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Hello and welcome back for another episode of Les Deux You Remember This? where we look back on all the stories from Hollywood’s best worst decade: The early 2000’s. A time in history when America found out that with a trust fund, a sex tape, and a dream, you too, could become a star. As always, I’m your host, Dara Laine.
In our last episode, we tried a little something different. Instead of a written episode, we talked to my friend, Landry Allbright where we discussed the early aughts New York it-girl Tinsley Mortimer and her show High Society. This week, we’ll be going back to a storytelling episode where you will be regaled with a tale as juicy as a terry cloth tracksuit. The Feud of Lindsay Lohan and Hilary Duff.
This is a story that takes us to the way, way back of the early aughts, the year 2000. On January 1st, we crawled out of our bunkers, wiped the smear of canned cream corn from our chins, and realized that we were all Y2-A-Okay. And for almost 2 years we got to live in a pre-911 utopia.
A branded Buzzfeed article for Tic Tac Canada expressed this universal feeling with their article “11 Reasons Why the Year 2000 Was the Best.” Reason #1: Harry Potter came out in the year 2000. Reason #3 Hollister opened. Reason #8 the moment Eminem performed Slim Shady at the VMA’s with a swarm of Eminem look-a-likes.
Yes, the year 2000 was just before we, as a nation, lost our innocence. Our biggest White House scandal was the president receiving oral sex from a 21 year old intern who should have known better and resisted the come-ons from the most powerful man in the world because he was married. Boy did we have a lot of laughs at the expense of a young woman not old enough to rent a car.
In the year 2000, people weren’t so uptight. You wouldn’t get fired just for winking at a coworker. Telling your assistant her tits looked great wasn’t a fireable offense. A compliment was just a compliment. And the year 2000 in Hollywood? Well you’d be hard pressed to find a single potted plant in the Beverly Hills Hotel not containing seeds from every male producer and director in town. Each one silently watered by the tears of up and coming actresses.
And during these innocent times we needed an innocent heroine. Someone blonde, approachable, spunky, but not too spunky. Someone with the personality of a stick of Hubba Bubba. Sweet and bubbly, overall pleasant, but doesn’t taste like anything in particular. Something that everyone can enjoy. That person was Hilary Duff. In 2000, Hilary began shooting her TV show, Lizzie Mcguire.
During the filming of their Christmas episode, which subsequently didn’t air until March of 2001, a 13 year old Hillary met another blonde bombshell, Aaron Carter. In the episode, Hillary and her two brown haired sidekicks find out that Aaron Carter is coming to town to shoot a music video. They come up with a plan to sneak onto the lot where the video is being filmed so they meet Aaron. Low stakes madness ensues, and they finally find themselves in Aaron’s dressing room. Aaron’s manager catches them in the act. They’re about to be thrown out when Lizzie convinces the manager to let one of them meet Aaron. And only one. Of course it is completely unbelievable that any Hollywood manager would allow one pretty girl to meet their client but not two pretty girls.
But this is the made up world they live in. There’s also a make-shift prison on set where they send people if they eat the craft service table donuts without permission. Stealing crafty baked goods carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in the third floor broom closet on the Paramount lot.
Anyway, Lizzie Mcguire, ever the martyr, tells her friend Brown Haired Girl that she should be the one to meet Aaron because she’s a singer and it’s a good opportunity for her. Which, is one of the reasons why I never liked this show. The overall message seemed to be put your friends above yourself. There’s one episode I vaguely remember where Lizzie is discovered and starts modeling. Despite being five foot two, she becomes very successful, because in this world anything can happen. But then the two brown hair’ds get pissy because she can’t spend as much time with them as she used to. So she just up and quits modeling!
Lizzie wasn’t teaching kids to be loyal friends, she was teaching kids to be suckers. Disney should have been teaching young girls that if some 7th grade pedestrian named Gordo isn’t happy for your success and instead whines about how you’re not giving him enough of your time, you tell him kiss off and schedule a playdate with a Hadid sister.
So the meeting between Lizzie’s friend Miranda and Aaron happens off camera. She leaves his dressing room and tells Lizzie and Gordo that she sang for him and Aaron said she was really good. It will take another 15 years before Miranda also tells them that he promised to get her a meeting with his record label if she’d just maintains direct eye contact with him for the next 5 minutes while he masturbates to his song “How I Beat Shaq.”
Gordo couldnt give a shit because he’s very straight and maintains throughout the episode that he definitely doesn’t care about meeting this boy celebrity because only girls like boy celebrities. Lizzie is happy for her friend, but despite her pure heart, there is still a tinge of jealousy. But alas, Lizzie’s good deed is rewarded when Aaron opens the door to his dressing room, saying Miranda forgot her sweater when she ran out in sheer panic.
Lizzie has her chance, and walks up to his door to retrieve it. As she takes the sweater, Aaron glances up at the mistletoe. And as we know, wandering underneath mistletoe is legally considered implied consent for kissing and over the ugly christmas sweater fondling. Without saying a word, Aaron plants one on Lizzie and then closes the door in her face. She loved it!
The episode closes on 4 full minutes of Aaron singing “I Want Candy” on a soundstage while the cast members dance around themselves. Five stars.
Apparently, that staged kiss made a big impression on both Aaron and Hilary. After that, the two began dating. Things were going swimmingly until 2002. As Aaron put it in a 2006 interview:
“We kissed and we hugged and we’d hold hands and go to the movies.”
Just the sweet innocent things that 13 and 14 year olds like to do together. But after a year and a half of this, Aaron started to get bored. Aaron developed a wandering eye. It wandered all the way to Lindsay Lohan. The Big Red to Hillary’s Hubba Bubba.
Aaron dumped Hillary for Lindsay, and the two dated for a few months. Who knows what those two were up to. Probably snorting Lindsay’s ritalin prescription and groping each other in a handicapped bathroom stall during the Tuck Everlasting premiere. But Aaron eventually got his fill of the bad girl lifestyle, and came crawling back to Hillary. Hillary, for some reason, took him back even though by this time he was barely a thing anymore and had a gross goatee situation on his face. It didn’t last long though, because after a few months, Aaron cheated on Hillary with her best friend.
Things were over and done with Hillary and Aaron. And at 17, Lindsay allegedly begins dating a 24 year old Wilmer Valderama, though they don’t go public with it til she was 18. Sidebar: Valderama? I don’t like ‘em. Not one bit. Him and that wannabe Pussy Posse he cavorted around town with. I’d love to know what they were up to circa 2006. Danny Masterson has already been outed as a rapist. And if he doesn’t end up in jail, I have full faith in our lord and savior Leah Remini to take matters into her own finely manicured talons. For Mila’s sake, I hope Ashton was too busy taking classes at the Kaballah centre with Demi and Lisa Rinna to get himself into any trouble. Furthermore, when are we going to start hearing about what the actual Pussy Posse members were really up to. They called themselves the Pussy Posse for god’s sake. They were not feline enthusiasts.
So, Despite the fact that Aaron isn’t much of a factor for either of them at this point, there’s still a lot of bad blood between them and their feud only now starts to heat up.
In April 2003, Hillary shows up to the red carpet of Lindsay’s premiere for Freaky Friday. Then in December, Lindsay walks the red carpet for Hillary’s premiere of Cheaper by the Dozen. Though, can you really say it’s Hilary’s premiere when she’s one of 12 costarring children? I think we can safely say this was Bonnie Hunt’s premiere of cheaper by the dozen. Regardless, this was retaliation on Lindsay’s part. Some reports even say that Hilary had Lindsay thrown out of the premiere.
In 2003, Lindsay shoots Mean Girls, the movie that will officially set her starmeter to a level much higher than Hilary’s. Tina Fey later said in an interview that, “I remember 17-year-old Lindsay was on a mission to find pink Uggs. That was, like, what she was working on,” the comedienne told EW. “And there was one day where she tried to explain to Amy [Poehler] and me her beef with Hilary Duff, but we couldn’t crack it. But we were pretending we could follow it.”
By 2004, Hillary starts filming a Cinderella Story with Chad Michael Murray who played Lindsay’s love interest in Freaky Friday. Lindsay allegedly got Chad on the horn to speak ill of her and spread untruths. Around this time Lindsay filmed MTV’s Diary of Lindsay Lohan. In it, she goes to Mexico to make appearances on MTV’s Spring Break specials. She has some fun and plays a game where she and Matthew Perry have to autograph half naked co-eds. Then she and a girlfriend run frantically around Mexico lost on the way to a restaurant, expecting Mexican cab drivers who are in their home country of Mexico to speak English to her. During Lindsay and company’s amazing race level escapade, someone shouts: .
Later, Lindsay might have started to feel as though she was coming off as a mean girl, says in a TRL appearance that she loves Hilary Duff. Which is a bit much. Then she completely undoes any sort of progress when in May 2004, she hosts an episode of Saturday Night Live where Rachel Dratch does an impression of Hilary during Lindsay’s monologue.
Hilary doesn’t take it too well. [Video Clip]
She’s sort of a baby about it. She strikes back by banning her from the Cinderella Story premiere in July. It seems like it’s all really getting to a tender Hillary who tells Blender Magazine:
“The thing is, it’s all so childish and immature,” Duff said of their beef. “This all started because we both dated Aaron Carter, and she went around telling everybody that I was a horrible person who had stolen her boyfriend. She then got pissed off because I worked with Chad Michael Murray [on ‘Cinderella’] after she had worked with him on ‘Freaky Friday.’ She called him up and said all these awful things about me, which she then repeated to the press. I don’t think I can take it anymore. It’s so hurtful. Sometimes I feel like I really hate her, which is pretty extreme for me, because I don’t hate anybody.”
Duff continued, “She’s always trying to spread stories about me, but the funny thing is, I know so many stories about her that I could tell you right now, but I’m not going to, because I don’t think people should know. I don’t want her to get mad at me for telling them. And you know what the funny thing is in all this? I just want us to be friends – that’s all.”
It does speak to how dysfunctional Lindsay is as a person that she could rewrite history to a point where she has no accountability in the feud. Hilary had been with Aaron first. They had been in a year and a half long relationship before Aaron started dating Lindsay. And because he went back to Hillary, Lindsay interprets it as Hillary stealing Aaron from her. Lindsay certainly lives in her own reality different from the rest of the world now. But it seems like it’s actually been that way for a long time.
Another thing I find interesting about Lindsay is her total inability to hold men accountable for things. On more than a few occasions Lindsay has come to the defense of bad men. Like her now deleted Instagram video about Harvey Weinstein:
Also, maybe she’s telling the truth and Harvey never did anything to her, but I honestly can’t imagine in all her years in the business nothing ever happened to her. She had zero supervision from her parents. It’s not for me to speculate, but I am speculating a little.
Anyway, instead of blaming Aaron for being a little weasel cheater and breaking both of their hearts, Lindsay, holds only Hillary accountable. I’m sure this stems back to her very serious mommy and daddy issues.
After Hilary’s 17th birthday, she releases her self-titled album in September which includes a song about Lindsay called “Haters.”
You tell em Hil! This is your fight song!
Hilary gets in her last jab, and then by 2005, the feud starts to simmer out. Lindsay no longer has the time for such feuds as she has moved on to the big leagues of Hollywood. Hilary versus Lindsay wasn’t a fair fight. She needed a worthy adversary, like Paris Hilton. If you haven’t heard it yet, check out the very first episode of Les Deux You Remember This? “The Feud of Lindsay and Paris.”
In 2007, everything seemed to be on the up and up with Lindsay and Hilary. “We are both adults, and whatever happened, happened when we were young,” Hilary told People. “It’s over.” Lindsay even attended the release of Hilary’s party or her album Dignity. “She’s really fun,” she said about Lindsay. “We were hanging out the other night, and she’s a nice girl.”
It all worked out. For everyone but Aaron’s Party. A party of 1. Throughout all these years Aaron, as most of you know, was on a rapid decline. He’d been in rehab, filed for bankruptcy, and then in 2014, went on something of a twitter rampage where he talked about his love for Hilary Duff.
“Don’t be that stupid douche that loses the love of your life forever.. Like me…I’ll spend the rest of my life trying to better myself to get back to her. I don’t care what ANY of you think.”
In an interview with Cosmopolitan, Hilary called his Twitter love confession ridiculous. Which it definitely was. It’s a little similar to the time that Lindsay took to Twitter and Instagram after a night of reminiscing over the good ole days. She wrote: “#nice girls @britney spears @parishilton come to #mykonos for my birthday this weekend smiley face Beyonce, you too.”
Which has me thinking, were Aaron and Lindsay meant for each other all along? They had similar terrible upbringings, they achieved fame early, they’ve both probably made out with Paris Hilton. They even share the same politics. In 2016, Aaron tweeted his support for donald trump. And just recently, Lindsay tweeted Donald Trump saying “@potus im in asia. Lets meet before you head to moscow #russia #putin.”
But how can you blame them? They’re just trying to make America 2003 again. Maybe if they got together, they could escape and live in that alternate reality, where a bright future was still laid out in front of them.
Or they’d just end up fueling each other’s worst impulses until their inevitable deaths… Yeah, they should probably just steer clear of one another.
Les Deux You Remember This? Is researched, written, narrated, and Edited by me Dara Laine. If you aren’t already, please subscribe on iTunes, and leave a rating and review. You can follow the pod on Instagram and iTunes. And please, if you like the podcast, share it, tell your friends! It’s true what they say: takes a village to make me famous. If you have any questions, comments, or show suggestions please email email@example.com.
In our next episode, I’ll be talking with comedian and podcaster Gabi Conti about the psychology of our favorite early aughts starlets.
So you’re invited to come back next week. We’ve got a table, and I’ve put you on the list, for Les Deux You Remember This?