Paris Whitney Hilton (born February 17, 1981) is an American heiress and media personality. She is a great-granddaughter of Conrad Hilton (founder of Hilton Hotels). Hilton is known for her controversial participation in a sex tape in 2003, and appearance on the television series The Simple Life alongside fellow socialite and childhood best friend Nicole Richie. She is also known for her 2004 tongue-in-cheek autobiography, several minor film roles (most notably her role in the horror film House of Wax in 2005), her 2006 music album Paris, and her work in modeling
In recent years Hilton is perhaps most known for starring in a number of her own produced reality shows such as Paris Hilton's My New BFF which was filmed in Los Angeles and aired in 2008 and which also resulted in a second season. The show proved to be a success and was branched out to Paris Hilton's British Best Friend filmed in London, UK and Paris Hilton’s Dubai BFF filmed in Dubai in the UAE. All seasons were broadcasted on MTV. In 2011, Oxygen Channel gave the go-ahead to air Hilton's reality series The World According to Paris following Hilton's everyday life.
As a result of several legal incidents, Hilton served a widely publicized sentence in a Los Angeles County jail in 2007. She is an example of the modern phenomenon of the 'celebutante', the celebrity who rises to fame not because of their talent or work but because of their inherited wealth and controversial lifestyle. Despite the controversies, Hilton's various product lines have been successful with stores in 31 countries. In 2011, Hilton was named "Billion Dollar Entrepreneur" by Variety magazine and was featured on the cover.
Hilton was born in New York City, New York, to Kathy (née Avanzino), a socialite and actress, and Richard Hilton, a businessman. She was raised Roman Catholic and still attends church. She is the oldest of four children: she has one sister, Nicholai Olivia "Nicky" Hilton (b. 1983) and two brothers, Barron Nicholas Hilton II (b. 1989) and Conrad Hughes Hilton III (b. 1994). Hilton is of Norwegian, German, English, Scottish, Irish, and Italian ancestry. She is a niece of two child stars of the 1970s, Kim and Kyle Richards.
Hilton moved between numerous exclusive homes in her youth, including a suite in the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in Manhattan, Beverly Hills, and the Hamptons. As a child she was good friends with other socialites, including Nicole Richie and Kim Kardashian.
Paris Hilton attended her freshman year of high school at the Marywood-Palm Valley School in Rancho Mirage, California from 1995-1996. Then in 1996, when Paris was 14, her family moved to the East Coast. In New York, she briefly attended Convent of the Sacred Heart (while Lady Gaga was a student there) in 1996 before transferring again to the Dwight School. Hilton then spent one year (likely beginning in the fall of 1997, when she was 16), at least part of which was in the spring of 1998, when she was 17, at the Provo Canyon School, a school for emotionally troubled teens. She then attended the Canterbury Boarding School, in New Milford, Connecticut from the fall of 1998 to February 1999 for her junior year, where she was a member of the ice hockey team. In February 1999, the month she turned 18, she was expelled from Canterbury for violating school rules, as she frequently had limos retrieve her from the school to take her to events in New York and New Jersey. After being expelled from Canterbury, she returned to the Dwight School before dropping out a few months later as a high school junior. She later earned her GED.
She denied proclaiming herself as the "iconic blonde of the decade" such as Diana, Princess of Wales, and Marilyn Monroe in the May 2007 issue of Harper's Bazaar. She appeared in the 2007 Guinness World Records as the world's "Most Overrated Celebrity". In a poll conducted by the Associated Press and AOL, Hilton was voted the second "Worst Celebrity Role Model of 2006", behind Britney Spears. According to a 2011 poll conducted by Ipsos, Hilton is the most unpopular celebrity among Americans, with 60% of the responders having an unfavorable opinion on her. Critics suggest that Hilton epitomizes the title of famous for being famous; echoing that sentiment, the Associated Press conducted what they called an experiment in February 2007, trying not to report on Hilton for a whole week. Hilton has often appeared in FHM's 100 Sexiest Women poll, ranking at #34 in 2006, #23 in 2005 and #59 in 2004
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Paris Hilton at IL Sole restaurant in West Hollywood