Postpartum depression, court cases, family problems. Brooke Shields may be one of the rare child stars to sustain success into adulthood. But she hasn’t avoided the pitfalls that often come with achieving fame so young. Here are 20 things that have threatened to derail both her private life and career.
20. Her father’s family wanted her aborted
Not everyone was happy when Brooke’s mother fell pregnant with the future star. Teri Shields was even offered money by her husband Frank’s family to get an abortion on hearing the news. Teri took the cash but couldn’t go ahead with the plan and in May 1965 Brooke was born.
19. It took her seven rounds of IVF to get pregnant
Shields also had her own problems when it came to giving birth. The star underwent seven rounds of IVF treatment before she finally fell pregnant with daughter Rowan. Shields admits she became a “crazy person” during the process, but that she needed to persevere with it for her own sanity.
18. She had to testify about her body double
Shields was just 14 when she starred alongside Christopher Atkins in 1980’s The Blue Lagoon. Unsurprisingly, controversy arose when the movie included nude scenes of the underage actress. But Shields later told a U.S. Congressional inquiry that some of these had been filmed with the help of older body doubles.
17. Shields’ relationship with Atkins soon turned sour
Shields and Atkins enjoyed a brief romance during filming of The Blue Lagoon. But their relationship soon turned sour thanks to their differing attitudes to work. In a 1980 interview with People, Atkins admitted his co-star had become frustrated with his serious attitude to filming and that the pair ended up repeatedly bickering.
16. Her Calvin Klein ad was once banned
Brooks also courted controversy with a Calvin Klein TV ad she shot when she was just 15. In the promo, the actress suggestively says, “You want to know what comes between me and my Calvins? Nothing.” The ad was subsequently pulled from two networks over its provocative nature.
15. She’s the distant cousin of King Louis XIV
Shields made an interesting discovery when tracing her roots on Who Do You Think You Are? The actress found that through many generations removed she was the distant cousin of France’s King Louis XIV. That also meant she was a descendant of Henry IV of France and Saint Louis.
14. She lost her virginity to Dean Cain
Not many people can say they lost their virginity to Superman. In 2009 Shields revealed her first time had been with Dean Cain, aka the lead in ’90s superhero show Lois & Clark. Shields had waited until 22 to have sex for the first time due to a poor self-image.
13. She was Scott Baio’s first girlfriend
But long before dating Cain, Shields also had a brief young romance with another TV heartthrob. Scott Baio, best-known for playing Chachi Arcola on Happy Days, was the man in question. In fact, Shields became his first ever girlfriend when the pair became romantically involved in the late 1970s.
12. She also dated two other major celebs
And her celebrity dalliances don’t end there. Shields also dated singer Michael Bolton and Irish actor Liam Neeson in the early ’90s, although neither romance lasted particularly long. Of course, she also ended up marrying another high-profile name, tennis champion Andre Agassi, in 1997.
11. She once angered PETA
Shields incurred the wrath of PETA when she created her own mink fur coat with help from Kopenhagen Fur. The move came as a surprise as the actress had previously expressed her disapproval of the fur industry. She was also renowned for being an animal rights activist and a vegan.
10. She attended Tom Cruise’s wedding
Shields was left shellshocked in 2005 when Tom Cruise publicly condemned her use of antidepressants while suffering postpartum depression. The actress fought back by arguing the Scientologist should stick to fighting aliens. But remarkably, following a private apology from Cruise, Shields accepted an invitation to his wedding with Katie Holmes.
9. Michael Jackson repeatedly proposed to her
Shields became friends with fellow child star Michael Jackson when she was just 13 years old. Many years later the King of Pop told Oprah Winfrey that the pair’s relationship had developed into something stronger. Shields also claims that MJ had asked for her hand in marriage several times.
8. She’s won three Razzies
Shields has seven major film award nominations to her name. Unfortunately, they’re all of the Golden Raspberry variety. The star was repeatedly given Worst Actress and Worst Supporting Actress nods at the Razzies throughout the 1980s. She even ended up winning three for her performances in The Blue Lagoon, Sahara and Speed Zone.
7. A pre-teen nude shot of her appeared at London’s Tate Modern
Another Shields controversy emerged in 2009 thanks to a photo taken more than 30 years previously. A naked picture of the star was included at a Tate Modern exhibit by Richard Prince. Only one problem: she was aged just ten in it. Following a police warning, the picture was removed.
6. Her mother was a controlling alcoholic
Brooke’s relationship with her pushy mum was understandably strained. Teri took control of her daughter’s career in its infancy, arguing she’d have her best interests at heart. But the pressure soon took its toll. As well as taking over Brooke’s professional and personal life, Teri also became an alcoholic.
5. But Brooke eventually dismissed her as her manager
It may have taken several decades, but Brooke finally ended her turbulent professional relationship with her mother in 1997. The star decided to dismiss Teri as her manager when she got hitched to Andre Agassi. Just two years later, Brooke also parted ways with the tennis legend.
4. She immediately realized her first marriage was a mistake
It didn’t take long for Shields to appreciate her mistake. The actress began feeling regretful just 24 hours after getting hitched: “I kept shaking my head as if I had duct tape across my mouth. It hit me all of a sudden… I did not want to be married.”
3. Her Friends cameo caused a major row with Agassi
One of Shields’ most famous TV appearances came as Joey’s stalker in a 1995 episode of Friends. But this cameo ended up causing a major domestic row. Agassi reportedly broke all his tennis trophies after claiming Shields’ appearance on the show had made him look like a fool.
2. She had a stalker who was sentenced to 60 days in jail
An overzealous fan was sentenced to 60 days’ jail time in 2016 after being found guilty of stalking Shields. John Rinaldi was convicted following a pattern of behavior which began to scare Shields. However, Rinaldi insists he hadn’t done anything wrong and appeared on Dr. Phil to clear his name.
1. She’s banned her kids from modeling until college
Determined not to follow in her mother’s footsteps, Brooke has banned her two daughters from modeling until they reach college. Brooke explained she doesn’t want Rowan and Grier to deal with the demoralizing, cutthroat nature of the business so young. She also doesn’t want them to miss out on school.