The life of a child actor has long been a source of joy and pain for many young stars. Over the years, both Hollywood and the general public watched as a variety of one time child sweethearts like Drew Barrymore, Macaulay Culkin and Lindsay Lohan faced career threatening battles with drugs, alcohol and ongoing legal issues. In some cases those involved managed to salvage their lives if not their careers, but the cost of fame at a young age definitely has its risks.
At age 19, actress Chloë Grace Moretz is already well aware of the rollercoaster ride that is life in Hollywood. With 55 films to her credit to date, the star of both Kick-Ass films, Let Me In and the multi-Oscar winning Hugo has accomplished more than many actors ever do. But sustaining a career from childhood through adulthood in one of the most competitive and money-driven industries in the world is so fraught with difficulties that few young actors ever manage it.
One of the first methods for maintaining one’s career under these circumstances is to scale back the amount of work taken on. As is now being reported by THR, this is the approach that Moretz is in the process of taking. The teen star experienced what she called “a ‘Come to Jesus’ moment” and has now dropped out of all future film projects, which included the upcoming live-action remake of The Little Mermaid. It’s a bold step for any actor to take, but Moretz is convinced that it’s time to “find herself” once more in her work:
“…I pulled the plug on all my movies because I want to reassess who I am and find myself within my roles again. I’m realizing that I can slow down.”
Rather than focus on acting, Moretz will, for the time being, put more energy into producing, most notably with two different television series’ that she’s getting set to shop around. Aside from show business, Moretz is also interested in public speaking and intends to continue her efforts at publicizing the issues of body positivity for girls, bringing arts back into the U.S. education system and perhaps most ambitious of all, joining the campaign trail for presidential nominee Hillary Clinton in the run up to November’s U.S. election.
While news of Moretz’s decision to step back from acting in films might not please her legions of devoted fans, the truth of the matter is that this is very likely a step in the right direction for the 19-year-old. Hollywood can and does take its toll not just on an actor’s private life, but also on their ability to make sound career choices. Shia LaBeouf is one example of a former child star/box-office obsessed actor who is now making strides to act only because roles directly resonate with him. Finding that sense of purpose in the craft is vital for any actor hoping to work long term and be proud of what they do – box-office hit or not.
It is surprising to see Moretz make this decision at this stage in her career. However, the responsibility and foresight required to choose to slow down illustrates Moretz’s desire to do what’s best for her. Such consideration for her work and herself can very well have far reaching effects on the actress she becomes in her career. Hopefully, this will translate to film roles that both Moretz herself and fans alike are delighted with.