Reese Witherspoon: Media treated me and Britney Spears so differently that it felt arbitrary
The contemporaries both had two young children with paparazzi camping outside their homes
Actor-producer Reese Witherspoon says that as a young mother she too was incessantly chased by the paparazzi but the media had arbitrarily decided to brand her 'good' and singer Britney Spears 'bad'.
Witherspoon divorced Ryan Phillippe in 2008. Around the same time, Spears split from Kevin Federline. They both had two young children with paparazzi camping outside their homes. "My children will tell you stories about being in preschool and people climbing on the roofs of our cars," Witherspoon said in a recent interview.
The actor said watching Framing Britney Spears made her feel like one of the lucky ones because she and stars like Jennifer Garner were considered 'good', while Spears and Lindsay Lohan were branded 'bad'. "What if the media had decided I was something else? I would be in a totally different position," Witherspoon said. "I want to say it's my decisions or the career choices I made, but it felt very arbitrary. And kind of sh***y."
Framing Britney Spears, the New York Times Present documentary, looks back at how the popularity of the singing star, who burst on the American music scene in the late 1990s and early 2000s, led to her mistreatment in the media with paparazzi documenting minute details of her personal life.
In 2007, the year she got divorced from Federline, Spears had a meltdown and shaved her head with electric clippers at a salon in LA as paparazzi photographed her. She admitted herself to a treatment facility after that and later that year, lost the custody of her sons.
The singer has been in a conservatorship, a unique legal arrangement that gives someone else complete authority over another person, since 2008.