is an extraordinary talent. I remember seeing him in Richard III and I couldn’t really believe his physical prowess and his skill. But entertainment is corporate these days. There are huge sums of money involved,” Borkowski said. “I think it’s highly unlikely that a big franchise will come knocking on Kevin Spacey’s door while this level of negative publicity hangs around him. I don’t believe the likes of Disney or the big US studios will take that kind of risk. However, when you look at Johnny Depp, he has managed to find some very interesting, independent projects [since facing domestic abuse allegations]. The world is a very big place with many different attitudes and values. We’ve seen many people who’ve been accused of things, or thrust into cancel culture, finding a career path – despite the noise on social media.”
Calling in these witnesses may also have been part of an underlying strategy from the defence to have gay A-Listers rallying to Spacey’s cause, and potentially impress the jury with a narrative of victimisation. “The celebrity factor can have an overpowering impact, subliminally,” says Mark Borkowski, a crisis PR consultant and author. “Elton John was quite a star witness for him.”
“Indiana Jones and Mission: Impossible just about got across the line. But it doesn’t seem to be affecting Barbie – in Leicester Square you can’t walk anywhere without seeing lines of pink people.”
For 331 years Coutts’s reputation for guaranteeing the utmost discretion made it the bank of choice for the rich and famous – including King Charles and every member of the royal family since George IV.
Now Coutts finds itself a very high-profile target in the latest UK culture war, following a decision to cut ties with its former customer Nigel Farage, after a review by its wealth reputational risk committee decided thath his views “did not align with [the bank’s] purpose and values”. The affair, say crisis management experts, risks “destroying Coutts’s reputation, if not its entire business”.
Mr Borkowski said: “It’s a very cold and lonely place and people just see the bright side of fame. We don’t talk enough about the prefabricated hell that people live in when they’re famous.”
He also said that “families” who are not the celebrity do not get “considered” and have to deal with the fallout of a controversy like this.
Speaking about how the BBC is feeling at this time, he said the organisation is “suffering from PTSD” after a series of crises.
He said: “We’re going into a completely different rules of celebrity, different rules run by a social media crowd, who are not empathetic, and are just craving the story.