There are many elements that go into the making of a superstar, and with a talent like Mariah Carey’s, some special handling is often needed. In the case of Tommy Mottola, the former Sony Music Entertainment executive  who mentored the current “American Idol” judge as she rose up the charts, that included marrying her.

Their five-year union was rocky, and she’s since been quoted as calling him “controlling” and “a Svengali.” But Mottola, who joined TODAY’s Matt Lauer Tuesday to discuss his new book “Hitmaker: The Man and His Music,” was not exactly apologetic about his behavior, because it got results.

“I think anybody that’s successful becomes obsessive about what they’re trying to succeed at,” he said. “I have nothing but the greatest respect for her in the world…. I feel great about all the things she’s achieved as a result of all the work that we did.”

That said, he does regret getting personally involved with Carey, who at 23 was 20 years his junior when they wed. “You can never control sometimes what happens in your personal life, as we all know,” he said. “The good thing that came out of all of this is that she became one of the most successful superstars in the world.”

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