Jamie Lynn Spears Addresses Rumors That Britney Is Retiring From Music
By Paige Gawley
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Britney Spears' days of making music aren't behind her. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the 38-year-old singer's sister, Jamie Lynn Spears, shares that, though Britney isn't making music right now, she has no plans to retire from the business completely.
"Right now, she's quarantining in L.A. But, in general, she's kind of just relaxing. And I think that's good. Britney deserves that. She's worked her a** off," says Jamie Lynn, who recently told ET that she was quarantining with her sister. "So if she wants to make another album, great. But if she doesn't feel like it, she doesn't have to. She's given the world a lot. I don't think there are plans for anything -- at the moment."
"Obviously, right now, she's just trying to quarantine. She's taking it day by day," the 29-year-old singer-actress continues. "And when she wants to make music, she'll make it. I don’t' think you can ever retire someone from their passion."
The interview comes on the heels of the 20th anniversary of Britney's album, Oops!... I Did It Again, which, Jamie Lynn says, was an incredible time in their lives.
"I look back at that time as the best time of my life. All of the highlights run through my head like a movie montage. Before Oops! came out, I was like, 'My sister sings, that's so cool.' But after that album was released, that's when it really clicked for me that she was on her way to becoming an icon," Jamie Lynn says. "With Oops!, Britney really came into her own, who she was as a young woman, and she was getting to share that with the world."
"... Oops! is when Britney's fame went from household name to absolute superstardom, in my opinion as a young girl observing it all. That's when things around me started to change," she adds. "She had to have security everywhere, hotels were a little nicer, and we got to fly in the nice part of the plane. I remember thinking, even at 9 years old, 'This can't be our reality.'"
Jamie Lynn notes that she considers her sister "a living legend," a compliment Britney doesn't seem to get.
"She waves me off and is just like, 'Whatever, whatever, whatever.' But I still try to explain that to her," she says. "People always ask me, 'Is there a lot of pressure being related to Britney, someone who is an icon?' And the answer is no, not really. If anything, it's an honor to be the sibling of someone who worked very hard and created a dream and a legacy that will last forever."
"I'm so proud of Britney for everything that she's been able to accomplish and the impact she's had, not just on pop music but the industry as a whole," Jamie Lynn continues. "And the best part about being a living legend is that it's not finished. There's always more to come."
As a result of looking up to her sister throughout the years, Jamie Lynn says Britney's influence on her life has been "crucial" for her, particularly as she navigated teen stardom while starring on Zoey 101 from 2005 to 2008.
"Having Britney as an example was crucial for me. Not only did my sister build me up, but she made me feel like I was the star when she was clearly the star," Jamie Lynn says. "Britney was always really open and honest with me about the good and the bad that comes with this industry. And that's what gave me the confidence to say no sometimes. If I hadn't had someone like Britney to warn me, I probably wouldn't have had that confidence to say, 'No, I've seen this. I know where this goes.'"
"I was so lucky, because I had someone who's walked the road, and she's walked it so successfully. So having her tell me, 'You can say no here. This is something I didn't want to do, I did it and now I regret it' -- or whatever it was -- that has been my secret weapon," she continues. "She walked through the fire and then shared all the secrets with me. Without Britney, I probably would've made a lot of different decisions. I probably wouldn't have valued my personal time, wanting to just be a kid, and I might have said yes to projects I didn't actually want to do."
Now as an adult, though, Jamie Lynn has found a project she does want to do, so much so that she's returning to acting for the first time since her teenage years to do it. In Netflix's Steel Magnolias, Jamie Lynn plays Noreen Fitzgibbons, a young nurse in a small town who gets pregnant amid an affair. While speaking with ET's Rachel Smith, Jamie Lynn revealed what made her take on the role.
"It was one of those things where I fell in love with the character. I felt like I had been her in many ways and I had compassion for the character," she told ET, alluding to her real-life teen pregnancy. "I loved the people who were working on it. They took a chance on me... It really was a big blessing in disguise."
As for what it took to get into character, Jamie Lynn said her two kids -- Maddie, 11, and Ivey, 2 -- were the key.
"You almost have sympathy for the character because as moms, we relate to each other in a way of like, 'I've been there.' Seeing a girl who's struggling to make a family out of a broken family and just wants what's best for her baby, I have compassion for her and I'm tapping into my two children 100 percent," she said. "It makes me look at things differently. How you react in each scene is different than how you'd react if you didn't have that motherly instinct kicking in."
"That's what was so great about the role is, at the time, I felt like I was playing myself -- a mom trying to do the right thing -- and I think that that's the fun part about acting," Jamie Lynn continued. "You get to pull from your own life. Being a mom is a big part of mine, so I love playing Noreen."