Drew Barrymore Slams Razzies for Nominating Firestarter Lead Ryan Kiera Armstrong

It’s not the first time the Razzies has nominated young actors and actresses for its annual awards to celebrate the “Worst” in cinema, but it is the first time the group has faced such a backlash.

The Razzies have already apologized for their nomination of 12-year-old “Firestarter” lead Ryan Kiera Armstrong, and withdrawn her from the running as “Worst Actress,” but Drew Barrymore still had something to say about it.

As the star of the first “Firestarter” adaptation, which she led at the age of nine back in 1984, Barrymore feels an affinity with Armstrong’s performance and the project.

She also just feels it’s unnecessary to target young artists. “This makes my blood boil,” she said on her eponymous talk show. “Please don’t do this to people who are younger. That’s not nice.”

Barrymore clarified that she doesn’t have a problem with the Razzies or the concept of poking fun at the industry, which she says is “fair game, bring it on,” but she draws the line at kids.

She also noted that this isn’t the first time the Razzies have nominated kids — both Gary Coleman in the 1980s and Macaulay Culkin and Jake Lloyd in the ’90s have garnered noms. The first Razzies were announced in 1981.

She said that the group “didn’t get caught” then, but the advent of social media has changed things. “This time they did,” she said.

“But now it’s sort of another way to publicly allow others to shame them and ridicule them with platforms that maybe they couldn’t have anticipated back in the day,” she argued. “But now they know.”

After removing Armstrong’s name from this year’s ballot, the Golden Raspberry Awards (or Razzies) co-founder John Wilson stated that performers under the age of 18 years old will be ineligible for nominations moving forward.

In an interview with Buzzfeed, Wilson said that their “intent” was “to be funny,” but obviously that’s not how it played out. “In this particular instance, we seem to have misstepped very badly. I would admit that.”

Wilson said that Armstrong came in fifth in the voting, among approximately 1,100 votes, and there was some initial debate about including her on the ballot.

She was nominated alongside Bryce Dallas Howard (‘Jurassic Park: Dominion’), Diane Keaton (‘Mack & Rita’), Kaya Scodelario (‘The King’s Daughter’) and Alicia Silverstone (‘The Requin’).

“I think people who get upset about — I don’t even know how to say this — the rage is interesting,” added Wilson. “Perhaps somewhat justified, but I think overblown.”

“There’s a righteousness about it,” he continued. “It’s the Razzie Awards, for goodness’ sake!”

The 43rd Golden Raspberry Awards will be handed out on March 11, one day ahead of this year’s Oscars ceremony.

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