The internet went wild on the night of the 2019 Golden Globes when model Kelleth Cuthbert — better known as the "Fiji water girl" — popped up in the background of dozens of photos of celebrities posing on the red carpet at the big award show on Jan. 6.
But actress Jamie Lee Curtis is no fan of what turned into a viral PR success for the brand and lashed out at Fiji for their tactics after she made it clear that she didn't want to be photographed promoting any products.
"So, my husband [Christopher Guest], who doesn't look at a lot of show business news sites, just mentioned that I was on the CNN website," Jamie wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of herself with the Fiji Water Girl in the background.
"I specifically moved away from the blatant promotions by Fiji and Moet where young women with their trays filled with their wares stood near a designated camera," Jamie explained. "I knew why there was a photographer poised there and I moved away as I said out loud that I didn't want to be doing advertising for either.
"Clearly this angle shows that I moved from her being behind me and yet from the side it still happens," Jamie added. "The sponsors of events need to get permission from people when they get them to take their picture next to products."
Kelleth and other models hired for the night were photographed holding a tray of water in pics of stars including Richard Madden, Idris Elba, Heidi Klum and her new fiancé, rocker Tom Kaulitz, Jeff Bridges, Dakota Fanning, Jim Carrey, Judy Greer, Tony Shalhoub and many others. The Internet soon put her in memes: Fans had her serving water in movies like "Bird Box," "Pulp Fiction" and "The Wolf of Wall Street," among others.
"My brain can't even comprehend what's happening or why people are interested in knowing anything about me," Kelleth told The Cut on Jan. 8, marveling at her new notoriety. "It's such a surreal experience, but I'm having a lot of fun."
She claims she didn't make a conscious decision to be so prominent and look so intense in photographs. "I think from so many years of modeling, when I hear a shutter, I just kind of give a face," she explained.
The model has a favorite photo from the night — and it's not of her and Jamie Lee. "The one where I'm photobombing Heidi Klum kissing her fiancé and showing off her rings is legendary," Kelleth said.