You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Shailene Woodley: Working non-stop since ‘Descendants’

Youth Impact Report 2012: Bigscreen Kids

The 20-year-old’s star-making turn opposite George Clooney in Alexander Payne’s “The Descendants” not only won her rave reviews and a raft of awards (including an Independent Spirit Award for supporting actress and a Golden Globe nom) but also turbo-charged an already hot career.

Woodley, who stars in the hit ABC Family series “The Secret Life of the American Teenager” (which recently completed 100 episodes), has also been working on back-to-back features: “This past year’s been a total whirlwind, and I haven’t really had time to stop and analyze it,” she says.

But the L.A. native does know that “it’s no overnight success. I started off doing commercials and TV when I was just 5.” Her first TV role was in the 1999 telepic “Replacing Dad,” “and it took me 15 years to get to ‘The Descendants,’ ” she says.

Already a veteran in the business, Woodley has absorbed some “key lessons” from the likes of Payne and Clooney. “They’re so passionate and compassionate in how they approach work and life, and they stressed the importance of being choosey. You can get a ton of offers, but the script has to be there, and I really respond to movies that make me feel. If I’m not passionate about a project, I’m not going to do it, regardless of who’s involved.”

Woodley, who just signed on to Gregg Araki’s “White Bird,” says she has “no real career plan” beyond focusing on movies in the future. “They’re my real passion,” she says.

Impact: ” ‘The Descendants’ opened up so many doors and opportunities,” says the actress.
Next: Shooting “Spectacular Now,” directed by James Ponsoldt — “a truthful coming-of-age story that accurately depicts the trials and tribulations of being an adolescent.”
Causes: Find a Spring, Butchers Guild, All It Takes

More Voices

  • Tom Hanks Mr Rogers A BEAUTIFUL

    Tom Hanks' Portrayal of Mister Rogers May Put Him Back in Oscar's 'Neighborhood'

    Sony recently hosted a SAG-AFTRA screening of “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” the Marielle Heller-directed drama starring Matthew Rhys as a magazine writer who befriends Fred Rogers, played by Tom Hanks. While the screening didn’t include a guild Q&A with cast or the film’s creative team, the audience was greeted with a video message from [...]

  • Joe Pesci, Al Pacino, Martin Scorsese,

    Martin Scorsese and 'The Irishman' Enter Oscar Race With World Premiere at NYFF

    Even with its three-hour run time and a short 28 days in theaters before it’s available on Netflix, Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman” is likely to be a major contender at the Oscars. The 57th New York Film Festival opened on Friday night with the world premiere of the epic real-life mob drama. Scorsese and his [...]

  • Brad Pitt Once Upon a Time

    How Much Does Hitting the Awards Season Circuit Really Matter to Stars Like Brad Pitt?

    “Do you want an Oscar?” That’s the first question one top awards consultant asks any potential contender when they first start talking. Everyone is wondering how Brad Pitt would answer that question these days. He recently raised eyebrows and made headlines when he proclaimed that he would not be campaigning this awards season. “Oh, man. I’m [...]

  • Renee Zellweger'Judy' film premiere, Arrivals, Samuel

    'Judy's' L.A. Premiere: Renée Zellweger Takes Another Ruby Step Toward the Oscars

    Renée Zellweger continues to follow the yellow brick road to the Oscars. The Los Angeles premiere of Judy on Thursday night in Beverly Hills kept the Academy Award winner on track for a possible second win come February. “We’re just so happy we’re able to share it with you tonight,” Zellweger said to the crowd [...]

  • Barry Bill Hader

    Emmys 2019: Clear Favorites and Top Challengers for This Year's Winners (Column)

    If this felt like the longest, most expensive Emmy campaign in history, you might be right. For one thing, the 2019 Primetime Emmys will be held Sept. 22, which is the latest the ceremony has taken place since 2013. That also happened to be the last year of TV’s quaint, pre-streaming era, before outlets like [...]

  • Fleabag Succession Emmys

    Could 'Fleabag' and 'Succession' Be Spoilers on Emmy Night? (Column)

    At the onset, this year’s Emmy Awards felt a bit anticlimactic, as the final seasons of “Game of Thrones” and “Veep” appeared to have this year’s drama and comedy categories locked up before campaigning even began. But that’s how upsets happen: Just when we’re pretty confident about how things might go, a couple of wild [...]

  • Climate Mobilization

    Marshall Herskovitz: Why the Climate Crisis Needs Movie Marketing-Style Muscle

     I’ve lived inside the climate-communications conundrum for 20 years, working with scientists, academics and activists to find ways to convince Americans that something they couldn’t see or feel was nevertheless a looming catastrophe worth upending their lives to fight. Now the climate crisis is undeniable, and we are finally seeing the beginnings of concerted action. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content