In the early 2000s, no other star graced as many magazine covers and made as many teenage girls swoon like Josh Hartnett. After landing major roles in hit movies like The Faculty and Pearl Harbor, Hollywood pegged him as the “next big thing.” But somewhere down the line while the industry was busy grooming him into being the next Leonardo DiCaprio or Brad Pitt, Josh’s career went seriously awry, forcing him to quit Hollywood altogether. So what happened?
Back in 2014, Josh gave a candid interview to Details where he explained exactly what went wrong with his career, including why the industry turned its back on him and why the cruelty of fame led him fleeing from Hollywood back to his Minnesota hometown. Watch the video to see what went down and see what he’s doing today.
Although Josh has some regrets about walking away from fame, he says a huge part of his career mistakes was just naivety. Josh became a celebrity when he was only 20, an age he says he wasn’t mature enough to handle the pressures of Hollywood.
“Fame can be a dangerous thing. It can destroy you,” Josh told Playboy in 2015. “I used to put myself in positions where I spoke up when I probably should have been listening. When you’re young and have convictions, and fame suddenly gives you a microphone, you think, I’m going to tell everybody how it is.”
Although he says his young rebelliousness led him into making a few bad career choices, he says he’s happy with how things are now and has no desire to be some big blockbuster A-lister à la Chris Pratt. “Fellini’s 8½ is my favorite film,” he said. “If at some point I can get away with doing something remotely as cool as those or anything Federico Fellini ever touched, I’ll be very happy.”