Jennifer Lawrence on Why She Vanished from the Spotlight for Two Years: 'I'd Gotten Sick of Me'

"I was not pumping out the quality that I should have," the actress said

Jennifer Lawrence
Photo: Neilson Barnard/Getty

Jennifer Lawrence is speaking candidly about her decision to take a step back from life in the public eye.

While gracing the cover of Vanity Fair's December issue — which hits newsstands on Nov. 30 — the 31-year-old actress opened up about her role as a movie star and how it was important for her to remove herself from the spotlight for some time.

"I was not pumping out the quality that I should have," she explained to the outlet. "I just think everybody had gotten sick of me. I'd gotten sick of me. It had just gotten to a point where I couldn't do anything right."

"If I walked a red carpet, it was, 'Why didn't she run?'" she continued, then noting, "… I think that I was people-pleasing for the majority of my life."

"Working made me feel like nobody could be mad at me: 'Okay, I said yes, we're doing it. Nobody's mad.' And then I felt like I reached a point where people were not pleased just by my existence," Lawrence added. "So that kind of shook me out of thinking that work or your career can bring any kind of peace to your soul."

jennifer lawrence for vanity fair
Lachlan Bailey/Vanity Fair

Following some time away from acting (her last film was 2019's X-Men: Dark Phoenix), Lawrence will soon be seen in Adam McKay's end-of-the-world comedy Don't Look Up. Alongside Lawrence, the film features a star-studded cast composed of Leonardo DiCaprio, Meryl Streep and Jonah Hill, among many others.

Lawrence is also set to welcome a baby — her first child — sometime next year with husband Cooke Maroney. A film source close to the actress previously told PEOPLE that Lawrence is "looking forward" to becoming a new parent.

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jennifer lawrence
Lachlan Bailey/Vanity Fair

In her Vanity Fair interview, the Hunger Games star reiterated that while she's "grateful and excited" to become a mom, she wants to keep her child out of the conversation.

"If I was at a dinner party, and somebody was like, 'Oh, my God, you're expecting a baby,' I wouldn't be like, 'God, I can't talk about that. Get away from me, you psycho!'" she said. "But every instinct in my body wants to protect their privacy for the rest of their lives, as much as I can."

"I don't want anyone to feel welcome into their existence," Lawrence added. "And I feel like that just starts with not including them in this part of my work."

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