Dolly Parton Once Revealed How She Felt Sorry for ‘Poor Little’ Britney Spears’ Ongoing Publicity Issue

For the last few years, Britney Spears hasn’t been the biggest fan of the paparazzi. With her being the Princess of Pop, the intrusive paps have watched her every move and created an image of her that has been damaging.

With all the negative press she received over the years, many celebrities have expressed empathy toward Spears’ ongoing dilemma. Even country music legend Dolly Parton added her voice to the mix when she spoke out about the media’s toxic treatment of the pop icon.

A collage image of Dolly Parton and Britney Spears
Dolly Parton and Britney Spears | Taylor Hill/Getty Images; Steve Granitz/WireImage

Britney Spears has been a target of the press for years

In the mid-2000s, Spears was tabloid gold.

As one of the most famous celebrities in the entertainment industry, Spears was a target of the relentless paparazzi. Most of the attention she received was due to her much-maligned parenting ways and her party-girl lifestyle.

Following her divorce from Kevin Federline, the newly single Spears often partied with Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton, who were notorious for being the bad girls of Hollywood at that time. The Grammy winner’s friends and family were increasingly concerned by her late-night adventures while she retreated into the darkness of the Hollywood party scene.

Paris Hilton and Britney Spears attending the 2008 MTV Video Music Awards
Paris Hilton and Britney Spears posing at the 2008 MTV Video Music Awards | Chris Polk/FilmMagic

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In 2007, the “Gimme More” singer sought mental help by checking into a rehab facility but left the following day. That night, Spears blew up at the paparazzo responsible for taking photos of her shaving her head at a hair salon in Los Angeles. With an umbrella in hand, Spears — after issuing a desperate plea for privacy — attacked the photographer’s car. 

Dolly Parton once urged the media to give Britney Spears a break

After Spears’ headline-making encounter with the paparazzi, many people came to her defense, including singer-songwriter Dolly Parton.

A year following the incident, the country music legend denounced the media’s treatment of young starlets — namely Spears and actor Lindsay Lohan. She though they deserved a break from the constant media coverage.

“Poor little Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan. Ain’t it awful?” Parton told People, per NME. “If those little girls slept with as many men as they say in the tabloids, why their little butts would have more fingerprints than the FBI!”

Dolly Parton attending a press conference for 9 To 5: The Musical in 2008
Dolly Parton attending an event in New York City | Gilbert Carrasquillo/FilmMagic

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Parton then expressed her feelings about Spears and Lohan’s situations.

“I kinda feel sorry for them,” she continued. “We should give those two a break.”

Britney Spears is once again dealing with paparazzi intruding on her life

The tabloids and paparazzi faced criticism in the wake of the New York Times’ Framing Britney Spears documentary (released in February on Hulu), which highlighted the media’s negative coverage of the pop star through the years. But despite that, not much has changed.

On June 29, Spears called out the paparazzi on Instagram, asking them the leave her alone while she vacations in Hawaii.

“So being here in Maui is pretty crazy now … the paps know where I am and it’s really not fun !!!! It’s pretty hard going anywhere cause these silly faces keep popping up to take my picture,” she captioned a short video that outlines the “Do’s and don’ts” for paparazzi, fans and “anyone in (her) space.” 

“Not only do they take my picture … they distort my body and mess with the image and it’s embarrassing,” the singer continued. “I know my body is not perfect but I definitely do NOT look like how they portray me. It’s rude and it’s mean so paps kindly F— YOU AND F— OFF!!!!”