Shailene Woodley: I Almost Quit Acting
Shailene Woodley opens up to Vanity Fair about her male co-stars, getting cut from The Amazing Spider-Man 2, and defying expectations in a new cover interview.
The Fault In Our Stars actress reveals that she nearly quit show business after getting acclaim for The Descendants.
“Somebody came to me and said, ‘I can’t wait to see what you do next.’ I took that as pressure — that I had to live up to somebody else’s expectations,” says Woodley. “There were a few months where I was like, ‘I don’t want to act anymore.’ And then I got over it and realized it’s none of my business what other people think of me.”
She continued acting, and also gained a reputation as a public figure who cared about issues — although she explains that small-scale kindness can be as important as large-scale change.
“As much as this industry is a platform for talking about big issues, there’s also so many f*ckin’ issues. You could talk about Russia, or Argentina, or fracking, or G.M.O.’s,” explains Woodley.
The star says, “Maybe the only thing that I’m supposed to do is just show up and be me in every moment. Because I do feel like one of my gifts is to be open and lovely — simple things like smiling at strangers and having kind, small interactions. I think that is what’s going to ultimately shift things.”
Woodley lived in the moment when her role was axed from Spider-Man.
“For a few hours it was literally like, ‘Oh, my God, was I awful? Why did they cut me? What are people going to think?’” recalls the actress. “I woke up the next morning and I was like, ‘O.K., it makes total sense.’ I’m a pretty spiritual person, so I can just sit back and trust that everything happens for a reason, even if my ego doesn’t like it.”
She says she’s hesitant to date a fellow actor, but doesn’t rule it out.
Woodley tells the magazine, “I’m never going to say never. I love acting, but I also really love nature and most actors don’t want to get dirty.”
Miles Teller, her co-star in The Spectacular Now and Divergent, is someone with whom she feels a bond — even if it’s not romantic.
“I look at Miles and, like, I’m sort of Julia Roberts in the same way she is to George. Their relationship I could see being our relationship in 20 years, and that really is special,” explains Woodley.
The “George” is George Clooney, a mentor from The Descendants whom Woodley adores.
“He has been an angel in my life for many reasons,” she says. “He knew everyone’s name on set. He treated everyone as an equal and everyone got his warmth.”
Clooney was definitely impressed by Woodley, too.
He tells Vanity Fair, “Shailene can do whatever she wants. If she wants to be a movie star, she has it. If she wants to change the world, she will. Her talent and kindness go hand in hand.”
“We’ll be talking about Shailene Woodley 40 years from now,” predicts Clooney. “I’ve never seen anyone so young that has so much together.”
What do you think of the Vanity Fair interview?
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