Bette Midler Slammed After Comments on Britney Spears Documentary

by Jennifer Shea

Actress Bette Midler has joined other celebrities, including Sarah Jessica Parker, in tweeting out “#FREEBRITNEY” recently. They did so in the wake of a new documentary, “Framing Britney Spears,” about the pop singer’s conservatorship and publicity battles.

Bette Midler’s Past Comments Come Back to Bite Her

The documentary details the way the tabloids and some supposedly respectable journalists, like Diane Sawyer, wore Spears down. They, along with her father, ultimately drove her to cede control of her life to the conservatorship, according to Mediaite.

But now a HuffPost contributor has called attention to Midler’s past remarks on Spears. For example, in 2003, Midler was asked to comment on an MTV Video Music Awards performance by Spears, Madonna and Christina Aguilera. In it, the singers swapped kisses.

“I mean those two ladies don’t really give a damn what I say. But I think it’s irresponsible in a way,” Midler said, per the Daily Mail. “It’s kind of tacky in a way to say that I’m not responsible for the fact that there is, you know, 10 or 11-year-olds watching this show.”

Moreover, in 2006, Midler called Spears and Lindsey Lohan “wild and woolly sluts” in an Extra interview.

The Unauthorized Documentary

Spears is aware of the unauthorized documentary, a source told Entertainment Tonight. But she reportedly has not seen it.

“She’s always made aware of any important new releases that pertain to her life and career,” the source said. “And this was no different. She hasn’t seen the documentary because she never likes to focus on what others say about her.” 

Still, Spears took to Instagram recently to share a video of herself performing “Toxic.” She also offered some thoughts on life away from the spotlight.

“I am taking the time to learn and be a normal person,” Spears posted. “I love simply enjoying the basics of every day life!!!! Each person has their story and their take on other people’s stories!!!! We all have so many different bright beautiful lives 🌹🌸🌷🌼!!! Remember, no matter what we think we know about a person’s life it is nothing compared to the actual person living behind the lens 📷✨!!!!”

The documentary is the creation of The New York Times Presents. It’s a renamed monthly version of that company’s Netflix show “The Weekly.” The New York Times reportedly considers video a major format for promoting its brand into the future.

Previous installments of the series have explored the making of a pop star and a teenager who hacked public figures’ Twitter accounts, among other topics.