After facing an alleged recent rash of online bullying, actress Mary-Louise Parker, 48, announced this week that she is considering permanently leaving the entertainment industry. The longtime lead of the Showtime series "Weeds" and star of the recent film "Red 2" claims it was a barrage of negative comments and criticism from Internet users that led her to the decision.
“I’m not really into it anymore… I’m almost done acting, I think,” Parker told AU News in Australia, saying she is tired of reading “hatred” directed toward her online. “It's sport for some people; it's fun to get on at night and unleash their own self-loathing by attacking someone else who they think has a happier life ... And there's more of that than there is whatever praise people think you're getting,” she said.
The actress also cited a desire to spend more time with her children, William, 9, and Caroline, 6. While Parker’s potential departure from the industry is unexpected, she isn’t the only star to threaten to do so. Here are six other celebrities who also threatened to quit the entertainment business:
Longtime actor and former “30 Rock” star Alec Baldwin isn’t shy about publicly sharing his thoughts and emotions. Prior to a recent tirade in which he bashed a reporter for claiming his wife was tweeting during James Gandolfini’s funeral, the 55-year-old actor said he would “love” to quit the business in order to give his children normal lives.
“I have one dream in my life, and that is that this daughter I’m having — she comes to me about seven or eight years from now… and she says, 'Daddy, Susie’s mom says you used to be on TV. Daddy, is that true?' She has no knowledge of me as a public person,” he told Vanity Fair earlier this month. “That would be heaven for me.”
Long before her recent stint of Twitter rants, multiple plastic surgeries and arrest, Amanda Bynes, 27, revealed her desire to quit acting on social media in 2010. “"I know 24 is a young age to retire, but you heard it here first: I've #retired," tweeted Bynes. The longtime actress, best-known for her childhood roles in “All That” and “The Amanda Show” on Nickelodeon, followed her announcement with a retraction a few shorts days later saying she was officially “unretired.”
Fans of “The Notebook” star Ryan Gosling were in an uproar after the 32-year-old actor announced a hiatus from the entertainment business in March. “I've lost perspective on what I'm doing," Gosling told the Associated Press. "I think it's good for me to take a break and reassess why I'm doing it and how I'm doing it. And I think this is probably a good way to learn about that. I need a break from myself as much as I imagine the audience does.” Luckily for fans, Gosling is slated to star in an untitled Terrence Malick film project alongside Christian Bale and Natalie Portman in 2014.
Despite the drama series “Gossip Girl” being her ticket to fame, actress Leighton Meester claims the popular CW program almost made her leave the industry. The 27-year-old star revealed to Britain’s Company magazine that her contract with “Gossip Girl” almost caused her to miss out on what she considered the role of a lifetime in the film “Country Strong.” “I threatened everybody in my life, including my manager, my agent and everybody that I worked with. I was like, 'If I can't do this, if we can't work out the schedule, I'm moving to Costa Rica,” she said. “I'm never going to work again. I'm turning off my phone!” she said. “I was bluffing, of course, but it worked."
After playing book-smart muggle Hermione Granger in all eight Harry Potter films, actress Emma Watson said she struggled with the decision of whether to stay in the acting field. “I basically took two years out and stepped as far away from it as I could,” Watson told Total Film magazine. “I took time to really try and figure out who I was and what I wanted to do. I even considered not being an actress,” she said. While the 23-year-old is still making films, most recently starring in Sofia Coppola’s semi-biographical flick “The Bling Ring,” she is also in-between semesters at Brown University in Rhode Island.