Brie Larson has been making movies since childhood. But while she has dozens of roles under her belt, she says it wasn’t until last year that she felt like she truly came into her own as an actress.
“I knew I wanted to be an actor when I was 6 [years old]. I don’t really think I became an actor until last year,” Larson told the crowd at the Women In Film Pre-Oscar Cocktail Party in West Hollywood, California on Friday while co-hosting the event.
Last year, the 27-year-old won the Oscar for Best Actress for her role in the film Room.
“I’m probably one of the younger people in here, so I’m going to refrain from giving any sort of advice because I don’t know anything — I really don’t,” she said. “I’m sorry.”
Though Larson didn’t want to dispense advice, she did share her personal connection to film and how it’s helped her come into her own.
“I still feel on the cusp of being a woman and some time discovering what that means for me,” she told a room that included Oscar nominees Emma Stone, Viola Davis, Meryl Streep, Ava DuVernay and Viggo Mortensen — as well as actresses Gabrielle Union, Zoë Kravitz and Jenny Slate.
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“And even though being an actor was really hard, it was even harder to learn how to be a woman,” Larson added. “Because I love film so much, that’s where I turn to. That’s how I learned how to be who I am today. It was through the brave performances that went outside of clichés and showed you what the real world looked like.”
The actress, who’s new film Kong: Skull Island comes out in March, hasn’t been shy about her activism and told reporters on the red carpet what she thinks it will take to help shepherd more women into the industry.
“We just need more women to feel like they are deserving, that they’re allowed to be here, and have a seat at the table,” she said. “And I think that that’s what this event for me is about.”
The Academy Awards kicks off live on ABC on Sunday, Feb. 26, with a 7 p.m. ET pre-show and 8:30 p.m. ceremony. See all the Oscar nominees and get your own ballot here!