Cameron Diaz reflects on decision to walk away from Hollywood

Cameron Diaz has opened up on her decision to retire from Hollywood, saying the move brought her “peace” after years of intense scrutiny in the public eye.

The actress was one of the industry’s most bankable stars, known for films including There’s Something About Mary, Charlie’s Angels and The Holiday.

Diaz’s last movie was the 2014 adaptation of Annie. The 47-year-old spoke to Gwyneth Paltrow for the latest episode of the In Goop Health: The Sessions series and reflected on her decision to step back from Hollywood.

“What did it feel like to walk away from a movie career of that magnitude?” Paltrow asked Diaz.

The Graham Norton Show – London
Cameron Diaz has reflected on her decision to retire from Hollywood (Jonathan Brady/PA)

The Shrek star, smiling, replied: “A peace. I got a peace in my soul, because I finally was taking care of myself.”

Diaz added: “It’s a strange thing to say, I know a lot of people won’t understand it, I know you understand it, but it’s so intense to work at that level and be that public and put yourself out there.

“There’s a lot of energy coming at you at all times when you’re really visible as an actor and doing press and putting yourself out there.”

Diaz, who made her film debut as a 21-year-old opposite Jim Carrey in 1994 comedy The Mask, described her intense schedule as a “grind” and said it meant she was unable to make any time for her personal life.

The pressure of being responsible for multi-million dollar films could be “overwhelming” Diaz said, and she wanted to become self-sufficient after years of having even basic tasks done for her on set.

“I stopped and really looked at my life,” she said. “When you’re making a movie, they own you. You’re there for 12 hours a day for months on end, you have no time for anything else.”

Diaz has been married to Good Charlotte rocker Benji Madden, 41, since 2015. The couple welcomed their first child, a daughter named Raddix, in December.

“We got married pretty much immediately because we realised we just had to do it,” Diaz told Paltrow.

“We went hard for a few years where we just ironed it out, hacked it out. It was a lot of work, but we had to.”

She added: “I’m older than him, not a lot older, but he was at the place in his life where he also wanted to do that as well.”

Diaz confirmed her retirement from acting in 2018. However, speaking in April, she did not rule out a return and said: “I’m never gonna say never, because I’m not a person who says never about anything.”