16 Celebrity Feuds That Were (Probably) Just Publicity Stunts

In the world of celebrities, almost anything goes. And if someone has something to promote, sometimes traditional methods like walking the red carpet and attending 200 press interviews just won’t cut it. Occasionally, a more unique approach is chosen. That might have celebrities hawking their wares on Instagram or engaging in obvious publicity stunts. Part of that could involve a celebrity feud.

We cannot help being gripped by celebrity feuds. It’s like the drama of our own lives, but magnified times a thousand because tabloids, the paparazzi, and entertainment deals are involved. The idea that some of the feuds might not be fights, but marketing ploys is surprising and a little ingenious. They say that there’s no such thing as bad publicity, so the massive amounts of publicity celebrities get from feuds probably isn’t a bad thing for either of their careers. And if the celebrities make up or not, really doesn’t matter because it’s the drama that sells.

16. Demi Lovato/Selena Gomez

Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez were total BFFs, often posing on the red carpet together during their days as the biggest stars on Disney Channel. Then they weren’t seen together for years. The fallout was supposedly because of Selena’s relationship with Justin Bieber (which has plenty of drama on its own). There was also some following and unfollowing on social media, along with comments about how they weren’t friends. Remember the iconic “Ask Taylor” response when Dems was asked how Selena was doing? We sure do. In 2017, there was a big moment when these former BFFs reunited at a big Hollywood event. Considering how news-worthy it was, some speculated what had been going on all of this time. As of recently, their moms have been making comments about their friendship (and Justin), making people wonder just what exactly the deal with Demi and Selena is.

15. Drake/Meek Mill

Here’s the guy versus guy feud. The tiff was supposedly caused over ghostwriting and authenticity after Meek Mill claimed Drake used ghostwriters. There was lots of back and forth, including a Twitter war, and apparently, Drake won. What’s interesting is that Meek Mill says Drake won… and has brought it up multiple times. Considering it has been awhile since there was a proper hip-hop feud (Kanye was busy elsewhere, see below) and other rappers even thought the feud was staged, many non-famous peeps also thought the Drake-Meek beef was fake, too. That being said, Drake and even Meek are still winners because they got a lot of attention from the “war,” with many people listening to both of their tracks for “signs” of ghostwriters.

14. Naya Rivera/Lea Michele

People watched Glee for the singing and dancing, but also for the on-screen drama. There were fights between Rachel Berry (Lea Michele) and Santana Lopez (Naya Rivera) on the show, and if things are to believed, there was some drama behind-the-scenes as well. People often like to pit women against each other, but some wondered how much Naya and Lea actually played into that themselves. There was much speculation about each one clamoring to be the “top” diva on the set of Glee. There were also some not-so-nice lines from Naya and a promise to reveal the juicy details of the feud in her book. Interestingly, creator Ryan Murphy didn’t seem to think anything was out of the ordinary. He thought the drama had to do with sudden fame and admitted both ladies admired each other’s work. What’s more, he said it was some of the males who didn’t get along on set.

13. Nicole Richie/Paris Hilton

Remember when Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton were, like, really close best friends on the first few seasons of The Simple Life? Suddenly in 2005, they were no longer friends. The two separately announced the news but both coyly said they weren’t going to say more, even though everyone wanted to know. Then Paris tried to rope Kimberly Stewart (remember her?) to star in the next season of The Simple Life instead of Nicole. Nicole and Paris both stayed for the show as frenemies, but there was a *big reconciliation* at the end of The Simple Life: Goes to Camp. Since then, their comments have swung back and forth to them being BFFs to not speaking. Is it life or is it all calculated to stay relevant?

12. Nicki Minaj/Mariah Carey

Do you remember the last few seasons of American Idol before the reboot? It’s doubtful that you remember the contestants or the songs, but you probably remember the supposed feud between Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey. When you get two divas together, you can expect some drama, but was the beef between Nicki and Mariah real? Some aren’t sure. There was a video of them arguing and even Randy Jackson said it was difficult to work with them. But, Mariah herself said that it was a “non-existent feud” and producers focused on that rather than the contestants.

11. Lindsay Lohan/Paris Hilton

Remember when Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton were always photographed arm-in-arm going to the trendiest clubs? That came to a screeching halt when Lindsay was linked to Paris’s ex Stavros Niarchos, you know, the Greek shipping heir? That resulted in Brandon Davis and Paris’s infamous video where Brandon called Lindz a “fire crotch” and continued to insult her while Paris “took a phone call” while giggling. Brandon apologized, but the fight went back and forth between the two girls with jabs being thrown on a daily basis. As recently as 2013, there was a complicated fight involving Paris’s brother, Barron Hilton, which Paris allegedly thought was ‘masterminded by Lindsay.’ Given this is still going on and neither Paris nor Lindsay have been up to much lately, plus they both have a history of looking for publicity, many are saying the feud is a way to keep their names in the spotlight.

10. Kanye West/Taylor Swift

Could it be? No one will forget the infamous “Imma let you finish” moment when Kanye West crashed the stage while Taylor Swift was accepting MTV VMA for Best Female Video for “You Belong With Me.” Many were shocked by that, but it is all the stuff that happened after that had people questioning whether any of it was legit. Kanye apologized… a year later… on Twitter. Taylor, of course, wrote some lyrics about the incident and Kanye retracted his comments. Then they were friends for a while before Kanye called Taylor a “bitch,” in his song and said he helped Taylor’s career skyrocket because of the incident. Kim Kardashian got involved. Everyone’s profiting off of the tiff, really. It’s probably why the beef keeps resolving and then reigniting.

9. Katy Perry/Miley Cyrus

Notice a pattern with some of the names on the list? Katy Perry and Miley Cyrus ignited a fight back in 2014 with a kiss. Katy was at Miley’s concert when Miley went in for a kiss. Katy wanted a peck, but almost got tongue — and she didn’t like it. Katy then brought it up in an interview saying “God knows where that tongue has been,” and a Twitter spat ensued. The fact that Katy had a song called “I Kissed a Girl” was not lost on people. Nor was the fact that Miley had a history of doing attention-grabbing things. Ahem, the 2013 VMA performance with Robin Thicke.

8. Lindsay Lohan/Hilary Duff

The Lindsay Lohan versus Hilary Duff feud might be known as one of the biggest girl fights of the 2000s but was it actually legit? Former Disney stars Lindsay and Hilary supposedly got into it after Aaron Carter started going out with Lindsay after dating Hilary for a year and a half. There was some on-and-off drama going on with the two girls showing up randomly at each other’s movie premieres and talking trash. A few years after the drama, they seemed to have put the “feud” to rest saying complimentary things about each other. This made many ask, was it all for more publicity? Or was it just squashed privately? The world may never know.

7. Taylor Swift/Katy Perry

Yup, Taylor Swift and Katy Perry both make it onto the list again. You’re probably very familiar with how this one supposedly started by now. There was apparently some dramz with Katy allegedly stealing dancers from Taylor’s tour. And it’s no secret that they have John Mayer in common. That leads us to Taylor’s “Bad Blood,” which may-or-may-not have been about Katy. People might say that was making the feud worse, but there are legit conspiracy theories out there that highlight why this feud is probably not real at all. The theories point out just how much both parties have profited off of the feud – and how their promotional tours always seem to coincide with some comments about the other person. What’s more, many point out Taylor and Katy have followed each other on social media even when they were almost-definitely throwing shade at each other. Plus, we know for a fact they were once friends. Perhaps the whole feud thing was schemed during a hang out sesh?

6. Kim Kardashian/Taylor Swift

You might think that this one should get grouped with Kanye, but Kim Kardashian has made sure that she has her own beef with Taylor Swift which is why some are speculating just how real the whole fight is. Kim has conveniently added fuel to the Kanye-Taylor feud. On her part, Taylor’s “Look What You Made Me Do” threw shade at Kim and Kanye. Things kept going with Kim sending all her “haters” her perfume. Before that, Kim posted a #TBT of the naked Taylor wax figure in Kanye’s “Famous.” You would think it would be old by now, but people are still eating all the drama up. And Kim and Taylor are clever enough to know that.

5. Ariana Grande/Victoria Justice

Yup, it’s another girl fight. Of course, this one involves Twitter and a meme. It started when Victoria Justice embarked on a solo tour following Victorious leaving many to wonder whether it was behind the show’s ending. In post-show interviews, Victoria and Ariana Grande revealed that they weren’t best friends. When an old video of the duo resurfaced where Victoria said, “We all sing,” many took it to be a petty comment (and memes were born). Fast forward a few years and now the ladies are saying there was no feud ever. What’s the deal? Some say it’s a big publicity generator for their solo careers. It just might be working better for Ari than for Vic.

4. Kim Kardashian/Paris Hilton

They’ve been featured on feud lists with other people. Now, they’re featured with each other. Kim Kardashian was basically Paris Hilton’s stylist in the early aughts, then she had a sex tape released before a reality show — something that people have noted closely follows Paris’s life, as well. And it all came while Paris’s star power was falling. That would definitely ignite some feelings of jealousy but what was interesting was both continued to publicly talk about the other one. And when the public was hoping for a Paris-Kim reunion, they gave us one. Coincidence or well-planned stunt? You be the judge.

3. Miley Cyrus/Selena Gomez

It seems that everyone cannot get enough of Disney feuds. And celebrities clearly know this. Perhaps that’s what was going on with the supposed feud between Miley Cyrus and Selena Gomez back in the heydeys of Wizards of Waverly Place and Hannah Montana. You’ll have to think back to the mid-2000s for this one when they were both teens and they both were crushing on Nick Jonas. A boy is a good reason for a feud, you might think, but Selena said in an interview a few years ago that there was never any feud at all. If that’s the case, people were wondering what the heck was going on when Miley sang “FU” to a cardboard cutout of Selena at a concert in 2014. Hmmm…Perhaps that’s why people think the feud/non-feud is for publicity.

2. Britney Spears/Christina Aguilera

The Christina Aguilera versus Britney Spears battle might be one of the biggest pop princess rivalries of them all, but was it actually a feud? It was easy to pin them against each other considering they were both former Mickey Mouse Club cast members and releasing pop albums around the same time. There were definitely some jabs coming from both sides… yet there were also some glowing comments mixed in. And who could forget that performance and kiss with Madonna? No one would do that with an enemy. That’s why some are calling this a “feud” when convenient.

1. Nicki Minaj/Miley Cyrus

Last but not least, we have the Nicki Minaj versus Miley Cyrus battle. Given that they’ve both appeared on the list before is a suggestion in itself that this feud might not be as real as we once thought. Furthermore, Nicki used the very public platform of the 2015 VMAs to call out Miley for saying she “wasn’t polite” in an interview. The MTV VMAs are known for wild publicity stunts, and we all remember Nicki’s was-it-a-wardrobe-malfunction-or-stunt at the 2014 VMAs. On top of that, Nicki tweeted a massive “LMAO” after the incident. It’s not exactly the first response someone would have if they were upset about something, and celebrity feuds = better ratings.

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