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Mara Wilson calls on media for ‘terrifying’ treatment of child stars Britney Spears – Deadline

Mara Wilson wrote an essay for The New York Times criticizing the treatment of young stars, including Britney Spears, Drew Barrymore and Amandla Stenberg, by the media and Hollywood.

The actress, known for her appearance in Mathilde and Mrs. Doubtfire, shared the essay on Tuesday. She begins her article by describing how an interview with a Canadian newspaper went wrong. What was put together as an interview about an upcoming film has become an article suggesting that Wilson had her time in the spotlight and would be going down dark paths – a series of events she calls “The Narrative.” Wilson’s treatment, however, is not specific to itself, as it draws parallels to how the tabloids and media have treated Britney Spears.

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“Her story is a vivid example of a phenomenon I have witnessed for years: our culture builds these girls just to destroy them,” Wilson wrote. “Fortunately people are realizing what we have done to Ms. Spears and are starting to apologize to her. But we still live with the scars.

Wilson remembers the inappropriate interactions she experienced while working on a number of films in the 90s. Never appearing in “anything more revealing than a knee-length summer dress,” Wilson recounts the way the media and fans have objectified and sexualized his pre-teens, despite his best efforts. From people asking her about her romantic relationships at age six to men writing her love letters in their 50s, Wilson said she was “ashamed” of every uncomfortable moment of unwanted attention.

“Hollywood has decided to fight harassment in the industry, but I have never been sexually harassed on a film set. My sexual harassment has always come into the hands of the media and the public, ”she continues.

Wilson acknowledges that unlike Spears when she came, she had a support system in the form of family and close friends. She wrote that she knew she had some control over her finances and how well she was in the public eye.

She notes that the pop star didn’t have the proper space to deal with personal issues like her divorce and motherhood. Due to the constant attention of the paparazzi and the media, “the narrative was forced on” Spears, continuing to make him a show for tabloids and gossip.

“The saddest thing about Ms. Spears’ ‘breakdown’ is that it never needed to happen. When she split from her husband, shaved her head, and furiously attacked a paparazzi car with an umbrella, the narrative was forced on her, but the reality was that she was a new mother struggling with major changes in his life. People need space, time, and care to deal with these things. She had none of that, ”she wrote.

Wilson’s editorial, titled “The Lies Hollywood Tells About Little Girls,” follows Hulu’s Coaching Britney Spears doc shed light on the media and the general public’s treatment of the superstar.

Read Wilson’s full article here.

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