However by watching “western” humans for 50 odd years, I believe I have an answer — its all about power (fame & money are also equal to power)…..or rather “imagined” power.
I believe the average person desperately feels a lack of power in our society…..and when they are presented an (unrealistic) view of stars awesome lives….. for a brief moment it is easy to imagine oneself in the same position — a sports game or some moment in the spotlight — and “feel” that power.
Reliving & sharing those sporting or fame moments with others extends that fleeting feeling.
Conversely, apart from the evil genius type films, intelligence is rarely portrayed as powerful…in fact it is usually portrayed as dull and unexciting.
However the more thoughtful people see beyond the hype and realise those famous media & sports stars are not powerful and more free…. in fact they may well be less free and more constrained than us!
I personally am way more excited by our historical geniuses & their discoveries than any media or sports “star” — and I have little need for power when I can expand & entertain myself quite easily by just thinking & learning about our incredible universe.
The most powerful force in existence has provided puzzles for me to investigate & play with - that takes me way beyond mere human social politics!