Rolling Out

Why Quvenzhané Wallis took a break from Hollywood

Quvenzhané Wallis takes a break from acting to return to normal life
Quvenzhané Wallis
Quvenzhané Wallis (Photo credit: Bang Media)

Quvenzhané Wallis took a break from Hollywood so she could have a “normal” life.

The 20-year-old star became the youngest-ever actress to be nominated for an Academy Award when she played the role of Hushpuppy in the 2012 drama film Beasts of the Southern Wild at just nine years old and continued working for some time but admitted that she can “barely remember” any of it as she explained why she took a step back for some time.

“I barely remember any of it, honestly, which is surprising to a lot of people. It’s very blurry. The most that I remember is being on set for Beasts and being outside and having fun with everyone.

“But I don’t remember meeting a lot of the people, I don’t really remember that whole period. I just remember traveling the world and meeting so many different people.

“It was really eye-opening to me as a kid because I had only been in Houma, Louisiana, and I got to see everything so fast and so quickly that it was like, ‘Oh [nodding and looking around], OK, alright…’

“I had that gap where I wasn’t really working and my self-esteem dropped and I wasn’t too sure of myself. and just talking to people since then has slowly rebuilt that. Jennifer told me, ‘Go for it, what’s the worst that can happen? Someone tells you no? You’ve already experienced that and you made it past that. Just go for it.

“That gap was really just me being ‘normal’ to the best extent that I could,” she told E! News.

The Breathe actress continued her Hollywood success with roles in 12 Years a Slave and Annie but was keen to experience things like high school while still auditioning for things in the traditional way before she took the leading role in the sitcom Swagger in 2021.

“I was in high school and playing sports and I was on the dance team, just living life. But I was still auditioning and that’s what made that gap the hardest thing for me, because I went back to being in a normal environment. No one treated me special, no one treated me like I was anyone…important,” she said.

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