Britney Spears was blocked from making purchases as simple as sushi or a new pair of shoes, it has been claimed in a new documentary.
Controlling Britney Spears serves as a follow-up to Framing Britney Spears, which was released earlier this year. Both explore the pop star’s struggles in the spotlight and her battle to be released from the conservatorship that controls her finances, business and personal life.
Among the many revelations in Controlling Britney Spears is that she was allegedly denied permission to partake in minor indulgences using her own money, as per Rolling Stone.
Latisha “Tish” Yates, Spears’s former head of wardrobe, claims she witnessed Spears’s father Jamie and Robin Greenhill – an employee of the company that managed her business affairs – turn down simple requests by the singer.
“Britney would say, ‘Hey, is there any way we could have sushi for dinner?’” Yates recalled. “And I would hear Robin say, ‘You had sushi yesterday, it’s too expensive. You don’t need it again.’”
In another incident, Spears apparently spotted a pair of Skechers shoes in a shop window and asked if someone could get them for her.
Yates volunteered, but was allegedly told by Spears’s manager that the pop star, who has a net worth of around $60m (£43m) “didn’t have any money to be spending on Skechers”.
Yates claimed she ended up buying the shoes using her wardrobe budget and smuggling them to Spears.
Around this time, the documentary says, Jamie Spears was paying himself a reported $16,000 (£11,700) a month as conservator, $2,000 (£1,500) more than he was allotting to Spears.
Court documents submitted by Britney Spears’s lawyer reportedly cite a further $2,000 per month allocated for Jamie Spears’s office expenses, plus 1.5 per cent of the gross revenues generated by the singer’s performances and merch sales.
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Another allegation in the documentary is that the security hired by Jamie Spears monitored Britney’s private phone communications and placed an audio recording device in her bedroom.
A lawyer for the company said in a statement to Good Morning America, “Black Box have always conducted themselves within professional, ethical and legal bounds, and they are particularly proud of their work in keeping Ms. Spears safe for many years.”
Jamie Spears’s lawyer said his actions “were done with the knowledge and consent of Britney, her court-appointed attorney and/or the court”.
“Jamie confirms that he has no access to her calls, voice-mail messages, or texts,” they told the New York Times.
Filmmakers for the new documentary told Variety that Britney Spears’s explosive court testimony in June this year had a major impact on encouraging members of her inner-circle to come forward.
“Britney speaking out in court was really the game changer, in terms of people saying they’re willing to break an NDA, or they felt it was important to speak,” producer Liz Day said.
The Independent has contacted Britney Spears’s lawyer, Mathew Rosengart, for comment.