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Money Monster: Julia Roberts, Jodie Foster talk importance of family in the Hollywood spotlight

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CARTER SMITH for EW

Julia Roberts, Jodie Foster, and George Clooney have spent the better part of their lives headlining some of the biggest movies of all time, and now, they’re teaming up for the Foster-directed Money Monster, which stars Clooney and Roberts as a financial TV host and his director and producer.

It’s hard to think of three celebs who have spent more time in the spotlight — so when the starry trio sat down with PEOPLE and EW editorial director Jess Cagle recently for EW’s Money Monster cover story, he asked them each what they do to maintain a sense of normalcy when they’re constantly in the public eye.

“It’s interesting that all three of us have been in the business for such a long time, and we’re all pretty well adjusted. Although George is a little crazy,” Foster says, laughing. “But we all have good lives, and we’re nice to people, and so far none of us is barking like a seal on Hollywood Boulevard. We’ve all had to find some adaptive tool to survive what is a kind of destructive psychological path: figuring out what does belong to the public and what doesn’t. We’ve all found little straws up to the surface of the water to figure out how we can breathe.”

For Roberts and Foster, one of those straws is their children, and they each cited their family as the thing that helps keep them grounded.

“I have a remarkable person who I share my life with, and he has a very clear set of principles of what life should be about,” Roberts says. “That creates the greatest balance for me — being able to focus on family life. For each of us, the measure of our work isn’t the measure of who we are. We have super-cool jobs, but we’re all going about our lives in the fashion that most people do: with integrity and kindness and, hopefully, a certain amount of privacy.”

Still, Roberts and Foster’s eagerness to keep their children out of the spotlight does have its downsides — at least if you ask Foster’s two sons, Charles and Kit.

“My older son is almost 18 now, and people will say to them, ‘Oh, you’ve spent your life on movie sets!’” Foster says. “They’re like, ‘Um, no. We’ve almost never been to a movie set.’ I’ve always compartmentalized my life. I’ve had my work life and I’ve had my family life, and that’s been my survival tool, really. But now, at 18, my son’s interested in acting, and he’s like, ‘How come you never brought me?’”

To continue reading more on Money Monster, pick up the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, on newsstands Friday, or buy it here – and subscribe now for more exclusive interviews and photos, only in EW.