Brooke Shields: What Happened to the Pretty Baby Actress?

Brooke Shields: What Happened to the Pretty Baby Actress?

Brooke Shields attends the Notable.Art x Hunt Slonem Launch Party on February 08, 2024, in New York City (Photo Credit: Dominik Bindl | Getty Images)

Disclaimer: This article contains mentions of assault. Reader discretion is advised.

Brooke Shields’ two-part documentary Pretty Baby: Brooke Shields premiered on Hulu last April, and it recently marked its first anniversary. The documentary covered Shields’ initial days as a young actress in the 1970s and 80s and the sexualization she faced in Hollywood. Additionally, she delves into her complicated relationship with her mother, Teri Shields, who was also her manager and a lifelong alcoholic.

In the doc, Brooke Sheilds also opens up, for the first time, about an alleged sexual assault she experienced at the hands of a prominent Hollywood film executive decades ago. She also reveals how it impacted her life, reported People Magazine. The actress claimed she never opened up because “people weren’t believing those stories back then.” While Shields did not name her alleged attacker, she claimed she wrote a letter to the individual.

Brooke Shields: What did the actress reveal in her Hulu documentary?

The name of Brooke Shields’ Hulu documentary, Pretty Baby: Brooke Shields, is derived from her first film, Pretty Baby, which premiered in 1978 in the US. The documentary covers the over-sexualization and objectification of Shields in Hollywood from a young age. It reflects on the early stages of her acting and modeling career working.

People Magazine reported that Shields began modeling at 11 months old when she starred in an Ivory Soap commercial. According to US Weekly, at the age of 11, she then played the role of a young girl raised in a brothel in Louis Malle’s Pretty Baby. In this film, she also had her first kiss on-screen with adult co-star Keith Carradine, who is 16 years senior to her.

Both outlets reported that Pretty Baby garnered backlash for sexualizing the young Shields. However, the actress claimed, “It didn’t make me uncomfortable. I got to wear makeup and have red lips. It was just being a princess, like playacting on a creative stage.”

Shields’ next role was in 1980’s The Blue Lagoon, another controversial coming-of-age drama about teens stranded on an island. Entertainment Weekly stated that she was 14 and starred alongside then-18-year-old Christopher Atkins. In the film, the duo played the role of cousins-turned-lovers who have a child after getting shipwrecked on an island. Shields said, “Even though I was playing a character, they wanted to tell the story of my sexual awakening.”

Shields reportedly claimed she felt uncomfortable with a model director on the set of Endless Love (1981). People Magazine stated that the film’s director, Franco Zeffirelli, wanted her to show “ecstasy” in a scene about her first sexual experience. The actress said, “The reason why I was safe was because the minute they said ‘Cut,’ I would prove to everybody that I was not that character.” At 15, she appeared in provocative Calvin Klein ads.

Per the outlet, in 1981, photographer Gary Gross attempted to sell Shields’ nude photographs. Gross had taken the pictures with her mother’s permission when the actress was 10. When the mother-daughter duo moved to sue Gross, his lawyers called her “the Lolita of her generation.” They claimed that the photos could not harm her “provocative child-woman” reputation.

Brooke Shields attended Princeton in the mid-80s, and after graduating in 1987, she faced “the lowest point” of her career. The actress, who was struggling to find work, then met with a prominent Hollywood executive, who sexually assaulted her. Shields did not reveal the individual’s identity but said, “I thought I was getting a movie, a job.”

Shields recalled the incident, saying that they met one evening for a dinner meeting, and he suggested she call a cab from his hotel room. There, he sexually assaulted her. Talking about her harrowing experience in the documentary, she said, “The door opens, the person comes out naked … and he’s right on me. Just, like, wrestling, I just absolutely froze. I thought one ‘No’ should’ve been enough, and I just thought, ‘Stay alive and get out.’ I just shut it out,’” she said, per US Weekly.

People Magazine further reported that the actress blamed herself and added, “I kept saying, ‘Why did I go up with him? I shouldn’t have had that drink at dinner.’ It was really easy for me to disassociate because by then it was old hat. To fight was not an option, so you just leave your body: You’re not there. It didn’t happen.”

Shields further said, “It’s taken me a long time to process it. I’m more angry now than I was able to be then.” She claimed she chose not to name the man because “then it will be about him. And no one gets to own my truth but me.”

US Weekly stated that Brooke Shields wrote a letter to her alleged attacker: “I just threw my hands up and thought, ‘You know what, I refuse to be a victim because this is something that happens no matter who you are and no matter what you think you’re prepared for or not. I wanted to erase the whole thing from my mind and body and just keep on the path I was on. The system had never once come to help me. So I just had to get stronger on my own.”

The outlet stated Shields also grew close to the pop icon Michael Jackson in the ’80s. She claimed they bonded over their shared experience of childhood stardom and described their friendship as “very child-like,” per Desert News. In a 1993 interview, Jackson claimed they were dating during a 1993 interview. US Weekly further stated that Shields said she was shocked to hear his claim. “I called him up and I think I said, ‘This is kind of pathetic that you need to do this,’” she said. The actress also denied being romantically involved with him.

Per Desert News, Pretty Baby: Brooke Shields also focuses on her complicated relationship with her mother and manager, Teri Shields. The actress claimed that as a young girl, she felt responsible for her alcoholic mother. Shields said, “I felt such a responsibility to keep her alive. My life depended on it, so I thought. You know, you just keep the peace…. You never know what to expect with an alcoholic. It wasn’t abusive, but it was emotionally abusive because I felt sort of abandoned every time she wasn’t herself.”

The outlet reported that Shields was 13 when she staged an intervention for Teri to go to rehab. However, the latter’s sobriety only lasted a few weeks. She eventually cut professional ties with her mother in the 90s. Teri died from dementia at the age of 79 in 2012.

Brooke Shields also spoke about her marriage to tennis player Andre Agassi. They married in 1997 and split in 1999. Then, in 2001, she married television writer Chris Henchy and faced trouble getting pregnant. Two years later, Shields got pregnant with her first daughter, Rowan, in 2003 and later suffered from postpartum depression. She also wrote about her experience in the book Down Came the Rain: My Journey Through Postpartum Depression.

Hulu’s documentary Pretty Baby: Brooke Shields is available to stream on the platform.

The post Brooke Shields: What Happened to the Pretty Baby Actress? appeared first on – Movie Trailers, TV & Streaming News, and More.

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