Candid conversation

Meg Ryan opens up about why she drifted away from acting about 10 years ago

Meg Ryan arrives at American Film Institute's 45th Life Achievement Award Gala Tribute to Diane Keaton at Dolby Theatre on June 8, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

Gwyneth Paltrow hosted a wellness summit (it’s called “In Goop Health”) in Culver City, California, over the weekend and among the event’s featured guests was actress Meg Ryan. During a one-on-one conversation, Paltrow broached the subject of #MeToo and asked Ryan if she had ever experienced harassment during her career.

“I don’t have a big, bad story,” Ryan replied. “Success, which happened fairly early for me, is like an iron bubble around you. So I was really lucky.”

Meg Ryan and Gwyneth Paltrow speak onstage at the In goop Health Summit at 3Labs on June 9, 2018 in Culver City, California. (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for goop)

But success was a complicated beast for Ryan, whose winning turns in films like Sleeping in Seattle saw her dubbed “America’s sweetheart.”

“When you get labeled anything, like ‘America’s Sweetheart’ — I didn’t even know what that meant,” Ryan said. “It doesn’t necessarily imply that you’re smart or sexual or complicated or anything. It’s a label. And what can a label do but guess at you?”

Ryan also revealed that the pressures of being in the public eye, albeit one that adored her, prompted her to retreat from acting around 10 years ago.

“You know, I never wanted to be an actress,” she said. “The whole idea of being a famous person, the whole thing, I felt like a witness to. I didn’t feel exactly in it. And I think that was a really good thing. Because I felt like a student of it in a way, that I was watching it [unfold] in an anthropological way.”

Below, watch a clip from the conversation between Paltrow and Ryan.

Read the full story at Deadline.

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