The Hollywood Icon Both Brooke Shields And Drew Barrymore Had Weird Interviews With

Life-long friends Brooke Shields and Drew Barrymore share the experience of skyrocketing to international stardom at incredibly young ages and being forced to deal with all the good, bad, and ugly that came with that level of fame. And sadly, this included having to sit through inappropriate, sexualized, and, at times, downright predatory interviews with the press when they were only children. 

Neither career actress was a stranger to being made into tabloid fodder in their younger years. Barrymore famously struggled with substance abuse and mental illness in her childhood, while Shields constantly faced overt hyper-sexualization as a pre-teen and teen due to her breakout role in the 1978 film "Pretty Baby" in which she played a child forced into prostitution when she was only 12. 

Shields and Barrymore commiserated their shared experiences and exploited youths on an episode of "The Drew Barrymore Show," swapping stories of uncomfortable interviews with a certain American TV icon.

The interview that still makes Brooke Shields cringe

While visiting Drew Barrymore's talk show, Brooke Shields described an interview in which she was prodded for different answers from an unnamed female reporter while she was only 10. Barrymore immediately asked Shields if the reporter was Barbara Walters, long-time ABC correspondent and famously blunt interviewer of the rich and famous — it wasn't, but that prompted Shields to share a different story that did involve Walters. 

Shields referenced a 1981 interview with Walters in which the host asked the actress what her measurements were, to which Shields responded with her height and weight. Then, Walters asked Shields to stand up so they could directly compare heights (Shields was 5'10" compared to Walters' 5'5") as her mother watched on. Shields, who was 16 years old at the time, politely obliged Walter's requests (via YouTube). 

"I stand up, and she's comparing herself to this little girl, and I thought, 'This isn't right. I don't understand what this is.' But I behaved and smiled and felt like so taken advantage of in so many ways," Shields recalled to Barrymore and co-host Ross Matthews (via People). And Shields was not alone in her discomfort with the prying interviews.

Drew Barrymore shared a similar experience with the TV host

Drew Barrymore recalled her own story of an uncomfortable Barbara Walters interview that took place when the "E.T." actress was in her early twenties. "She would not relent," Barrymore said (via People). "She was like, 'Talk to me about the drugs and alcohol, talk to me about your mother, talk to me about your bisexuality, talk to me about everything.' It was five, six, seven times over."

Barrymore seems to be referencing a 1997 interview on "The Barbara Walters Show" where the interviewer continued to circle the conversation back to the young actress' hardships, even calling her an orphan and referencing Barrymore's suicide attempts at 14. 

Brooke Shields and Barrymore prefaced their stories with words of praise for Walters, whose heartbreaking death occurred in late 2022, almost one month after the "Drew Barrymore Show" episode aired. However, both scream queens recognized their compromising positions and how they were forced to handle these challenging interviews with tact and poise while they were still impressionable young girls.