Brooke Shields 'Appalled' Over Criticism of Her Mother (Exclusive)

Teri Shields Brooke Shields 1991 - P 2012
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Teri Shields Brooke Shields 1991 - P 2012

Talking to THR two days after her mother and former manager's death, the actress defends Teri Shields: "She protected me."

Brooke Shields says she's been "appalled" by what has been written about her mother and former manager, Teri Shields, since her death October 31st, in New York, following a long illness related to dementia.

Teri Shields had been criticized for allowing Brooke, then age 11, to be cast as a prostitute in 1978's "Pretty Baby," and then a few years later permitting her teenage daughter to star in a series of sexually provocative commercials for Calvin Klein jeans where she says directly to the camera, "You want to know what comes between me and my Calvins? Nothing."

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Shields tells The Hollywood Reporter that when she thinks back on her mother acting as her manager, what strikes her is “how she protected me from so much of what is devastating about being in the entertainment industry -- the rejection, the jealousy, the being screwed-over. The bubble she created around me was the biggest blessing she could have given me. The need to attack her is unnecessary.”

The actress acknowledged her mother’s struggle with alcoholism and says this was the cause of her 1995 action to drop her as a manager.

“I had to leave her because of her addiction. If I had a manager now, they wouldn’t last five minutes if they were an alcoholic,” Shields says. “It was long overdue. I needed to grab the reins and make my own mistakes.”

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Teri, born Theresa Anna Lillian Schmon on Aug. 11, 1933, in Newark, N.J., worked as a hairstylist, a makeup artist for Lord & Taylor and a model before marrying Brooke’s father, Francis Alexander Shields, in 1964. Brooke was born the following year; Teri and her husband divorced a few months after her birth.