Sally Field: 'Depression almost cost me my career'
The star credits acting lessons with helping her cope with low self-esteem.
Actress Sally Field almost called it quits on Hollywood while suffering from severe depression in her teens.
The iconic 70-year-old screen star began her career in the mid-1960s playing lovable teenager Gidget on the TV series of the same name and from 1967 to 1970 she played Sister Bertrille in American situation comedy The Flying Nun.
But portraying goofy characters on television was not fulfilling for the star in the slightest and off-screen she was “deeply depressed”.
“It took me a long time to get to anybody to really learn a craft and that wasn’t until I was in my second television series, and unfortunately it was something called The Flying Nun,” she recalls during a joint interview with Hailee Steinfeld on a forthcoming episode of Variety's U.S. TV chat show Actors on Actors. “I was suffering so badly, I was so depressed and I was 19 and I didn’t want to be playing something called the Flying Nun, I did not want to be dressed as a nun all day long.”
Field recalls at her lowest point she gained 10lbs in two days and felt ugly both inside and out.
However, when she finally started honing her craft by taking classes at the actor's studio, her depression slowly dissolved.
“(The actor’s studio) really began to form who I was not only as an actor, but helped me be who I became as a person,” Sally shares. “Because it gave me tools … so that I never lose my own voice … acting tools, that I can go into myself and if I can call on those pieces of myself as an actor, then I can call on them as a human, and I couldn’t do that before.”
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