With Bridget Jones’s Baby, her first movie in six years, Renée Zellweger is back in the spotlight.
She had won an Oscar, earned two more nominations and won the hearts around the world in films such as Jerry Maguire, Bridget Jones’s Diary, and Chicago.
But several years ago, Renée Zellweger became more and more unhappy with her life as a movie star — and decided to step away from acting for a while.
“I can’t remember if there was one defining moment. I don’t think so. I think I was just taking inventory of my life,” Zellweger, 47, tells Jess Cagle, the Editorial Director of PEOPLE and Entertainment Weekly, in this week’s PEOPLE cover story.
To view the complete Jess Cagle Interview, watch People Cover Story: Renée Zellweger now at People/Entertainment Weekly Network. It’s free, and it’s available on streaming devices, including Apple TV, Roku, etc. Just download the PEN app on your Smart TV, mobile and Web devices, or you can check it out at people.com/PEN.
“Everything was about going from one professional obligation to the next. And that’s what I call them now, when they should have been exciting opportunities, creative opportunities or life adventures. Like laughing, driving to Sony, because Tom Cruise is there.”
Now back onscreen in Bridget Jones’s Baby, her first movie in six years, Zellweger spent time writing and learning to lead a happier, healthier life. In 2012, she also began dating guitarist/singer Doyle Bramhall II, a longtime friend from Texas, and they’ve been a couple ever since.
“When you have nothing to go home to, no one to celebrate these things with, it’s time to maybe reassess and figure out what you’re not doing right,” she says. “I had made so many promises to myself about things that I wanted to explore, things I wanted to try, and how I would like to grow as a person that I had made no time for. And I thought, ‘that’s enough.'”