Gwyneth Paltrow was only 26 when she realized she didn't "love acting that much"

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Gwyneth Paltrow knew she wouldn't want to act forever when she was just 26.

In a new interview on SiriusXM’s Quarantined with Bruce, the Oscar winner, 45, says she was in her mid-twenties, fresh off an Oscar win for Shakespeare in Love, when she realized she didn't "love acting that much as it turns out."

"I sort of felt like, well, now who am I supposed to be?" she added. "Like, what am I, what am I driving towards?"

Paltrow explained that "part of the the shine of acting wore off" due to the "intense public scrutiny" of being a young actress in Hollywood.

"Being a kid who's like living every breakup on every headline, like being criticized for everything you do say and wear," Paltrow continued. "And also, it's so transitory, you're always all over. It's hard to plant roots. Like I'm such a homebody, you know me, I like to be with my old friends and cook and squeeze my kids. Like I don't want to be alone in a hotel room in Budapest for six weeks. Like, it's just not who I am."

She also went on to talk about the toll that Harvey Weinstein had on her. He was her boss as the president of Miramax for several years, including when she won the Best Actress Oscar in 1999 for Shakespeare in Love. They also previously worked together on her breakout 1996 film, Emma.

Gwyneth Paltrow cries as she receives the Oscar for Best Actress for her role in "Shakespeare in Love"
Credit: Timothy A. Clary/Getty

"If you compound those things with the fact that like, you know, to be totally candid, I had a really rough boss for most of my movie career at Miramax," she said of the disgraced mogul, who she has accused of sexual harassment. "Like, so you take all those things [and] you're like, ‘I don't know if this is really my calling.’ "

Film and Television
Gwyneth Paltrow as Viola in Shakespeare in Love
| Credit: Moviestore/REX/Shutterstock

Paltrow's public relationships included Brad Pitt, Ben Affleck and Coldplay frontman Chris Martin. Paltrow dated Pitt from 1994 to 1997 and was engaged to the star before they split. She then dated Affleck from 1997 to late 2000, including during the time of her Oscar win.

The actress then met and married Martin, with whom she shares daughter Apple, 16, and son Moses, 14. The two split in 2014 and Paltrow later married producer Brad Falchuck in 2018.

Paltrow has been open about losing her love for acting in recent years. Earlier this year, she told Harper's Bazaar that she'll "literally never—nev-er" catch the acting bug again.

“When I was acting I really burned myself out," she explained. "When the flywheel kicked in, I was doing three to five movies a year. I really got to the point where even the little things, like sitting in the van going to set, getting your makeup touch-ups, and everything—I really don’t know that I can bear it.”

She continued by explaining that the breaking point came when she had her first child with Martin.

“The last movie I starred in, I was pregnant with my daughter,” she recalled. “It was a movie called Proof, an adaptation of a play I did in London, and I was like, ‘I’ve had it. I can’t do this anymore.’ I had morning sickness and I was dying, and I had these five-page monologues. So when I had her, I knew I was going to take a big chunk of time off. And I’ve never starred in anything again.”

Paltrow has since appeared in smaller roles in a few movies, mostly in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Iron Man's love interest Pepper Potts.