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Molly Ringwald Says She Turned Down Julia Roberts’ Role in ‘Pretty Woman’: “I Didn’t Really Like the Story”



Molly Ringwald is getting candid about finding her way in Hollywood when she was younger, and why she turned down an iconic role in Pretty Woman.

Early in her career, Ringwald was making her name as the new “It” girl with films like The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink and Sixteen Candlesbut when she wanted to branch out, she found it difficult.

“I didn’t really feel like darker roles were available to me,” she explained The Guardian in a recent interview. “The ones that I wanted to do, I didn’t get. I was too young for certain roles. I was at this weird in-between stage.”

As she tried to navigate the industry and figure out what projects suited her best, she even turned down some roles, including Julia Roberts’ Vivian Ward. Ringwald told the outlet that while the Erin Brockovich actress “was wonderful” in the hit 1990 rom-com, she “didn’t really like the story. Even then, I felt like there was something icky about it.”

The Garry Marshall-directed film follows a sex worker (Roberts) who was hired by a businessman (Richard Gere) to be his date for some social events, but they end up falling in love. Following the movie’s success, Roberts went on to receive an Oscar nomination for her role as Vivian.

But that wasn’t the only role Ringwald didn’t land. She also didn’t get parts in 1991’s The Silence of the Lambs and 1988’s Working Girl, and recalled the latter film’s director, Mike Nichols, telling her, “’She really needs to be at that moment where you feel the pain. You have your whole life ahead of you – nobody’s going to believe that of you.’”

Overall, the Riverdale The actress remembered struggling with having the spotlight on her, saying, “It’s hard to grow up under that.”

She continued, “I fully recognize my privilege – but I needed to get out from under all that scrutiny. I just wasn’t cut out for it in a way that certain other people are. Some people are really good at it. Taylor Swift is amazing! But I didn’t feel comfortable with that level of stardom.”

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