Superstar model and actress Brooke Shields began early and other than taking time off to attend Princeton University where she obtained her bachelor’s degree in Romance Languages, Shields has been a constant force on the small screen, some features, while also continuing her career as a model.
BROOKE SHIELDS: 11-MONTH OLD MODEL
When we say Brooke Shields began early, we mean 11-months old early. This goes all the way back to 1966 when Shields was in a photo shoot for Ivory Soap. Since that time, she was constantly in front of the camera as a child model, a very successful one at that.
Shields turned her modeling into an acting career, first appearing in After the Fall, a TV movie. She then saw time on Alice, Sweet Alice and then another TV movie called The Prince of Central Park. Then came the controversy.
LAWSUITS, THAT CHILD PROSTITUTE, AND MORE LAWSUITS
Pretty Baby is the movie that really started it all for Shields, in so many ways. She was 12-years old when she grabbed the role as a child prostitute in the movie. She was also 12-years old when she was filmed nude for that movie.
Immediately “child porn” was called into play. How could a director allow such a thing? How can a mother, Teri Shields in this case, who also happened to be Brooke’s manager, allow it? Well they did and according to Brooke Shields, 40-years-later she can look back with no regrets. She told Vanity Fair in 2018, “It was the best creative project I’ve ever been associated with, the best group of people I’ve ever been blessed enough to work with.”
This wouldn’t be the only controversy Brooke Shields would have to deal with as a minor. She was also under fire stemming from nude images taken of her in 1975 by photographer Garry Gross and Playboy Press, which her mother allowed and signed away consent to. Brooke Shields was 10-years old at the time. The lawsuit in question lasted two years and ended in Gross’ favor.
BROOKE SHIELDS IN THE BLUE LAGOON
Controversy continued to follow Brooke Shields and perhaps it was more of her mother’s making. Brooke starred in another controversial movie, The Blue Lagoon, another movie that featured nudity and one where Brooke Shields claims she used a body double for some of the nudity.
The movie was about two teenagers, Shields and co-star Christopher Atkins, who find themselves alone on a deserted island where they are trying to survive, also learning about their sexual awakening at the same time. Brooke Shields had to later testify in front of a U.S. Congressional inquiry stating that body doubles, in fact, were used in the movie.
Like it always does. Brooke Shields continued to work. Her modeling career continued, her movie and TV work continued. She moved on to movies like Sahara, The Muppets Take Manhattan, Brenda Starr, and Speed Zone and that was just closing out the ‘80s.
The decade of the ‘90s was busy for Brooke Shields as her work began to cross over to more TV work. She continued to be seen on commercials, she also continued to model. Her TV work included stints on Quantum Leap, Tales from the Crypt, and The Larry Sanders Show as well as TV movies like An American Love and Nothing Lasts Forever. Her earlier controversy did nothing to hurt her reputation.
BROOKE SHIELDS AND THE KING OF POP
It is no secret that Brooke Shields maintained a special relationship with the King of Pop, Michael Jackson. In fact, Jackson asked Shields to marry him on more than one occasion.
Her response, as she told Rolling Stone (RS), “I would say, ‘You have me for the rest of your life, you don’t need to marry me, I’m going to go on and do my own life and have my own marriage and my own kids, and you’ll always have me.’ I think it made him relax. He didn’t want to lose things that meant something to him.”
As the pair grew older, she began to look at Jackson differently. Again, she told RS, “You saw women who were more sexual, who wanted to throw themselves at him and feel like they were going to teach him,” she recalls, “we just found each other, and we didn’t have to deal with our sexuality.” She also explained to RS, “As I grew up and started having boyfriends, I would share with him, and he was like a little kid who talked about the bases — what first base was, what second base was, and it sounded very odd to the outside, I can imagine, but to the inside, to someone who’s never really left his bubble, you can understand how he would be curious.”
BROOKE SHIELDS KEEPS GOING
Brooke Shields has never stopped working. She pops up from time to time on TV commercials still and her acting career continues to blossom. She was the lead in Suddenly Susan, a series that ran for four seasons. The early 2000s saw her on TV shows like Just Shoot Me, That ‘70s Show, Entourage, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and Two and a Half Men. She was also in Lipstick Jungle and recurring on Hannah Montana.
As the 2000s rolled into the teens, Brooke Shields kept rolling with it. Scream Queens, Nightcap, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, The Middle, and Jane the Virgin became part of her resume. Shields has also done her fair share of voice work. She has lent her vocal cords to shows such as Gary the Rat, Wonder Pets!, Mr. Pickles, and Creative Galaxy.
Brooke Shields has also done her fair share of theater work. She has appeared in a few Broadway musicals, one being in Grease when she played Rizzo. She also played Sally Bowles in Cabaret. Shields performed in Wonderful Town, Chicago, and finally as Morticia Adams in the musical version of The Addams Family. She definitely has talent.
BROOKE SHIELDS NOW
Now 55-years-old, Brooke Shields has put all the controversy behind her. She has two daughters with Chris Henchy, who she married in 1999. Here she is with one of her daughters…
While the relationship with her mother hit a straining point (her mother passed in 2012), she has no regrets about her early career and what it gave her.
Shields continues to pull in acting gigs and there are no signs of her stopping. If you want to learn more about the model and actress, she also published her memoirs, There Was a Little Girl: The Real Story of My Mother and Me, which goes into the many aspects of her rough relationship with her mother.