Ever since she made her return to acting in 2016, fans have been over the moon about watching Renée Zellweger hit the big screen. As she gears up to make her debut as Judy Garland in the upcoming biopic Judy, Renée opened up about why she retreated from the acting world and even revealed that depression led up to her Hollywood hiatus in 2010.
“I wasn’t healthy. I wasn’t taking care of myself. I was the last thing on my list of priorities,” 50-year-old beauty candidly admitted to Vulture, adding that she was seeing a therapist for the first time in her life. “He recognized that I spent 99 percent of my life as the public persona and just a microscopic crumb of a fraction in my real life.”
With the help of the therapist, Renée was able to deal with her emotions while taking some well-deserved time off to regroup from the grueling acting industry. “I needed to not have something to do all the time, to not know what I’m going to be doing for the next two years in advance,” she explained. “I wanted to allow for some accidents. There had to be some quiet for the ideas to slip in.”
Going to therapy also helped the Bridget Jones’s Diary actress realize she was battling depression. “Nothing like international humiliation to set your perspective right!” Renée joked, giving one of her iconic laughs. “It clarifies what’s important to you. And it shakes off any sort of clingy superficiality … that you didn’t have time for anyway.”
During her hiatus, Renée stepped away from making movies, walking red carpets and doing major interviews. “One of the fears that maybe, as artists, we all share — because we have this public experience of being criticized not just for our work but as human beings — is when it gets to be too much, when you learn that your skin is not quite as thick as you need it to be, what is that gonna feel like?” she said. “Well, now I know. I got the hardest kick. And it ain’t the end.”
Although Renée kept out of the spotlight for over six years, the Chicago actress insisted that her rough patch only lasted about a year. “I had a good five-year period when I was joyful and in a new chapter that no one was even aware of,” she explained. Renée made her return to acting with 2016’s Bridget Jones’s Baby and we’ve been obsessed with watching what she does on the big screen ever since!
Want to see Renée play the iconic Wizard of Oz star? Be sure to catchJudy in theaters on September 27.