Britney Spears, on Monday, opened up about a since-deleted detailed message on her Instagram profile as she amenably discussed her scandalous interview with ABC’s Diane Sawyer in 2003. She also expressed why she won’t be touring anymore. After being liberated from her long conservatorship while expressing her thoughts, Spears slated the veteran journalist as well as her own camp, who scheduled the interview in 2003.
The iconic pop star revealed that after her much-hyped breakup with Justin Timberlake in 2002, she locked herself in her Manhattan penthouse and “could hardly speak” largely because she was “in shock.” Later, Jamie Spears, Britney’s father, along with three other aides, came to the 21-year-old’s house and convinced her to have an interview with Sawyer about the breakup for ABC News. The fact is this interview is not the latest one when you look at it on the ABC channel, and this raises a bit of a concern.
“Something I never shared when I had that big breakup was that I couldn’t talk afterward,” Spears penned in a now-deleted Instagram post on Monday. “I never spoke to anyone for a very long time. I was in shock. Pretty lame of my dad and three men to show up at my door when I could hardly speak. Two days later, they put Diane Sawyer in my living room. They forced me to talk!!! I was a baby … and didn’t understand but I f**king know now.”
Sawyer disreputably questioned Spears about what she presumably did wrong in her relationship with Timberlake, suggesting she was largely at fault. “You broke his heart, you did something that caused him so much pain, so much suffering. What did you do?” Sawyer allegedly pinched Spears.) She also humiliated Spears over having premarital affairs and made her cry, recording the footage of her while crying even after Spears demanded not to do so. Not just that, she also took out singer’s photos taken for a photoshoot of a sexy magazine, asserting her to confess the photos were too provocative. Sawyer also provoked Spears on accusations of drug use and partying, grilled her for coming late to a premiere, and reprimanded her for showing insensitive gestures to a paparazzi. She also probed her about a scandalous story that accused Spears of having an addiction to shopping.
She expressed, at that time, “I lived in my apartment for a year and never spoke to anyone … my manager put that woman in my home and made me talk to her on national television and she asked me if I had a shopping problem!!! When did I have a problem with shopping??? When I never left my apartment???”
Britney also remembered a part of the interview where Sawyer talked in detail about the singer’s sex life and insisted that Spears was a woman rather than a girl, referring to her “I’m Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman” song.
“She said ‘woman or a girl’,” Spears recollected. “I would like to say now, ma’am, I’m a Catholic slut. You wanna join me at a mass and I can serve your husband my certificate on shopping for anonymous players? I should spend a thousand dollars if I want every day of my life and she can kiss my white ass.”
Camps of Jamie Spears and Diane Sawyer refused to respond instantly to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Following the premiere of the New York Times‘ Framing Britney Spears biopic, Sawyer came under fire heavily after the film showed a part of the journalist’s extreme questioning. Following the biopic’s release, Britney’s fans showed their rage over the interview, labeling it “disgusting” and “poor.”
In a statement given to PEOPLE, Jamie Spears’ attorney Alex Weingarten vehemently denied Jamie’s connection to the interview, claiming he was “completely uninvolved.”
“Mr. Spears has no idea what Ms. Spears is talking about. Jamie never set up any interview with Diane Sawyer and was not present for any such interview,” the statement revealed. “He had nothing to do with Britney’s career at this point and was completely uninvolved in this interview. Jamie loves Britney very much, wishes Britney nothing but the best, and hopes that she continues to seek the help that she needs to stay safe and healthy.”
Also, in her prolonged statement, Spears publicized that she was eventually able to extract $300 from an ATM “and was so proud” of that instant, elucidating that she was “maybe a little” nervous to share that news.
“I’m more embarrassed for my family for coding the fact that i wasn’t allowed to have cash for so long when I worked my little ass off for them,” she inscribed. “I’m embarrassed for the state of California for permitting my father to have me work as hard as he worked me all those years and never seeing a dime.”
She shared a very crude message about her family, who hurt her deeply. Britney Spears openly slammed her family and demanded justice for how their behavior has affected her life.
Looking back, in a lot of ways, Sawyer’s interview was giving the public what it seemed hungry for. It was salacious. It was invasive. It was condescending. It was mean-spirited. At that time, that shaming was often the lens through which celebrity news was delivered, especially at the expense of young female stars — also including Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton. Making it worse, in this case, was that it wasn’t by a mean-spirited blogger type but an established and acclaimed journalist, one who was a trailblazer for women in the field.
When the interviews of Spears with Sawyer reappeared in the documentary, as well as an equally upsetting Spears-Matt Lauer interview from that time period, there was a public call for Sawyer to apologize, though she hasn’t. Earlier this year, when Yahoo Entertainment tried to approach ABC News, a spokesperson refused to comment. Moreover, when Yahoo Entertainment again approached seeking comments over this latest doc, there was no response.
Sawyer has also been censured for other past interviews with superstars, including Whitney Houston, Rihanna, Lisa Marie Presley, and several others.
However, Timberlake has openly apologized to Spears for how he tarnished her reputation after their breakup.
“I’ve seen the messages, tags, comments, and concerns and I want to respond,” Timberlake, 40, expressed after Framing Britney Spears aired. “I am deeply sorry for the times in my life where my actions contributed to the problem, where I spoke out of turn, or did not speak up for what was right. I understand that I fell short in these moments and in many others and benefited from a system that condones misogyny and racism.”
Spears, who experienced a 13 years long conservatorship, has previously revealed that she suffered conservatorship abuse as well. She blatantly blamed her family, especially her father Jamie, who was oppressive & controlling conservatorship in court, for such exploitation in the past. However, Jamie has repudiated any wrongdoing. Spears has also slated her mother Lynne and sister Jamie Lynn, but they also denied the misconduct.
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She stated, “I’m sad for them because I know my value and worth now… and they LOST ME!!!”
Spears showed her gratitude to several celebrity friends, like Jennifer Lopez for “sending me the sexiest heels,” Donatella Versace for “bright dresses and most amazing robe,” and Betsey Johnson for gifting her amazing clothes. Briteny thanked Iggy Azalea & Drew Barrymore for support amid the conservatorship battle.
Britney resolved her statement by expressing she was finally able to buy some amazing stuff like socks, chocolate, and wine with her money, and that moment made her feel “so independent when I came home.”
“Hope you’re all having a wonderful Christmas,” she concluded.