Drew Barrymore Is OK with Daughter Olive Being an Actress, But Not a Child Star

drew barrymore holding up a peace sign with her hands

Former child star wants her daughter to be a kid as long as possible

Drew Barrymore is one of the rare Hollywood success stories of a star who turned her tailspin of a life around. Now, the 38-year-old is happily married to art consultant Will Kopelman and the mom to little Olive Barrymore Kopelman. But even though she made it work, it’s clear that she doesn’t want her daughter to be faced with the same challenges.

Promoting her new makeup line, Flower Beauty has had Drew facing questions about if she would allow–or even want–Olive to follow in her footsteps. Talking with fellow celebrity parents Giuliana and Bill Rancic on Parenting.com recently, Drew clearly drew a line between child fame and joining the Hollywood scene at a later age:

G&B: You were a child star—would you want the same for your daughter?

DB: No. I want her to be a kid as long as possible.

G&B: What about when she’s older? How would you feel about Olive joining the Barrymore family business someday?

DB: If it made her happy, I think that would be great.

Drew has also said that she wouldn’t let Olive wear makeup, not even Flower Beauty, until she’s in her teens. Letting kids be kids as long as possible seems to be her ethos, especially when you consider that Drew was smoking cigarettes at 11, smoking weed at 12, and snorting cocaine at 13. What followed was rehab, a suicide attempt, and emancipation from her parents.


Doubtless many moms wait until their kids are a lot older before revealing their own youthful indiscretions. Or maybe they never go into those sordid details, drawing a line between who they were before and after baby. It’s a difficult conversation to have, because you want to present yourself as role model and confidante without losing ground as a parent. But imagine if your every screw-up were public knowledge, like for Drew! Sure, when she gets older Olive could throw at her mom the excuse of “Well, you did it, so why shouldn’t I try it?” At the same time, Drew can talk the talk: She knows exactly why she needs to keep Olive from growing up too quickly. Maybe there’s something to being really honest with your kids about the mistakes you made at their age.

That’s why it’s so great that Drew has Will to help with Olive. Even though she’s been engaged five times and been married twice before, it’s clear Drew was holding out for the right guy to have a child with. She told Giuliana and Bill that Will has been wonderful, and that “I waited to do this until I knew I would have a great partner.” Though his art consultant job has him interacting with A-listers, he seems to have come from a much more stable background. So Olive gets the benefit of both parents as very different (but equally significant) role models.