Melanie Griffith seemed to be a perfect fit for Hollywood right from her early months of life, with her attractive blue eyes, charming smile, and relaxed personality. Starting as a child model, Melanie quickly became famous, but encountered many difficulties and near-death experiences as she grew older. Despite these challenges, she persisted and relied on time to help her heal. At the age of 60, Melanie has some advice to offer to young women searching for their own path in life.
Like Mother Like Daughter
Melanie started her career in the entertainment industry at the young age of 9 months, following in the path of her mother who was also an actress. She landed roles in TV commercials, modeling jobs, and eventually got her first film appearance on Night Moves in 1975.
Melanie’s striking appearance, characterized by her golden hair and bright blue eyes, made it effortless for her to capture attention from a young age. Although she was on the road to stardom, which she would eventually come to loathe.
Less Than Happy Birthday
Griffith’s mother, the renowned performer Tippi Hedren, collaborated with director Alfred Hitchcock who became profoundly infatuated with her.
Since Tippi did not reciprocate Hitchcock’s affection, he resorted to his go-to method and sent her daughter, Melanie, an eerie birthday gift that she will never forget. Melanie must have been astonished as she opened a box to find a wooden casket holding a wax figure that looked just like her mother.
Looks Can Be Deceiving
Melanie’s peers were likely in school and participating in hobbies such as sports or music, but her mother had enrolled her in a distinctive education program provided by the Hollywood Professional School.
Melanie went to a private school in Hollywood, California that gave children who wanted to venture into showbiz an opportunity to learn in the morning and work in the afternoon to enhance their resumes. She excelled so much in school that she was able to skip a grade.
When visiting a therapist, the initial inquiry often pertains to one’s personal history, and in Melanie’s case, she had a great deal to disclose. Specifically, she attributed various unsuccessful marriages to her upbringing in a fragmented household.
At the tender age of four, Melanie’s parents split up, causing her mother to gather their possessions and depart from their family home, leaving behind the only place Melanie had ever known. Following their separation, her father, who worked in advertising, gradually withdrew from being involved in her life.
Growing Up Apart
During Melanie’s childhood, she spent most of her time with her mother, Tippi Hedren, who is a well-known actress, in Los Angeles after her parents separated. Melanie would often travel between New York to stay with her father and Los Angeles to visit her mother.
Later on, the woman’s dad tied the knot with Nanita Greene, who is known for her acting and supermodeling. Together, they had two additional offspring: Tracy Griffith, who also pursued acting, and Clay A. Griffith, who chose to become a set designer.
She Didn’t Have What It Takes
Despite appearing as an outgoing and bold personality, Melanie is, in fact, extremely shy. Her shyness has posed a significant difficulty for her in the profession she chose, which demands her to be always in the limelight.
She decided to give up modeling after several years, as she discovered that she was not suited for being in front of the camera and striking uncomfortable poses. Instead, she decided to pursue a career as an actress.
When Griffith was just 14 years old, she began dating Don Johnson, who was 22 years old back then.
The media heavily criticized their relationship as their romance was revealed to have a negative influence on the woman, who eventually ended up marrying Don four years later.
Despite the fact that Melanie Griffith is widely recognized for her remarkable acting skills, she is equally famous for being in a long-term relationship with actor Antonio Banderas.
Over time, Griffith’s relationship with Banderas would become her longest and most enriching one, although she had to endure several years of difficulties and emotional pain to reach this point. Her romantic journey is compelling enough to be transformed into a movie.
Rock N’ Roll Lifestyle
Griffith believed that she was making a lifetime commitment to the man she had loved since she was 14 years old when she married Johnson.
Regrettably, destiny had alternative plans for the outcome of this marriage. The pair transitioned from being pure and besotted newlyweds to encountering challenges as individuals who had developed reliance on banned substances and heavy alcoholic drinks. The habit transformed Melanie into a mere reflection of her former self, resulting in her loss of identity.
Denial Almost Took Her Life
According to an interview with Australian magazine New Idea, Melanie acknowledged her addictive tendencies and expressed gratitude for surviving after her initial stay in rehab. However, she also admitted to feeling disconnected from fellow patients during her time at the facility.
During her interview, she confessed to doing a lot of drinking and consuming other substances, but claimed that she never reached the same level of misconduct as some of the people she knew. She spoke candidly and admitted that she simply believed she was enjoying herself.
Marriage Down The Drain
Melanie naturally felt comfortable with her loved actor Don Johnson, who was her mother’s co-star in The Harrad Experiment. However, his impact on her caused great turmoil that had a long-lasting effect on her life.
Amidst the downfall of her romantic relationship, Melanie resolved to focus more on her job. However, this decision proved to be a double-edged sword as it eventually dawned on her that her marriage was beyond redemption. Six months down the line, both parties finally opted for divorce. Looking back, it was a wise career move for Melanie but a heart-wrenching one for her personal life.
Her Most Noted Role
Melanie achieved the role of Tess McGill in Working Girl in 1988, which became her most accomplished and visible film till date.
Griffith’s role in Working Girl garnered her a Golden Globe win and an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress. The film, directed by Mike Nichols, was intended to launch her into a successful acting career. Although it remains one of her most celebrated roles to date, it does not diminish her talent, as she was subsequently inundated with numerous acting offers.
New Love, New Life
Melanie felt torn after her divorce because her ex-husband became envious of her successful career and felt overshadowed by her achievements.
She didn’t meet the man who motivated her to change her life until 1981. She relocated to New York to be with him, Steven Bauer, whom she got acquainted with on the set of a television movie called Army Now. They tied the knot soon after, but when they divorced, it caused her to revert back to her habit of drinking.
During the filming of Working Girl, director Mike Nichols had a serious conversation with Melanie about her substance abuse issues after she showed up to set intoxicated multiple times. This served as a concerning wake-up call for her.
Melanie revealed in a Parade interview that she didn’t give much importance to her future. Additionally, the actress confessed that she resorted to substances to ease her anxieties and fulfill a void she had felt since childhood.
Never The Same
During the 90’s, Griffith received multiple job offers, with varying degrees of success for each role.
Her relentless drive led her to work on multiple popular films, including Shining Through, A Stranger Among Us, The Bonfire of the Vanities, Born Yesterday, Nobody’s Fool, Milk Money, and Now and Then. But it was during the filming of Two Much that her existence was forever transformed when she encountered the person she would later identify as the greatest love of her life.
Couldn’t Stand Being Alone
Once Steven Bauer and Griffith tied the knot, they gave birth to a son they named Alexander. They attempted to maintain their relationship primarily for the well-being of their child, but it proved to be more challenging than they had initially anticipated.
Griffith’s addiction was the final burden that overwhelmed her, as she disclosed feeling isolated and despondent. She revealed in an interview that she resorted to drinking to alleviate her distress and loneliness, confessing that she was unhappy whenever she was alone.
After the end of her unsuccessful marriage with Bauer, Melanie swiftly reconnected with a former lover.
Melanie felt let down with the direction of her life and the behavior of her previous spouse, so she sought consolation from someone familiar. She yearned for a dependable and supportive companion, who would stay by her side regardless of the circumstances. Her desire was for a partner who comprehended her weaknesses and accepted her just the way she is.
Griffith underwent a highly stressful period in her life and had a tough time dealing with it. In addition to achieving mainstream success in Hollywood, which can already be nerve-racking, the actress also gave birth to her second child during this time.
Melanie gave birth to her second child with Don Johnson named Dakota Johnson. Dakota’s fame and her struggle with substance abuse were starting to take a toll on her and her emotional pain was becoming more noticeable.
Cheats And Lies
After her departure from the Hazelden Addiction Treatment Center in Minnesota, Melanie returned to Don Johnson’s embrace.
The couple got back together and professed their love for each other, leading them to remarry in 1989. After their reconciliation, Melanie gave birth to their daughter Dakota. Although their second marriage lasted longer than their first, it was eventually plagued by Don’s reported infidelity and drunken public outbursts, causing them to get divorced in 1996.
Instead of dwelling in the past and regretting her decisions, Melanie decided she is much better off channeling her inner self when she was handed the role of a free-spirited substance user in the film Another Day In Paradise.
Her performance was so incredibly accurate, critics raved about her performance and argued about it being the best one of her entire career. Melanie was on a roll, but by the end of the decade, things changed for the skilled actress.
It’s All Relative
Melanie had one child with Don Johnson, named Dakota. She was born on October 4th, 1989, and made Melanie into a mother for the second time.
Dakota’s big screen debut was during her appearance on the comedy-drama film Crazy in Alabama, where she acted alongside her mother. Unlike her mother, Dakota preferred to stay away from work until she was done with her studies. Once she graduated, the young actress could be spotted in films such as The Social Network and Fifty Shades of Grey.
She Had It Coming
After starring in several big screen films, Melanie thought she might mix things up by attempting to perform on stage. She auditioned for the role of Roxie Hart in the Broadway production of the musical Chicago, and immediately got the part.
Ben Brantley, a New York Times theater critic, gave her a great review when he wrote that “Ms. Griffith is a sensational Roxie, possibly the most convincing I have seen… [the] vultures who were expecting to see Ms. Griffith stumble… will have to look elsewhere.”
Award For Worst Actress
Melanie was not one to quit while she was ahead, but unfortunately had a hard time finding prominent roles like before.
In the early 2000s, the her career slowed down significantly. After starring in a few independent films like Forever Lulu and Cecil B. Demented, the actress was nominated for a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress, which hurt her reputation as an actress tremendously. It wasn’t until 2003 that Melanie decided to give her acting career a start over.
Drink The Pain Away
Talking to Vanity Fair about what led her to turn to substances instead of seeking help, Melanie replied: “I was never loved unconditionally. Booze gives you a feeling, a physical sensation … a buzz inside your body that takes the place of something you should have had when you were a child.”
As it turns out, this abuse started when Griffith was only 10-years-old, as she would drink wine “like a soft drink. I was medicating myself so I could escape my pain and insecurities.”
Getting Her Life Back Together
After Griffith split with her second husband, she spiraled downhill into an abyss of no self-control. She felt alone in the world and was unfamiliar with being single after being in relationships since she was 14 years of age.
For the first time in her life Melanie checked into rehab. This move came after Don Johnson convinced her it was the right move. He had been clean for five years by then and reconnected with his ex during her stay at Hazelden.
A New Perspective
Melanie had struggled with substance abuse throughout her life. It seemed as though this had become a consistent theme in her life and that she had spent most of her life in conflict with herself.
However, after making it through rehab, the actress had a totally new lease on life. For the first time ever, she was seeing the world through sober eyes. This gave her a newfound joy and enabled her to be a better mother and role model for her children.
While filming Two Much, Melanie was introduced to co-star Antonio Banderas. There was no denying there was an instant connection the day the two met on set, although to be quite honest, the dynamic duo didn’t exactly go through extensive attempts to hide what was going on when the cameras were off.
Banderas was only just breaking into the industry and making a name for himself in the Hollywood scene, starring in movies like Philadelphia, Desperado, and Assassins. But more importantly, Banderas was still married.
Forever On My Arm
Melanie and Antonio were the embodiment of true love. As if it was not obvious enough, Melanie inked her hubby’s name on her upper right arm and framed the bold letters with a heart shape.
The two were so in love and it seemed as though if any of Griffith’s marriages could make it, this would be the one. They had a daughter together, Stella, and it seemed like, despite Melanie’s troubled past, this relationship was the one that was going to stick.
Becoming A Mother Again
Melanie had already managed to raise two children in her previous relationship with Don Johnson. Although the path of motherhood had been a difficult one for her to adapt to, she had learned a lot of the lessons she needed to be a good mother to Stella.
However, the actress admitted later in life that she never would have been able to do it without the constant love and support that she received from Banderas. Together, it seemed like the couple could achieve anything!
For Love Or Money
For the first years of their marriage, Melanie and Antonio made the decision to keep their finances apart. Melanie had already tied the knot twice before, and although this third marriage seemed much more promising, life had taught the actress that one can never be too careful.
The two even made an effort to make sure that whatever earnings they may have made between ’96 and ’04 would remain in the hands of whoever worked for it, a call many found odd.
In Sickness And In Health
In the year 2000, Melanie had another relapse. But this time, it was Banderas who held her hand as she entered the rehab center.
It has been a decade of pushing through, but something in her life triggered the emotion of craving that familiar feeling. This time, however, her addiction was directed toward prescription painkiller medication. Banderas stood by as his wife who struggled to find inner happiness but knew he loved her too much to let her go through the process alone.
For Better Or Worse
Giving a joint interview for Primetime in 2002, the couple told Diane Sawyer that the relapse caused tension in their relationship, but they bounced back. By the time 2004 came, Griffith and Banderas had a change of heart and realized their love was too strong to worry about cash flow.
After confiding with their legal counselors, the happy couple signed an agreement that altered their financial situation, making what was his hers and vice versa. It seemed like the right, romantic idea at the time – but then the inevitable happened.
In June 2014, Melanie had had enough. She filed for divorce from the man she called her husband for 18 years, and to this day admits it was one of the hardest things she ever had to do.
Although the two remain good friends to this day and had a dignified divorce settlement, Melanie still aches to this day about giving her all to a marriage that ended up exactly like her previous ones. Thinking back about her marriage, Melanie explained to Porter Magazine why this relationship was doomed from the start.
Lost A Lover, Gained A Friend
After splitting up with the Shrek star, Melanie sought company in a different way. She made an effort to work out on a regular basis, and on one fateful day, she met Khloe Kardashian through the gym trainer the two share.
Khloe thought it would be a good idea to have her mother, Kris, and Melanie meet, since they had similar interests and thought they could hit it off. As it just so happened, the two became best friends in no time.
Cancellation After Cancellation
Melanie always favored branching out of her comfort zone, so she made an effort to challenge herself professionally quite often. Unfortunately, not all attempts ended on a positive note, which is exactly what happened to the once-movie star who tried her luck at the WB sitcom Twins and other TV series called Viva Laughlin.
The two shows were both short lived and canceled after only a few episodes. She also acted in a Banderas-produced pilot for a show titled The American Housewife, which did not get picked up.
Call it a midlife crisis or whatever other names you want, but Melanie was convinced in her decision to go under the knife 20 years ago.
In an attempt to go back to her more youthful look, the Working Girl star went ahead with her scheduled facelift – but by the time she was recovered from the numbing anesthesia, her doctor unveiled a face she no longer recognized. While her skin prior to the surgery might have had the occasional wrinkles, the one she had now felt inhumane.
Griffith understood there was not much to be done and that she had to deal with the consequences, convincing herself that despite turning out much different than she anticipated, she still resembled her old self. The media, on the other hand, was not as kind.
As if her pulled face was not enough, the star revealed she has also been injecting Botox into her face, hoping it will stop the aging process she found herself obsessed with. The comments regarding her looks hurt, but she was not about to stop.
It was not until 2017 that the star candidly admitted she was done with the constant criticism and realized it was time to go back to being her old self.
She went under the knife again to reverse the facelift she had back in the day and for seven years now has been dissolving the Botox, praying it will assist in providing her with a more natural look. During her interview with Porter Magazine, she looked already much closer to her former self and said, “Hopefully I look better!”
Misery Loves Company
Speaking of her relatively recent friendship that has been blossoming with reality star and momager Kris Kardashian, Melanie explained their mutual grounds, saying: “We’ve both been divorced a couple of times, we’ve had a few kids and we’ve had situations in common – life-changing ones. I’ll be having a [bad] day, the lowest of the lows, and she’ll come over, sit on my bed and be right there with me.”
However, it is interesting to know if Kris shares Melanie’s latest expressed feelings towards romance.
Big Heart, Big Pockets
Melanie is not only a softie when it comes to her romantic relationships. The remarkable actress also believes in giving back to the community, which is why she assisted in organizing a 5k walk to raise funds for the Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles.
The goal was to raise enough in order to support the opening of a new state-of-the-art pediatric inpatient facility. Melanie also participated in the hospital’s 2012 Noche de Niños gala and presented the Courage to Care Award.
Dealing With Disappointment
Despite announcing their divorce was a friendly one and even making the effort to appear side by side in Bandera’s 2014 film Automata – a premiere that took place amidst their divorce proceedings – Melanie ended up feeling hollow after this last divorce.
After four failed marriages and mothering three children, she admitted to feeling very pessimistic about future relationships, claiming that more than ever, she just wants to make it on her own. However, her experience has taught her something that she wishes to pass on.
The Academy Award nominee attended her daughter’s New York premiere of How To Be Single, where she was asked what her best advice is for women learning how to be single and make it on their own. To everyone’s surprise, Melanie Griffith’s answer was the farthest thing from what all expected.
Her surprising advice became a highly-discussed topic on social media and was mentioned several times in online magazines like US Weekly and People – it almost seemed as though she had become an entirely different person.
I Do – Not!
The 60-year-old actress replied: “Don’t get married! There’s no need… You don’t need to get married to have a child anymore, it’s not like there’s a stigma on a child, and getting married, you either go through the whole bulls**t of a prenuptial, or if you want to get divorced and you don’t have a prenuptial, then you wish you had a prenuptial.”
But that was not all Melanie had to say, as if the this statement was not a shock enough as it was.
Marriage Is Archaic
Griffith then revealed she was serious about following through with her advice, too. That is why she never intends on tying the knot ever again.
Marriage has brought a whole other side of Melanie, one she did not like or recognize. “Why not enjoy the person and have a good time and do whatever?” she asked, “live together, don’t live together — but marriage seems archaic to me.” Then, Melanie gave her marriage to Banderas as an example.
Time To Herself
Porter Magazine published a revealing interview with Griffith, who opened up about her recent divorce: “I think part of the reason my marriage to Antonio fell apart was because I was stuck; nobody else is to blame.
It’s just that I personally got stuck and I won’t let that happen again, I want to enjoy life, I want to do whatever I want to do.” As for what she’s seeking in life now, Melanie replied she is shy with men now and dedicates most of her time to friends.
In Her Genes
Born to a model mother and a Revlon executive father, the apple didn’t fall too far from the tree, and Brooke Shields was a born star made to be in front of the cameras.
Fight For Legal Rights
Shields’s mother and a photographer were involved in a legal dispute in the 80’s in regards to photographs taken of Brooke. These photos were meant to appear in a book called Sugar and Spice, but this was not the case in the end, and the legal battle was to do with the rights to these photographs since Brooke was a minor at the time. The courts ruled in favor of the photographer, yet if Brooke was considered as a child performer rather than a model, her mother would have won.
Life Changed Forever
Brooke may have been scouted to become a model before her milestone first birthday, but she also encountered another life altering event early on – her parents’ divorce. However, at the same time she began to model, and during this time she was cast in an ad for Ivory soap. This lead her to be was named “The Most Beautiful Baby in America.” This paved the way to what would become her long lasting career in Hollywood.
At First, Everything Seemed Perfect
While the little girl dubbed “The Most Beautiful Baby In America” started her life differently than other kids, she also attempted to live it like everyone else and have a normal upbringing. She took up hobbies such as ballet and had a great love for her horseback riding lessons. She also learned to play the piano, and maintained these hobbies while also continuing to pursue her modeling career at the same time. She was getting the best of both worlds.
She may have shown the cameras her gorgeous smile, making everything in her life look great. But inside, her world was crumbling. Brooke’s mother, Teri, decided to take complete control of her career, taking the role as “momager” for her daughter after claiming that she would have Brooke’s best interests at heart since she knows her daughter best. However, after taking on this role, the pressure became too much for Teri, and it made her turn into an alcoholic, affecting Brooke’s life in many ways.
Exploited As A Child
Teri’s emotional state started to spiral downwards when she was criticized for allowing her daughter to be in the movie Pretty Baby and act as a child adult ‘worker.’ Further into her career, Brooke was in more controversial roles and, at 11-years-old, Brooke was involved in questionable scenes on screen, which faced mixed reviews towards the film. While some saw having a minor in this film as groundbreaking, others deemed it inappropriate. People began questioning Teri’s management skills and they way she mothered Brooke.
Her First Love
Rumors sparked further when Brooke was spotted spending time with fellow child star actor Scott Baio. While she was being criticized for roles above her years, these romance rumors also plagued conversation that Brooke was a child in the grown-up spotlight. Baio was known for his role as Chachi Arcola on the sitcom Happy Days, and many years later, Brooke revealed she had in fact been Scott’s first girlfriend when the acting teens dated during the 70’s. They were pictured attending the CBS Television Competition Special together.
He Wouldn’t Let Her Go
Brooke’s big moment came when she was featured on the front cover of Seventeen magazine in 1978. It was this photograph that garnered attention from fashion guru and American designer, Calvin Klein. When noticing her picture on the newsstand, Brooke immediately caught his attention, and he knew then and there that he was looking at an “it” girl. At the time, Klein was launching his denim line, and he wanted to guarantee that Brooke would model his jeans.
Banned From Networks
However, more controversy was caused when Brooke was cast to be overly mature in the televised commercial for Calvin Klein. The producers tried to break barriers with socially acceptable norms by allowing Brooke to speak a highly suggestive sentence wanted for the nature of the ad. Two networks banned the commercial when it showed 16-year-old Shields sitting in a suggestive position and looking up into the camera saying, “you want to know what comes between me and my Calvins? Nothing.”
The Blue Lagoon, directed by Randal Kleiser and filmed on Turtle Island in Fiji, tells the story of two young children who were left on an island with no parental guidance or societal restrictions. The tale shows the development of their emotional and physical changes, including reaching puberty and falling in love with one another, regardless of being cousins. Sparking more controversy, Brooke had to testify before a U.S. Congressional Inquiry that some of her scenes used body doubles with co-star Christopher Atkins.
Like many controversies, huge buzz circulated the topic of discussion, and in this case, the buzz meant the film was the ninth biggest box office hit of 1980 in North America, making $58.8 million in the United States and Canada. Even though the film was a massive box office hit and had body doubles for some of Brooke’s scenes, the film received a MPAA rating of R in the United States due to the suggestive nature of the film.
Filthy Rich Teen
Brooke may have begun her career hoping to live the normal life most girls her age were experiencing. But since becoming one of the most recognizable faces in the U.S. for being both an actor and model, she was making around $10,000-a-day by the time she was just 16. By this time she had also appeared on several national Vogue covers in America, Italy, and France and was being recognized globally. In fact, she was a far cry away from living a normal teenage life.
Record Breaking Star
While garnering tremendous success as a child actress, Brooke was given opportunities to make guest appearances on shows most actors and actresses aspire to have the chance to be on during their career. She was the youngest star to ever appear on The Muppet Show and host ABC’s, Fridays, a live sketch comedy show. Her success from her roles in The Blue Lagoon and Pretty Baby may have made her the actress of the moment, but Brooke was a natural in front of the camera.
Ashamed Of Herself
Brooke may have been involved in mature roles as a young star, but it is known that celibacy was a big deal in the Shields family, for both her and her mother. So when Brooke admitted that she and Dean Cain had done the deed at the age of 22, she expressed she felt an overwhelming guilt, running out of the bedroom as if she had “stolen someone’s wallet.” Despite this guilt, Brooke also admitted it would have happened earlier if she had a better self-image.
Constantly Breaking Boundaries
Turning 21 in the United States is a huge milestone in a young adult’s life, and many celebrations are in order. For Brooke, she decided to celebrate this milestone in her life by being featured on the cover of men’s magazine known for it’s mature nature – Playboy. Brooke may have received less criticism for this photoshoot, which of course left little to the imagination, than her previous roles, but there was no denying, Shields was constantly on the hunt to give people something to talk about.
Brooke had many supporters in her life, including the great Michal Jackson. He said, “That was one of the loves of my life […] Her pictures were all over my wall, my mirror, everything. I went to the Academy Awards and this girl walks up to me and says ‘Hi, I’m Brooke Shields. Are you going to the after-party?’ I go, ‘Yeah,’ thinking ‘Oh my God, does she know she’s all over my room?’ Man, we exchanged numbers and I was up all night, singing, spinning around my room, just so happy.”
Michael Even Proposed
Jackson always spoke highly of Brooke – “I think she loved me as much as I loved her, you know? We dated a lot. We, we went out a lot […] It was great”, and Shields even admits that Jackson asked her to marry him several times, saying the two can even adopt a child together. However, while his love for Brooke may have been very strong, Shields just laughed off his comments and any proposals in regards to marriage and children.
They Called Her Fake
At the time of Jackson’s death, however, the pair had cut ties with one another, so when Brooke spoke at his memorial, the media once again criticized the star for appearing too distressed. Shields, however, reminisced about the pair – “Thinking back to when we met and the many times that we spent together, there would be a caption of some kind, which would usually say something like ‘an odd couple’ or ‘an unlikely pair,’ but to us it was the most natural and easiest of friendships…”
Private Jokes Revealed
Crying throughout most of her speech, Brooke read out her eulogy and shared stories of the times between her and Michael Jackson, and the trouble they would get in together. She recalled one story on Elizabeth Taylor’s wedding day when she was Michael’s date, and the two would get into trouble together. The pair snuck into Taylor’s room hoping to catch a glimpse of her dress for the celebration, but on their arrival into Taylor’s room, they found the bride-to-be fast asleep in bed.
Did She Lead Him On?
During an interview with Oprah in 1993, Jackson stated he was dating Brooke, but she admitted to not returning his love. This later led to many people questioning why she spoke at his memorial. Gail Collins from the New York Times expressed her unhappiness with Brooke’s words – “it was a little peculiar hearing Brooke Shields’s weepy testimony about her deep friendship with Jackson given the fact that she told reporters that the last time she saw him was at Elizabeth Taylor’s eighth wedding in 1991.”
Strong Is Beautiful
Being the “It” girl of the moment, Brooke had a platform to promote anything and everything. During the 1990’s, while many at the same time were promoting physical fitness and femininity working together, Brooke could show women everywhere that it can be done and she had what was required to promote women’s athletics. She appeared in healthy lifestyle magazines such as Health and Fitness, where she spoke of her eating habits as well as her exercise routines that keeps her in her best shape.
Brooke’s former romantic links include names such as Liam Neeson and singer Michael Bolton. While neither of these relationships lasted very long, Brooke was also linked to other A-list celebrities, but after being around the dating scene, she decided it was time to settle down. She then met tennis star Andre Agassi in 1993, and the two got married in 1997. However, even though she thought she had won the jackpot, the pair had their marriage annulled two years later after a tumultuous relationship.
Brooke’s mother, Teri, never approved of her daughter’s relationship with Andre and as a result, this caused a heated feud between mother and daughter. In fact, the relationship between Brooke and Teri got so bad that Brooke decided to fire her own mother as her manager, after more than 30 years of filling that role. However, after being married for two years, Andre confessed that he had been hiding a substance abuse addiction from his wife and this is what caused their marriage to breakdown.
Her Hidden Talent
Having pursued her modeling career since she was just 11-months-old, Brooke decided it was time to put her modeling on hold and show another side to her in the two time Golden Globe nominated TV show, Suddenly Susan. Moving to the TV screen, Brooke found herself in a whole new environment compared to the one she had known from a young age. It was time to prove herself, and she was doing this alongside Kathy Griffin, Judd Nelson, and Nestor Carbonell.
Name Came Under Fire
Brooke has been a major advocate of animal rights organizations and a passionate vegan, which is widely known amongst her fanbase. It was then a huge shock to them all when Shields created her own mink fur coat at Copenhagen Fur, after previously coming out against the fur industry in 1989. Of course, this garnered even more scandal and media attention for the star, as well as even greater scrutiny from animal rights organizations such as PETA for this visit.
It Was All New To Her
Stepping even further away from her comfort zone, Shields tested her limits by performing in Broadway theater productions. And like most things she tried, she found great success. She appeared in musicals Grease, Cabaret, Wonderful Town and Chicago, and also took over the role as Morticia Addams in the Broadway musical The Addams Family in 2011. When her role as Morticia ended, she said farewell Broadway. In addition to ending her theatrical career, she also got rid of her apartment at 458 Broadway.
She Didn’t See It Coming
Feeling unlucky in love following her marriage breakdown with Andre, Brooke was close to giving up on love. But fate gave her another chance when her she allowed her friend to set her up and introduce her to writer and film producer, Chris Henchy. The two were an instant hit and married after just eight months of dating. This time round, however, Brooke decided to keep the wedding low key after having done the big wedding when she married Andre previously.
In fact, the whole wedding was kept as a surprise when family and friends were invited to a dinner which then become the wedding. Taking place on Catalina Island off the coast of California, only their closest circle of friends were invited to watch the small ceremony, while the rest of the world was kept in the dark about the couple’s elopement. Turns out, missing out on the big, extravagant wedding dress, veil and party did not hinder the couple’s future, as they are still together.
Losing Her Father
While Brooke’s mother was known in the public eye, Brooke’s father was a quieter figure in the media but a valued family member. A one time businessman, Brooke looked up to him greatly. Following his death, Brooke featured on the television series Who Do You Think You Are? which traces celebrities’ ancestors and gives them an insight into their family history. When speaking of her father’s death, she expressed – “Loss after loss after loss, it takes a toll on your soul.”
Struggling To Bounce Back
The timing of her father’s death was one that affected the entire family. At the time, Brooke was pregnant with her first child, and only one month away from her due date of giving birth. Unfortunately, her father could not hold on any longer, and he passed away. It was three weeks after his death that Brooke had her first child, on May 15, 2003. The unfortunate circumstances and devastating loss was too much for Brooke, and she began to sink into a deep depression.
She Was Sinking
While she wished to celebrate the birth of her newborn and raise her child following her father’s death, it became an impossible task to achieve as she struggled to cope with her loss. She felt empty and sad, feeling like the world was closing in on her, and she couldn’t get out of it. It was then discovered that Brooke was also suffering from postpartum depression following the birth of her daughter, Rowan Henchy, and her emotional stability was crumbling.
Setting The Truth Free
Several years later, Brooke decided to share her experience of trauma and her battle with postpartum depression. After many therapy sessions on working through her grief, Brooke published her own book titled, Down Came The Rain. During this time she also did interviews with magazines and appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show to discuss her experience of depression, thoughts of suicide and her inability to respond to her baby’s needs. Her book discusses both her struggles of having postpartum depression, as well as the loss of her father.
The Infamous Feud
Following her battle with postpartum depression and her public discussions on the topic, she faced criticism from Tom Cruise when she spoke in favor of an antidepressant that helped her cope with her struggles. Condemning her both personally and professionally, Cruise was quoted saying – “Here is a woman – and I care about Brooke Shields because I think she is an incredibly talented woman – you look at [and think], where has her career gone?” Shields acknowledged his comments as being “irresponsible” and “dangerous.”
Huge Hollywood Blowout
Additionally, she responded to Tom Cruise by saying he should “stick to fighting aliens,” both in regards to his role in War of the Wolds and his belief in Scientology. Not having the experience of being a mother himself, Brooke also said that Cruise should “let mothers decide the best way to treat postpartum depression.” The feud did not end there, and with Brooke wanting to get her message across on how inappropriate Tom’s comments were, she decided it was time to express them in another way.
A Well Deserved Apology
She decided to publicly express her thoughts by publishing her comments in the New York Times by saying – “In a strange way, it was comforting to me when my obstetrician told me that my feelings of extreme despair and my suicidal thoughts were directly tied to a biochemical shift in my body. Once we admit that postpartum is a serious medical condition, then the treatment becomes more available and socially acceptable […] Without it, I wouldn’t have become the loving parent I am today.”
It Was All Over The News
Allegedly, Cruise then privately apologized to Shields, after the media had given a lot of attention to the incident in August 2006. Once it was reported that Cruise had initially apologized, the media waited on for Brooke’s response. They got what they wanted, and she expressed that she felt his apology was “heartfelt.” The biggest shock came when Brooke and her husband were spotted attending Tom and Katie Holme’s wedding just three months later, questioning whether the feud was just for the cameras.
After giving birth to her second daughter, Grier, in 2006, Brooke was back to pursuing her acting career once again. She decided to go back to a network series following her stint on Suddenly Susan, and that is when she landed the role of Wendy on Lipstick Jungle. Although inspired by the popular run of Sex And The City and also written by Candace Bushnell, the sister-series did not have such luck, and after little success, it was canceled after just one season.
Her Most Painful Loss
The year of 2012 saw more loss for Brooke following the death of the most influential and prominent figure in her life and career, her mother, Teri. Despite the tumultuous relationship with her mother which began when she decided to become Brooke’s manager, Brooke has expressed remorse that she never got to confront her mother about their complicated relationship, as well as the loss of her childhood after she posed for Playboy in her teens.
Coping Her Own Way
In 2014, Brooke decided to publish a memoir that discussed her difficult childhood and growing up under the management of her mother. In her memoir, titled There Was a Little Girl, she mentions the fact her mother knew she wanted her daughter to grow up to be a star when she was just five-days-old. She said her mother publicly stated that she wanted her daughter to be active in show business and that “She’s the most beautiful child and I’m going to help her with her career.”
In order to not follow the same unhappy path Brooke went down following her father’s death, Brooke chose to invest her time and energy into her daughters, making sure she could be the best mother possible. She expressed to The Guardian that she must “rule with an iron hand,” and have the parenting skills she so longed for from her parents when growing up. Her priority for her daughters were that they would have an upbringing that was normal and healthy.
No Modeling Zone – Yet
Unlike her mother’s desire for Brooke to be in show business as soon as she was born, Brooke has expressed the opposite plan for her two daughters. Rather than allowing them to be exposed to the life she led when she was a child model and actor, she has rejected the idea of her daughters being in the industry until they finish college, as well as believing that no 15-year-old should be photographed for campaigns or modeling down a catwalk.
When asked to elaborate on this matter, Brooke went onto explain – “It’s a cutthroat and demoralizing business. Plus, they want you when they want you, and you have to be there for auditions and work, and my kids aren’t missing school. If I hadn’t had the intellectual piece as my friend, I would have been more devoured by an industry that has no loyalty whatsoever. You do think because you’ve been in the industry all of your life it will be loyal, but it’s the antithesis of that.”
Afraid For Her Life
The Hollywood glitz and glam may look like the American Dream to many, believing Brooke Shields must be living the ultimate high life. But Brooke had to face many demons along her career, and for nearly 30 years she had to keep away from a stalker named John Rinaldi. One of the most chilling of stories Brooke faced was the fact that John was a persistent stalker and in a bid to get close to Brooke, he had befriended Brooke’s mother years earlier.
A Long Time Affair
John Rinaldi was later charged and admitted during his trial that he had followed Shield’s career for over thirty years after having a childhood crush on her. He confessed that his feelings for the star began when he was 12 and were what he refers to as “typical of any kid with a crush.” Expressing the fact he “thought Brooke was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen in the world,” he began to stalk the star from then on, resulting in his eventual charge.
The decision was made in New York, June 2016, that 49-tear-old Rinaldi would be convicted on four misdemeanor counts of stalking and harassing Brooke Shields. His conviction meant he was sentenced to jail at New York City’s Rikers Island for 60 days, of which he eventually only served 28. Rinaldi tried to defend himself by stating Brooke had falsely accused him and he was just a man in love, not a dangerous man, and that it was Teri who helped rescue him – “She saved my life.”
Modeling Body And Behavior
At age 52, Brooke has been in the limelight for over 50 years and continues to glow in front of the camera. She maintains a presence on social media platforms, with Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts, to which she gives her followers an insight into her own, personal pictures, creating even greater envy online for her well-toned physique. She is also a spokeswoman for Tupperware’s Chain Of Confidence SMART Girls campaign, a program focusing on the importance of teaching girls to nurture their mental and physical well-being.
Positive Outlook Is Everything
Apart from acting, Brooke is heavily involved in supporting causes she passionately believes in. This includes the American Cancer Society as well as organizations dedicated to AIDS research. In regards to her acting career, however, Brooke is constantly looking for a great role to play for her next casting. Explaining that these days she wishes to only work on fun, easy going shows to project the same feeling onto her audience she naturally stays away from any dramatic and over the top roles.
A Birthday To Remember
Just like she commemorated her twenty-first birthday with something memorable, Brooke decided to go all out to celebrate her fiftieth in style. She invited her closest family members, her best friends and other attendees to a party at the Refinery Rooftop in New York City. At the event, while overcome with emotion, her teary eyed husband gave a speech to express the beauty of his wife, both inside and out. Alongside this, guests were given fancy cocktails and surrounded by swing dancers.
Her Honest, Hairy Truth
Starting her career due to her strikingly good looks, Brooke Shields has kept up her beautiful appearance throughout he career and even into her fifties. A woman envied by many around the world because of it, everyone would be desperate to know her secret. She had previously shocked fans when she discussed how she grooms her thick eyebrows – “I don’t wax. If there’s a rogue hair, I’ll probably pluck it or if a makeup artist sees one they must get at, I’ll let them, but I don’t do too much.”
In 2008, it was reported that Brooke Shields would be undergoing surgery and that she was preparing for a two-month break from work. For years, the actress had been suffering from a hammer toe condition, and it got to a point where it was too painful for the star to be comfortable when she walked, a pain that became too unbearable to ignore – “Just walking, I’m in pain and when I work I have to wear high heels all the time.”
Friendship In A Hopeless Place
The friendship between Brooke Shields and Michael Jackson left many Hollywood fans wanting to believe the rumors that the model-turned-actress was in a relationship with the King of Pop. The truth was that the pair had an instant connection based on their childhood history, coming from homes with over-controlling and abusive parents, and they were in fact just best friends who found comfort with one another. Their friendship lasted 11 years, and was hindered when Brooke referred to Jackson in a Rolling Stones magazine interview as “asexual.”
Tired Of Superficiality
Brooke Shields may have been known for her pretty face and was the girl every boy wanted to date. At times she casually dated high profile actors such as John Travolta, while also having been rumored to have had a fling with Monaco’s Prince Albert. Brooke, however, wanted to prove that she had brains and beauty, and in 1983 she graduated from Dwight-Englewood Prep school in New Jersey. Proving she was multi-talented, she then opted to enroll at Princeton University and completed her bachelor’s degree in Romance Languages.
Superman Trumps Abstinence
In her memoir, There Was a Little Girl: The Real Story of My Mother and Me, Brooke also pens down the details of the first night she spent with fellow actor and former boyfriend, Dean Cain. While noting that abstinence was a major deal for the model, regardless of her questionably age-appropriate roles, she met Cain while attending Princeton. The actor has spoken highly of his time with Brooke and publicly stated – “I was in love with her certainly, we were in college, sweethearts.”
Currently, fans of Brooke can find her on a variety of projects. She has been a prominent feature on the hit sitcom, The Middle, where she has played the role of neighbor Rita since 2010. She was the voice of Mrs. Goodman in the comedy series Mr. Pickles in 2013 and was on The Michael J. Fox Show in 2014. As of recent, Brooke appeared on Michael Bolton’s Big, Sexy Valentine’s Day Special in 2017, proving that Brooke Shields is not leaving our screens anytime soon.