Both Selena Gomez and Demi Lovato have a lot in common, including the fact that they’ve enjoyed highly successful careers as actresses and singers, have been social media icons, and fodder for tabloids during their highest and (particularly) lowest moments. But even more than that, they saw their careers launched after they were cast in the later seasons of Barney & Friends, the famous show about the singing and dancing purple dinosaur.
Gomez and Lovato appeared on the show from 2002 to 2004, with the former’s character being Gianna and the latter’s Angela. The connection they made was immediate, as one of the show’s directors, Fred Holmes, pointed out in an interview, noting, “Early on you could just tell they clicked. Certain kids got along with other kids and they were just two of those that really clicked. They were pretty inseparable.”
Memories of Barney
As Gomez related to BBC Radio 1, both she and Lovato had a crush on the man in the Barney outfit. While he is unidentified, though it should be noted that it was not David Joyner, who now works as a tantra massage specialist and spiritual healer, those two little girls found him very sexy. “You have to be very fit to do that, because it’s 50 pounds of costumes,” she reflected. “So he’d take it off and he’d have his muscles and he’s sweating, and we’re, like, ‘Okay, we are children,’ but it was great.”
Not quite as enthusiastic about those days is Lovato, who, while appearing at the Cannes Lions festival in France, commented, “I wouldn’t start that young if I could do it over again. It was a difficult transition from child star to transform into a mainstream artist. You have to find your identity. For so long you’ve been molded and then you’re expected to figure out who you are in front of the whole world.”
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You couldn’t find a more diametrically opposed view of those same years than the one Gomez offers: “It was amazing to be 7 years old and experience that show. It was wild. I learned everything from that show. So it’s such a wonderful memory to me. A lot of people would be embarrassed to say they were on Barney, but I embrace the fact that I had such a wonderful time doing that show.”