Cher opens up about her 3-day catapult to fame: ‘Adults hated us’

She shot to fame at 19, the beginning of an incredible story involving topping the charts, touring the world, getting her own television show and headlining a Las Vegas residency. But more than 50 years later, Cher is opening up about the haters she encountered during her rapid ascent to success.

The songstress sold millions of records with her former husband, Sonny Bono, with whom she formed the duo, Sonny & Cher, and released the classic hit, “I Got You, Babe." In a new interview with Elle for the magazine’s December issue, she detailed the day Bono caught her attention and the incredible rise they experienced together.

“I swear, it was like the Maria and Tony scene,” she said of the moment she met Bono, referencing the famous balcony sequence in Westside Story. “Everyone just disappeared. He was the most unusual person I’d ever seen. He had longish hair, and he had the most beautiful suit on, and beautiful long fingers, and Beatle boots, but they were Cuban heels.”

The two eventually tied the knot -- married from 1969 to 1975 -- and worked together substantially, but when it came to their breakout hit, “I Got You Babe,” Cher recalled backlash.

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HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 12: Singer Cher attends the premiere of Open Road Films' 'The Promise' on April 12, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by JB Lacroix/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 12: Kourtney Kardashian, Kim Kardashian and Cher arrive at the Los Angeles Premiere 'The Promise' at TCL Chinese Theatre on April 12, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES - FEBRUARY 27: 'The Talk' celebrates icon, Cher for a special one-hour episode with the pop icon on 'The Talk,' Tuesday, February 28, 2017 on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - FEBRUARY 27: 'The Talk' celebrates Cher for a special one-hour episode with the pop icon on 'The Talk,' Tuesday, February 28, 2017 on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 21: Madonna (L) and Cher attend the rally at the Women's March on Washington on January 21, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 21: Cher attends the rally at the Women's March on Washington on January 21, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 08: Cher leaves Javits Center on November 8, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Natasha Moustache/WireImage)
MIAMI, FL - NOVEMBER 07: Cher campaigns for Hillary Clinton on November 7, 2016 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 02: Singer and Actress Cher speaks onstage at the Fast Company Innovation Festival 2016 - Cher & Doreen Lorenzo at Skirball Center, NYU on November 2, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Fast Company)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 02: Singer and Actress Cher attends the Fast Company Innovation Festival 2016 - Cher & Doreen Lorenzo at Skirball Center, NYU on November 2, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Fast Company)
PROVINCETOWN, MA - AUGUST 21: Performer Cher arrives for a fundraiser for U.S. Presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton in Provincetown, Mass., Aug. 21, 2016. (Photo by Keith Bedford/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - MAY 03: Singer Cher speaks onstage during 2016 Milken Institute Global Conference at The Beverly Hilton on May 03, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 23: Cher is seen at LAX on August 23, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by GVK/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 12: Cher is seen at LAX on July 12, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by GVK/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 23: Cher is seen at LAX. on June 23, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by GVK/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
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“They didn’t resonate at first. Kids liked it, but adults just hated us," she said. "I mean, really hated us. Fistfights hate.’”

Regardless of haters, they climbed the charts and before long, were experiencing virtually overnight success. The sudden notoriety was highlighted during a trip to London after the track came out in 1965

“It sounds so dumb, but everything happened so fast," Cher said "I didn’t even know where I was. One day we were poor. Two days, three days later, we were famous."

During the interview, the GRAMMY, Emmy and Oscar winning star also recalled nearly being run over by Warren Beatty, before she started dating him.

Reflecting on her ups and downs, which are chronicled in her new Broadway musical, The Cher Show, she admitted having “huge failures” and “huge dips.”

But even when being frequently told that she was “over,” she refused to believe it.

“I’ve had huge failures in my life. Huge dips and ‘Oh, you’re over. You’re over,’” she said. “This one guy once said, ‘You’re over,’ every year for I don’t know how many years. And I just said to him, ‘You know what? I will be here when you’re not doing what you do anymore.’ I had no idea if I was right or wrong. I was just tired of hearing him say it.”

As part of the feature, Elle also spoke to Meryl Streep, who waxed lyrical about Cher’s performance in the 1987 film, Moonstruck. (Streep was nominated for Best Actress for her role in Ironweed at the 1987 Oscars, but ended up losing to Cher.)

Moonstruck was when she showed how completely effortless her fully rounded talent was -- funny, heartbreaking, inimitable -- no one else could’ve done it that way,” Streep said. “She owned that part. She jumped out of the screen. It was like we’d been waiting for her, and round the corner, she came: ‘Yeah, and I can do this, too!’"

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