Britney Spears’s father Jamie responds to Free Britney movement: ‘People have it so wrong’

Clémence Michallon
·2-min read
Britney Spears at the premiere of ‘Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood’ on 22 July 2019 in Hollywood, California (VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)
Britney Spears at the premiere of ‘Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood’ on 22 July 2019 in Hollywood, California (VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)

Britney Spears’s father Jamie Spears has responded to the Free Britney movement advocating for the end of the conservatorship on the singer’s life and finances.

Jamie shared his side of the story via his attorney Vivian Thoreen, who spoke to Good Morning America on Thursday.

“I understand that every story wants to have a villain, but people have it so wrong here,” Thoreen told the programme.

She added: “This is a story about a fiercely loyal, loving, and dedicated father who rescued his daughter from a life-threatening situation. People were harming her and they were exploiting her. Jamie saved Britney’s life.”

Read more: Britney Spears’s conservatorship and Free Britney movement, explained

Established in 2008, the conservatorship has come under renewed scrutiny in the wake of the release of the documentary Framing Britney Spears.

The programme has also sparked a more general conservation about fame, mental health, and the treatment of Spears and other celebrities by the public and the media. Justin Timberlake, Spears’s former partner, apologised to her and to Janet Jackson following its release. That apology was recently the subject of a Saturday Night Live skit.

Attorneys for Britney Spears and her father recently attended a hearing over how Jamie should share power with The Bessemer Trust, a financial company recently appointed as co-conservator.

Thoreen had made the case that Jamie should not give up rights and powers that he previously held under the new agreement. A judge overruled Thoreen’s objection, and Thoreen later told The Associated Press that Jamie “looks forward to working with Bessemer ... in the best interests of his daughter”.

Spears’s attorney Samuel Ingham III indicated on that occasion that Britney Spears wants her father to be removed from the conservatorship, stating: “It is no secret that my client does not want her father as co-conservator. But we recognise that removal is a separate issue.”

In November 2020, Ingham said in another court hearing that Spears won’t perform live again as long as Jamie remains on the conservatorship.

“My client has informed me that she is afraid of her father,” Ingham said at the time. “She will not perform again if her father is in charge of her career.”

Asked about those statements on Good Morning America, Thoreen said that Spears and her father had “many conversations” throughout 2020 and spent two weeks together “hunkered down in Louisiana” early in the pandemic.

“In that time, Britney never expressed those words to her father,” the attorney added. “She’s never asked him to step aside.”

The Independent has contacted Ingham for comment.