Bella Thorne compares herself to Britney Spears and defends the singer amid controversy over her conservatorship: ‘We all did this to her’
Bella Thorne was moved to defend Britney Spears after learning about the singer’s treatment early in her career and her years-long conservatorship in the New York Times Presents documentary Framing Britney Spears.
The 23-year-old former Disney Star shared with Fox News her distress at seeing how interviewers and paparazzi interacted with Britney, 39, when she was at the height of her career.
‘It was so sad when I watched it,’ she said of the FX documentary. ‘Everything I was looking at made me really, really, really sad knowing that this was happening, knowing that this still happens, knowing that we’re all a part of this, that we all did this to her.’
Outraged: Bella Thorne, 23, opened up to Fox News on Friday about her disgust at how Britney Spears was treated in footage from the documentary Framing Britney Spears; seen in 2019 in NYC
Both Britney and Bella were Disney fixtures early in their careers, with the Toxic singer being a cast member on The Mickey Mouse Club, while Bella starred on the Disney Channel series Shake It Up.
She thought that their shared experiences gave her special insight into Britney’s struggles in the entertainment industry.
‘By the time I was 14 I was very famous and there was paparazzi, people constantly looking at me and trying to touch me and insert themselves around me, around my life,’ Bella said.
‘Fake people, real people, all kinds of people including the public judging me for everything that I do.’
Similar experiences: ‘By the time I was 14 I was very famous and there was paparazzi, people constantly looking at me and trying to touch me and insert themselves around me, around my life,’ Bella said, comparing herself to Britney, 39
Same path: The Toxic singer starred on The Mickey Mouse Club as a teen, while Bella appeared with Zendaya on the Disney Channel series Shake It Up
However, the actress-turned-porn director thought Britney’s massive fame meant she had an even worse experience than other young female stars.
‘Even if you didn’t do anything to [Britney], you talked about her with your friends, you heard about those photos of her hitting that car, someone made a joke in a group — we’re all a part of it. That makes it so much more incredulous,’ she said.
‘The documentary is stunning in the sense that it really gives us the full-blown perspective of the situation. But it’s really disgusting in the sense that here it is in black-and-white, this is what we did to her. My goodness, I just feel literally terrible,’ she continued.
Framing Britney Spears devotes significant attention to the singer’s widely covered public breakdown, including an episode in which she hit a photographer’s car with an umbrella after she had shaved her head.
To Thorne, the events were understandable because Britney ‘just wanted to see her f***ing kids.’
Pointing fingers: Bella laid the blame for Britney’s treatment on everyone. ‘Even if you didn’t do anything to [Britney], you talked about her with your friends, you heard about those photos of her hitting that car, someone made a joke in a group — we’re all a part of it’; seen in 2019
Understandable: The Midnight Sun actress defending Britney for attacking a photographer’s car after shaving her head in 2007, calling her a mother who ‘just wanted to see her f***ing kids’; seen in 2019 in London
‘If anyone would have known that behind these photos it would have been a different situation,’ she added.
Many viewers of Framing Britney Spears came away from it viewing Britney’s ex-boyfriend Justin Timberlake as a villain in the story.
Younger viewers were reminded of his Cry Me A River video, which featured a lookalike for his then-ex girlfriend, and seemed to play into rumors that she had cheated on him.
The NSYNC member was also shown in interviews in which he seemed to brag about having had sex with the Oops!… I Did It Again singer.
Sexist attitudes: The doc features footage of Justin Timberlake joking about having sex with Britney and his Cry Me A River video featuring a lookalike, which reminded Bella of how fans attacked her over cheating rumors; Britney and Justin seen in 2001
That section of the documentary reminded Bella of the scorn she received after some of her fans came to believe she had cheated on her ex-boyfriend Tyler Posie with singer Charlie Puth.
‘I was called a cheater and a slut and that hurt and people still think that was true,’ she recalled. ‘I’ve definitely been through my fair share of people putting some other perspective on me or lying about me publicly. I definitely relate to the male misogny that is placed on all of us, in us women.’
Although the Midnight Sun actress reiterated that she supports the #FreeBritney movement, she thought all of Britney’s fans needed to be doing their part to atone with the singer.
‘I think everyone should go and apologize to her all over social media and say, “We’re sorry. We’re sorry we did this to you. We’re sorry we put this on you. We see you now. We’re here and we see you.”‘
Contrition: ‘I think everyone should go and apologize to her all over social media and say, “We’re sorry. We’re sorry we did this to you,”‘ the actress opined; seen in January 2020
In recent months, Britney has been waging a legal battle against her conservatorship, which is run by her father Jamie Spears.
The arrangement gives him control of his daughter’s finances, despite the initial breakdown that inspired the conservatorship having happened more than a decade ago.
The entertainer recently got a win in court after her father’s attempts to regain sole control of the conservatorship were overturned, forcing him to share that role with Bessemer Trust.
Making progress: Britney recently scored a legal victory after her father Jamie Spears was forced to split conservatorship duties with Bessemer Trust; Britney seen in 2000