Despite the moderate success of the single, the album only peaked at No. 37 on the Billboard 200 chart and remained on the chart for just three weeks. The album’s second single, “Can I Go Now,” failed to make a mark in the US charts but performed well in Australia, where it reached No. 12, and in the Netherlands, where it peaked at No. 8.
Despite its mixed commercial success, “BareNaked” remains an important milestone in Jennifer Love Hewitt’s discography and has received positive reviews for its pop and acoustic sound. “BareNaked” was later featured in two episodes of the TV series “Ghost Whisperer.”
Working With Jackie Chan
Hewitt starred alongside Jackie Chan in the action comedy "The Tuxedo" (2002) as a genius scientist eager to take part in fieldwork. The reviews didn’t mince words. One critic even called her character “repellent.” He had expected going into the film that she would be a fun sidekick to Chan’s character. Instead, audiences got someone who was a high-strung “shrew” (misogynistic much?).
Others criticized her for not being a strong enough female character, reducing her to a "damsel in distress" stereotype. Hewitt remained proud of her performance and the opportunity to work alongside a legend like Jackie Chan. The movie grossed an impressive $104.4 million globally despite what critics had to say.
The Release of “BareNaked”
In 2002, Hewitt joined forces with producer Meredith Brooks and signed with Jive Records to record her fourth studio album, “BareNaked.” The album's title track, "BareNaked," became her most successful radio hit to date, reaching No. 24 on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 chart, No. 31 on the Adult Top 40, and No. 25 on the Top 40 Mainstream.
The song was personal, describing her return to the music industry after facing setbacks in the early '90s. Hewitt wrote the lyrics on every track in the album, while the music was composed by Brooks, known for her hit "B*tch" in 1997. “BareNaked” climbed to No. 6 in Australia and held that position for two weeks, and in the Netherlands, where it reached No. 33.
From Live-Action Roles to Animated Films
Apart from her on-screen roles, Hewitt expanded her repertoire by lending her voice to two direct-to-DVD animated films in 2002: “The Hunchback of Notre Dame II” and “The Adventures of Tom Thumb and Thumbelina.”
In 2004, Hewitt had three other notable roles: she played a musician in the romantic fantasy drama “If Only,” portrayed the love interest of Ebenezer Scrooge in the television film “A Christmas Carol,” and played Dr. Liz Wilson in the live-action comedy “Garfield.” The latter film, based on the popular comic strip, grossed an impressive $200 million globally, making it Hewitt's most financially successful film to date.
She Deals With a Stalker
During the 2002 Grammy Awards, Diana Napolis, a former social worker with a history of promoting conspiracy theories, caused a disturbance when she verbally confronted Hewitt. She also attempted to enter the premiere of “The Tuxedo” the next day, posing as a friend of Hewitt. Napolis was subsequently arrested and charged with stalking and uttering death threats against Hewitt and Steven Spielberg, who was also involved in the film.
These charges resulted in six felony charges against Napolis. After a year of involuntary commitment, Napolis pleaded guilty to the charges and was released on probation. As part of her probation, she was prohibited from having any contact with both Spielberg and Hewitt.