No laughing matter. Jim Carrey has opened up about being back in the spotlight after many years of doing his best to escape it.
The Liar, Liar star, 56, discussed his departure from Hollywood while speaking with The Hollywood Reporter in an article published on Wednesday, August 15, where he revealed, “I just didn’t want to be in the business anymore. I didn’t like what was happening, the corporations taking over and all that. And maybe it’s because I felt pulled toward a different type of creative outlet and I really liked the control of painting — of not having a committee in the way telling me what the idea must be to appeal to a four-quadrant whatever.” (Carrey has found a new hobby that he finds pleasure in: creating anti-Trump paintings.)
The funnyman became a household name following his success from In Living Color back in 1990, which led to his iconic performance as Ace Ventura: Pet Detective. That role, he recounted to The Hollywood Reporter, was fueled by a curious desire: “My plan was not to join Hollywood, it was to destroy it. Like, take a gigantic sledgehammer to the leading man and to all the seriousness.”
The freedom to do things his way has paid off recently. Not only is he an executive producer of Showtime’s I’m Dying Up Here, but his new show Kidding will premiere on the network in September. In Kidding, he plays Mr. Pickles, a lovable television star on a children’s show who is fighting his own demons: a role that he found suitable. “I think the idea of identity, the search for identity, what it is, who we are, what’s an authentic person is a theme that’s always been attractive to me,” Carrey said at a Television Critics Association panel on Monday, August 6. “And I think that there’s definitely something in this piece that calls me as far as the idea of being hit by a freight train in life and trying to hang on to the idea of yourself that you had before it happened that’s really attractive.”
Throughout his career, Carrey has made iconic comedies including The Cable Guy and Dumb and Dumber — but he also found himself dealing with the dark side of fame. In 2015, his girlfriend Cathriona White died by suicide at her home in Sherman Oaks, California. A note was discovered at the scene that mentioned the actor, and he was later sued by White’s family for wrongful death. In December 2016, Carrey’s lawyer filed a motion to dismiss the claims, claiming the lawsuit was a “shameful shakedown for money.” The lawsuit was dismissed earlier this year. In September 2017, he also gave a bizarre interview during a New York Fashion Week event, saying, “I wanted to find the most meaningless thing that I could come to and join and here I am.”
Carrey seems to have found solace, however. “After everything I’ve been through, I feel like I can sit down with most people,” he noted at the TCA panel. “Look them in the eye and say, ‘What is it? What did you go through? ‘Cause here’s what I went through and guess what, it’s still love. It’s still good.’”