A CASUAL observer might imagine being rich and famous would make it easier to get a date, with or without the aesthetics, but some of Hollywood’s biggest names have turned to online dating…and it isn’t going that well.
The celebrities hitting the headlines in recent days include Friends star Matthew Perry and Batman’s Ben Affleck, but other names said to have dipped their toe in the online dating pool include former One Direction singer Niall Horan, Con Air actor John Cusack and Charlie’s Angels star Drew Barrymore.
Are they lighting up Tinder?
If you are someone who watches movies rather than appears in them, dating apps like Tinder are a good bet, but the stars of Tinseltown are turning instead to “Raya”, which has been referred to as the “Illuminati Tinder”.
What’s it all about?
Online dating has boomed during the pandemic, but Raya is a private, membership-based, elite social network for VIPs. It launched in 2015, billing itself as “an exclusive dating and networking platform for people in creative industries”.
You can’t just sign up?
To join, users must be referred by an existing member and their application will then be voted on by a committee. Only about eight per cent of applicants are reportedly approved. Membership costs $7.99 a month.
Are the stars aligning?
Perry, 51, was revealed to have matched with 19-year-old personal assistant, Kate Haralson, on the app, after she went public with their conversation from last year. She claimed the Friends star asked her at one point, “Am I as old as your dad?”
She was banned?
Raya, which is strict on privacy and bans users from identifying matches, booted Harrison from the app, as her revelations sparked criticism from Perry’s fans that she was trying to find fame, but she said: “I feel like a lot of guys in Hollywood are talking to all these young girls and it’s something that I think a lot of people should be aware of.”
Raya user Nivine Jay has since said Ben Affleck, 48, wasn’t being a “creep” when he sent her a video on Instagram to prove it was really him after the pair “matched” on Raya and she rejected him, believing it to be a fake profile. The 29-year-old posted the video of him saying, “Nivine, why did you unmatch me? It’s me!” The actor is now said to be reunited with his former fiancee, Jennifer Lopez.
Cusack, 54, took even himself aback when he reportedly added 35 different women he met on Raya to a WhatsApp group chat in 2019. He later called the chat a “weird glitch”.
Drew Barrymore wanted to phone home?
Now 46, the former child star of E.T. confessed during a TV interview last autumn: “I did terribly. I got stood up and I didn’t match with anyone. And my friends gave me this sort of bloated sense of false confidence. They were like, ‘You should try it. You will do great.’ It was a car wreck.”