Winslet weaves a web following
Ordinary folks from 5 to 95
In actuality, fans are just ordinary folks. According to the National Association of Fan Clubs, "While certainly some fan club members are teenagers, many others are middle-aged, or kids, or senior citizens. Fan club members can range in age from 5 to 95, there's no limitations!"
Kate fans display the same kind of variety. In its frequently-asked-questions section, the KWFC says, "For some strange reason Kate Winslet draws a very large group of people that cross many demographic boundaries."
Of the site's 1,300 members, the average age is 22 and includes 40% men and people from 87 countries and all US states except Utah ("must be the water," the site says.) "Many of these people claim that they've never been interested in celebrities until they discovered Kate."
Cara, a mother of two, thinks that Winslet has such a large and diverse following because she isn't just talented, she's a good role model for her young children. Patrick DeDeyn, the Electronic Prepress Technician, thinks it's because her performances in films and television have had such profound effects on her fans. The Webmaster of the Quintessential Kate Winslet believes it's because she is "one of the most beautiful women on the planet."
But whatever the force that drives them there (maternal nature, admiration, or good old-fashioned lust), fan-sites provide people with a community of like-minded individuals. They can chat about, read about, or just look at someone important to them. And in the process, they can develop friendships with people they aren't likely to meet in their everyday lives.
"I've loved having my Kate site and being a part of the Kate fan community on the web," says Sarah Anne. "The vast majority of them are very cool people and I have made some wonderful friends through Kate fandom."