Drew Barrymore on Adam Sandler: ‘I knew that we were supposed to be a team’

World premiere of 'Urlaubsreif' (Blended) movie
I know that these Drew Barrymore stories get only a passing amount of interest and I want to change that. I want people to appreciate Drew and how open, quirky and without artifice she is. We last covered Drew’s People Magazine cover story, which I don’t imagine was a big seller for them. She just isn’t that controversial. Drew had so many wise things to say about her troubled youth, about her relationship with her mom, and about the fact that she’s a mom now with a stable family she didn’t have growing up. You get the sense that the only filter Drew has is the one she’s developed naturally through introspection and hard work. Drew isn’t trying to sell us a Hollywood ideal, she’s trying to figure out who she wants to be in the world and she’s telling us about it.

Vulture magazine has some excerpts from Drew’s book, Wildflower, which just came out yesterday. This is Drew’s second memoir following Little Girl Lost, which she wrote when she was just 14. Wildflower is getting glowing reviews from critics and judging from these excerpts, you can tell why. Drew is a good storyteller and her life is interesting. Here is part of Vulture’s summary, and you can read more at the source. Direct quotes from Drew’s book are in quotation marks:

How she convinced Adam Sandler to work with her
She first crossed path Adam Sandler when she was in her early 20s, and she had to “beg, borrow, and steal” to get him to meet with her in person. She showed up to their restaurant chat in a long vintage leopard coat with jet-black hair, pink plastic heels, and sunglasses, while Sandler opted for his classic look: sportswear, cargo shorts, and a baseball cap (some things never change).

“It was definitely not obvious we were supposed to fit as well as I believed because we looked like a preppy and a punk set up on a bad blind date,” she writes. “But I shook his hand with fervor, thanked him for meeting me, and began to plead my case to him. I told him that, for whatever reason, I knew that we were supposed to become a team.” What ensued were two well-received and popular film collaborations (The Wedding Singer, 50 First Dates) and one not-so-good one (ahem, Blended). But regardless of success, Barrymore was convinced that the two were inherently meant to work together. “I knew it. I knew it in my bones,” she continues. “I thought Adam had a goodness that was so unique. I could tell that he possessed something different, and I was drawn to his light. I wanted to make love stories, but I wanted them to have a certain energy that was about true love and chemistry and timelessness, and I was convinced of us doing something together.”

She barely speaks to her mother but still supports her financially
Barrymore was born in 1975 to a young and hedonistic single mother, and after a much-publicized legal battle, she became emancipated from her at the age of 14 (her father, the actor John Barrymore, was only in her life sporadically as well). After this parting of ways, the two have barely made any contact with each other, but Barrymore only has kind things to say about her:

“I still support her — I must know that she is taken care of or I simply cannot function. I am grateful to this woman for bringing me into this world, and it would crush me to know she was in need anywhere. It is not who I am to harbor any anger for the fact that our life together was so incredibly unorthodox. I want only to say thank you to her, because I love my life and it takes every step to get to where you are, and if you are happy, then God bless the hard times it took you to get there. No life is without them, so what are yours, and what did you do with the lessons?”

Her parenting philosophy comes from The Simpsons
The specific episode she loves is called “And Maggie Makes Three,” when the Simpson family is one day looking through a photo album, only for the kids to realize there are no pictures of Maggie in it. As Barrymore explains, the episode tells the story of how Homer unhappily works at a power plant, sacrificing his unhappiness for the well-being of his family, something she can relate to now as a mother:

“Every day he worked in an octagonal room looking at an Orwellian plaque that read, ‘DON’T FORGET: YOU’RE HERE FOREVER.’ And one day when Homer came home he told Marge that he was afraid of his whole life slipping away without him ever getting to live his dream, which was to run a bowling alley. And so they all squeezed financially and made it work and Homer finally got his dream job! He became so happy that even his hair started to grow back! His life fell into place with his wife and two kids, and then suddenly Marge became pregnant. Now of course, in order to earn the living wage his family needed, he had to go back to work at the power plant. And so he did. But at the end of the episode, the kids say, ‘Yes, but why are there still no pictures of Maggie in this photo album?’ and Homer says it’s because he keeps her pictures where he needs them the most, and it cuts back to his office, and they are all taped up in front of him on the plaque for inspiration. But the way he has taped all the pictures of Maggie on the plaque, it has covered some of the words, and it now reads, ‘DO IT FOR HER,’ and that is what he now sees every day. Do it for her. That is it. You show that you love them endlessly. You devote yourself. You sacrifice. You parent also by example. The way you live and the things you achieve and the way you behave will be more evident than trying to convince them of anything.”

[From Vulture]

Vulture has so much more from Drew, including the story of a skydiving class she took with Cameron Diaz, only to be sexually harassed by the crew. (I wonder if those two are still close now that Drew has two kids.) She also adores Steven Spielberg and has some funny stories about how he entertained the kids on the E.T. set. (Once by dressing in drag!)

I love the Simpsons and anyone who gets life lessons from that show is my kind of people. Drew is alright, and I will buy this book and watch her goofy movies. I just hope she realizes that it’s time to put the brakes on her collaboration with Adam Sandler. You can tell they’re sympatico, they’ve made some adorably cute movies together, but Blended was awful.

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World premiere of Urlaubsreif (Blended) at Cinestar movie theatre at Sony Center on Potsdamer Platz.

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These photos are of Drew and Adam at Blended events in the Spring of 2014, right before and after she had her last child. Plus a still from The Wedding Singer! Credit: WENN.com

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48 Responses to “Drew Barrymore on Adam Sandler: ‘I knew that we were supposed to be a team’”

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  1. Jayna says:

    Fifty Dates is such a wonderfully heartfelt movie. I’ve seen it quite a few times and love it every time.

  2. Froggy says:

    I love The Wedding Singer. One of my faves.
    That skydiving story was awful.

    • Nicolette says:

      Mine too and I really like them together. Drew just seems like the nicest, most down to earth person which is a rarity in Hollywood.

    • Liberty says:

      agreed — a great be-lazy-on-the-sofa rom com. They are very cute together on film.

  3. Naya says:

    Its actually a good thing for me when they pair up because I just have one movie to avoid instead of two separate movies.

  4. Esmom says:

    I love Drew but yuck at all the gushing over Sandler. His schtick lost its luster ages ago and the last thing he needs is any encouragement.

  5. Loulou says:

    What the hell, Drew. Her summary of the Simpsons episode just made me tear up.

    • megs283 says:

      me too! I had to remind myself that we were talking about the Simpsons!

      • Isa says:

        It made me cry. My parents brainwashed me against the Simpsons and Roseanne so I’ve never watched ether one. Now I want to watch the Simpsons.

      • WinnieCoopersMom says:

        Isa – are we soul sisters? Mine did the same and I have still never seen either! Add South Park to the list (not that I was interested in that one anyway).

    • Gabrielle says:

      me too! I love Drew Barrymore. She always seems so sweet in interviews. I’d be willing to see another movie with her and Adam Sandler. With a better script they could make it work.

    • Pinky says:

      Classic Simpsons is some of the greatest television and social commentary we’ve produced as people.

  6. SusanneToo says:

    I have adored Drew since ET. She has grown to be a lovely person after so much turmoil in her younger years.

    • WinnieCoopersMom says:

      Her turnaround story is the only hope I have for Miley at this point. It’s too late for Lohan and Bynes.

  7. mom2two says:

    I love Drew. The Wedding Singer and Fifty First Dates were some good movies with Adam Sandler. I might not gush over Sandler, but he was part of her career in film comeback, so I can see why she sticks by him.

  8. paranormalgirl says:

    I kinda liked “Blended.” It wasn’t a great movie, but it was harmless and cute.

    I love Drew Barrymore. I love the way she embraces all that’s gone on in her life and has come out of it as a really good person.

    • InsertNameHere says:

      I agree – Blended wasn’t great, and it had some shticky issues, but it’s cute enough to watch. It’s running all the time on one of the movie channels now, and I have no problem turning it on while I work around the house.

    • Christin says:

      Glad to see I’m not the only one who thought it was kind of cute. They do work well together.

      She has grown up to seem pretty grounded, and doesn’t play the victim card. I like that.

  9. astrid says:

    I’m a big fan of ET and Fifty First dates but not Blended. Sandler has lost his edge.

  10. Bishg says:

    Lovely anecdote!
    The first seasons of The Simpsons (I would say 1-13) were everything! I stopped watching several years ago cause I am kind of a nostalgic type, and didn’t quite like the new turn of the series…
    I too like 50 First Dates (the soundtrack is awesome and it fits perfectly within the story) but every single movie by Adam Sandler I’ve seen after that is insufferably bad.

    • WinnieCoopersMom says:

      I like 50 First Dates and Wedding Singer (havent seen Blended)..The only other one of his I like is Just Go With It. The rest consist of mainly low-brow comedy, not my style. Billy Madison, Big Daddy and Waterboy are perfect for 8th graders and others with lower IQs, IMO.

  11. that time i didn't care says:

    I love Drew Barrymore. She is good people and a surprisingly decent writer…? That Simpsons story made me a little teary-eyed.

  12. GoodNamesAllTaken says:

    I hope I could be as forgiving and loving towards my mother if she had been such an irresponsible person as Drew’s. From what I’ve read, her mother took her to nightclubs and bought her drinks and let her smoke pot before she was even a teenager, so she had an addiction (to alcohol?) by age 14. She has a huge heart, I think.

    • Joaneu says:

      I like Drew a lot myself. She has had her up’s and down’s with her mom and yes, more power to her for doing so. I vaguely remember Jade trying to sell her personal (kid) possessions/photos at one point for money.
      As for Drew’s childhood, it looks rather “tame” compared to someone like Tatum O’Neal. Ryan O’Neal makes Jade look like a nun.

  13. K says:

    One the way she wrote about the Simpsons almost made me cry so wow.

    I loved 50 First Dates…it is a fantastic movie. Always entertaining and she does bring out the best in sandler and I love him.

    I think it says so much about her character that she still supports her mother and can look at her with gratitude. She has such a positive outlook on life and considering how truly messed up her life was that is admirable. She is also right. I think I might get this book.

  14. Daria Morgendorffer says:

    All the yes to her mentioning that episode of The Simpsons. I adore that show and that is one particular episode that is so touching.

    I’ve always liked Drew and it’s nice to see her in a good place in her life. She has been through a lot.

  15. suzanne says:

    I much admire what she did with a bad childhood: she succeeded instead of merely complaining.

    • JenniferJustice says:

      and blaming. She doesn’t see her childhood as an excuse for anything she does today. I love that because so many people tend to use their bad childhoods as justification for bad behavior, bad choices, etc. in their adult life.

      I also admire her attitude toward her mother. I would think that reading that your daughter whom you used to elevate your own social status and everything that involved, has no harsh words for you, but loves you simply for bringing her into the world would be the ultimate “guilt”. I’m sure that’s not Drew’s intention, but if I did my child wrong, their being purely kind toward me would do me in.

  16. anniefannie says:

    Have always been , always will be a Drew fan. it’s so fun to watch her bounce off of even the most jaded of people. David Letterman was putty in her hands and Matt Lauer has talked about how she wow’d him too!
    She easily could come off as twee but her sincerity shines thru…

  17. Dirty Tot says:

    That episode of the Simpsons makes me cry every time I watch it.

  18. Rhiley says:

    Golly, that Simpson’s story made me tear up. Now, I must find the episode and watch it.

  19. Crumpet says:

    Drew is a perfect example of the power of forgiveness. She takes care of her mother, but does not expose herself to her toxicness anymore. She embraces what her flawed mother was able to give her and moved on. Reminds me of Jennifer Aniston and her mother.

    I loved her description of what parenting is about. Sometimes the images of my daughter and my husband are all that keep me going through the day. I want this book.

  20. INeedANap says:

    Sandler infuriates me because after 50 First Dates and Spanglish it’s clear that he is a great actor and storyteller, which makes all his other movies so unforgivable.

    • Korra says:

      Spanglish was great. And that Simpsons episode!

    • Harryg says:

      He was good in Punch Drunk Love too.

    • Jayna says:

      I agree. I love 50 First Dates. I hate movies that repeat things, because I feel like it’s been done to death. But I was so surprised by what a sweet movie it was and felt fresh and original. And Spanglish was also great and not cookie-cutter..

  21. Sam says:

    I love Drew so much. I Love the wedding singer and 50 first dates and haven’t seen blended. I will definitely read her book. I have always related very heavily to Drew and she feels like a kindred spirit.

  22. morgane says:

    I want to watch this episode.

  23. Cath says:

    I like Drew and I also know that Simpsons episode. It’s her good right to use thay ep. for inspiration. But her reality is not exactly the average reality. She’s wealthy herself, her husband is as well. Which dreams would she have to give up for her family? Come on, none of course, she can realize them all.

  24. cd3 says:

    Drew is to Adam Sandler what Kate Winslet is to Leo DiCaprio.

  25. Sarahelizabeth says:

    Love Drew and Adam, regardless of their movies- they both are very giving and do a lot of charity work. Adam picks up trash along the beach almost daily. They are good people. So what if they make cheesy movies. Overall- they also make incredible ones and are great friends. Give them a break eh?
    Punch Drunk Love, Spanglish, the cobbler, 50 first dates and the wedding singer are great. Riding in cars with boys, ET incredible….reign over me – so good. They are both incredibly talented and kindred spirits. I think they just try to bring a lightheartedness to some films. (Blended) but I’d love them to work together again.

    She’s incredible. They are both great parents. I don’t see her marriage lasting much longer. But I wish both of them the best…