Molly Ringwald Says John Hughes ‘changed’ and Reveals Why She Had To Stop Working With Him

Molly Ringwald and John Hughes once shared a powerful connection. Their symbiotic relationship dominated the film industry in the 1980s, and film fans worldwide are forever grateful for their dynamic. Without it, we wouldn’t have classic hits like The Breakfast ClubSixteen Candles, or Pretty In Pink

But all good things must come to an end. And according to Ringwald, she decided to cut ties with Hughes after years of working with him. She even says that he “changed.” Keep reading to find out why.

Molly Ringwald (as Frannie Goldsmith)
Molly Ringwald (as Frannie Goldsmith) | CBS via Getty Images

Molly Ringwald was John Hughes’ muse 

It’s no secret that the red-haired starlet was the late director’s muse. According to the Brat Pack memoir titled You Couldn’t Ignore Me If You Tried, Hughes valued Ringwald’s opinion over everyone else’s. Despite her young age, she held a lot of power over the famous director.

Molly Ringwald
Molly Ringwald | The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images

If Ringwald didn’t like something about one of his scripts, he’d take it out without question. (He famously removed a sexualized scene in The Breakfast Club for Ringwald.) 

And as the memoir reveals, Hughes and the young starlet had shared a once-in-a-lifetime connection. The two were utterly in-sync and would continuously finish each other’s sentences. 

“I had a mad crush on him,” she confesses. “Without a doubt. It’s pretty heady stuff to have somebody who is so inspired by you that they are writing movies (for you), and studios are doing them.” 

She adds, “I felt like he really got me. I felt completely understood.”

Molly Ringwald stopped working with John Hughes because ‘he changed’

Molly Ringwald
Molly Ringwald | The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images

Sadly, their relationship came to a screeching halt after Pretty In Pink. When Hughes offered Ringwald another leading role in one of his films at the age of 20, she turned it down. Ringwald didn’t love the script and felt as though it needed some improvements. 

Yet apparently, Hughes took her rejection to heart.  

Ringwald revealed why Hughes “changed” in the memoir:  

“When John moved from Chicago to L.A. after The Breakfast Club, he changed,” she said. “I wouldn’t say he ‘went Hollywood,’ but he started looking very G.Q. I don’t really see him anymore. I still respect him a lot, and if he gave me a good script, I’d read it. But I don’t think we’ll work together again real soon.”

Molly Ringwald says John Hughes was ‘overly sensitive’

Molly Ringwald
Molly Ringwald | The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images

She adds, “John felt really hurt by things and people. And sometimes, I feel like he felt hurt by things that weren’t really the way that he thought. I do feel like he felt slighted by people that didn’t really intend to slight him.” Ringwald continues, saying, “He always seemed to be incredibly, incredibly sensitive. Overly sensitive. I mean, there were a couple of times when he got upset with me because he just completely, like, misunderstood.” 

Molly Ringwald
Molly Ringwald | Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

And according to the ‘80s starlet, she felt as though she couldn’t fully grow up into an adult unless she ended her relationship with Hughes. It was a chapter in her life that needed to come to an end. 

“John saw something in me that I didn’t even see in myself,” she revealed to People Magazine. “Eventually, though, I felt that I needed to work with other people as well. I wanted to grow up, something I felt (rightly or wrongly) I couldn’t do while working with John.”

John Hughes sent Molly Ringwald a gigantic bouquet years later

Molly Ringwald
Molly Ringwald | The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images

Ringwald reached out to Hughes years later, in 1994. She told him how important he was to her, according to People Magazine. 

“A week after I sent my letter, I received a bouquet of flowers as big as my apartment from John, thanking me for writing,” she recalled. “I was so relieved to know that I had gotten through to him, and I feel grateful now for that sense of closure.”