Michelle Pfeiffer Is Always Getting Second-Guessing Self (Probably!)

Michelle Pfeiffer Is Always Getting Second-Guessing Self (Probably!) ...

There is an inevitable event during every project when the actress attempts to be able to get herself out of it. "I'll be like, "Oh, I can't possibly do this for some crazy reason," she says, "some insurmountable thing that is really not insurmountable," according to her agent.

Pfeiffer often comes around, and she's gotten better at managing her fears. It took 20 years, but she no longer shakes her way through the first day on any new set, and she's finally stopped obsessing about daily footage of her work. If Pfeiffer still does not know if she is in the right movie, she says, "I deserve to be made fun of." Plus, watching herself had become a form of stress she didn't have to endure anymore.

"I've always had a very love-hate relationship with acting," she admits in a tea session in a Santa Monica hotel suite in early April. At the height of Pfeiffer's fame, she wore a knife and squished herself in the process before discovering how to do it properly. And on the back, she has vehemently demonized herself in tries, and explained how to do it right. Occasionally, she has yelled back, saying,

Pfeiffer wants to see former first lady Betty Ford during her 10-episode first season, which she has already tried to follow out or, worse, terminated herself. In fact, the ease with which she began with her new project, The Undoing, was evident to everyone in Pfeiffer's orbit, which she also included. The offer came from director Susanne Bier, who worked with David E. Kelley, and who later directed the series The Undoing.

"I told her that Betty is such a complicated person, she's fab and very gentle." Bier, who was amazed by how enigmatic and stunning Pfeiffer is, and two traits she believed would help the character. "I also get from Michelle that she has access to some pain."

Pfeiffer did not hesitate for the first time in her career. It was the kind of meaty role she never imagined during this stage of her career, and she'd be surrounded by other incredible individuals in front of and behind the screen. And, becoming an individual in the role, even the scenes in which Ford unravels, became simpler for her.

Pfeiffer, who was selected to lead the anthology series, claims that she was exactly what the project and the character required. "We felt that Michelle was that actress," she adds. "She's so capable and so brittle at the same time."


Pfeiffer was born 63 years ago to Richard, an air-conditioning contractor, and his wife Donna, who raised Pfeiffer and her three children in a blue-collar area of Orange County, California. In early pictures, she said, "I was like the Mafia don of my elementary school," although Pfeiffer was also unintentionally teased by minors who said her lips were too heavy or her walk too duck-like. At the time, she eventually found

Pfeiffer, who was constantly avoiding cantaloupes in a neighborhood Vons, asked herself what she expected to do with her life. During a beauty contest, she successfully scored herself an agent, and was named Miss Orange County. It's a strange story that gets embellished over time, but she insists it hasn't been. "Nope, I'm owe to that lady who was unconcerned about her cantaloupes."

Pfeiffer was in the process of repurposing her daughter, who was desperate to get answers. When she was preparing for a film about cults, she was aware that her father's addiction was severe, and she was in the process of repurposing her.

While they were on their honeymoon, Pfeiffer observed Horton for her first big break. While she was still married, she gives me examples, like the time she was contemplating a "sexy role" for television. I just read it and stated, and he commended you for being such a kind of kindness. Pfeiffer admitted, adding, "I was stepping back and forth to see you again."

Pfeiffer was constantly enraged by her second major role as Scarface's co-star. I was with this group of very talented actors and only one other woman whom I didn't even work with, and I was just waiting to be fired the whole time, she says. Thirty-five years later, she appeared on a panel with director Brian De Palma and her co-star Joe Pesci, where she spoke candidly about her appearance. I was also jealous of my ability to deal

Pfeiffer, who is embarrassed as she says, has never spoken up for herself or her characters, but believes that her age and experience have reacted positively to her. In fact, Bier claims that she was underwhelmed by her first lady, though she claims that she is not adamant.

Pfeiffer is becoming increasingly adept with her choices, even if she wasn't interested in her appearance. Unlike Paul Rudd, who has made four movies with Pfeiffer, believes that seeing her as a substitute for a curse. 'It always takes me a minute to see her,' says the actor. Kate Capshaw, who has been involved in Pfeiffer for over 40 years.

After seeing Scarface, she became one of the world's greatest, and feared for fame. 'And suddenly everybody knew who she was, and it terrified me,' she says, acknowledging how well she was in public sight, except for the work itself. 'I'm still not aware how long I can take it. I'm just not sure if I want it.'


Pfeiffer had flopped on her career, but never wanted to be a mother. By the time she had reached her mid-30s, she had made a series of high-profile relationships, but none had ended. So, she decided to adopt. Only her lawyer, Marty Bregman, whom she assumed to be a mentor and father in her life (he died in 2018 at 92) says, "I wanted to verify myself that I was doing it for the right reasons."

Claudia Rose was born in early 1993, but Pfeiffer arranged a blind relationship with Kelley shortly after, and she was desperate to meet them. It was Fanning's first film, and it was particularly touching because of Pfeiffer, who made sure that Fanning, who was 7 on the project, would still be born.

"I'll never forget that for my birthday, Michelle decorated my trailer and given me this whole Barbie set that we then played with in it," Fanning said. Twenty years later, she was back on set with Pfeiffer, who was often with her daughter during the Atlanta shoot. "They were replaced with wine," Fanning said. "She is still a kind, compassionate person."

Pfeiffer's own children grew up and had their own lives, and packing everyone up was no longer so straightforward. It became, "Well, I'll only shoot in the summer, and I'll only shoot here, and I'll only blah, blah, and blah," she said, and she wasn't remotely appreciative. After five years of receiving, she continued parenting, painting, and finishing the foundation for her own clean fragrance company, Henry Rose.

Pfeiffer says she realised that navigating things like paparazzi on her own was infuriating, but she was forced to go back to school again. Despite their frustration, she says, she never felt a lot of pain in seeing her children noticing what she saw.

Pfeiffer learned a few years later, when his oldest was still in second or third grade. 'Well, if you have been older, you are not going to be my mom,' she said of the letter. 'Well, they don't want to be my mom,' she says of her kids. So she sat them down and showed them Grease 2, the only age-appropriate thing on her curriculum at the time.

One can't help but wonder whether Kelley would play in one of his shows due to the sheer number of spooked roles she has written for women over 40. Pfeiffer, however, has previously described how she had done it for herself for the first time. But she suggests that instead of giving her friends a lot of attention, she will enlist Kelley's help. If she does so, she says, "I would never let anyone hurt my relationship," and says, "I always encourage you to do


Now that both of Pfeiffer's children are full-blown adults her daughter with a set of degrees from Ivy League institutions, including a doctor in social sciences she and Kelley have returned to L.A. He's got a slew of TV projects in between her myriad commitments to her 3-year-old fragrance company, equal parts passion project and "brain suck."

"The kinds of roles you're offered change as you develop and, in many ways, they're much more interesting now," Pfeiffer said of being an actor in today's society. It doesn't take long to see how uninterested she is in imagining what she would have been in earlier than it was with a recorder on. "I don't look back," she said before and then refocuss the discussion on what she's now, particularly: "Like, I'

Janet Van Dyne, who was introduced in 2018's Ant-Man and the Wasp, was the first person to appear in comic books since she won over a lot of fans, critics, and her co-star Michael Keaton, who performed in 1992's Batman Returns. "It would depend on the context, but, yeah, I'd consider it," Pfeiffer said. (For the record, she had intended to go see Zoe Kravitz's rendition in Batman, but

Rudd, his Ant-Man star, tries to enact Pfeiffer's stardom as a result of the day that all of Marvel's stars gathered to play Avengers: Endgame. "It was the first time a lot of people were going around, like, "Oh wow, there's the Guardians crew, and... there's the Black Panther crew," says the actor. "I remember going around with [Mark] Ruffalo and [Chris] He

Pfeiffer can still be a ball of nerves herself, even though she was not in the way she used to be when her entire identity was revealed in every role. I guess Im always sort of one foot in, one foot out, she says, implying that she would have been particularly interested in discussing her recent work, including her widely praised turn in French Exit, but Time magazine has now recalled the actress as a "matterly portrayer of women with demons who are in the

Pfeiffer marvels at another birthday, but she's still trying to comprehend how her plate came to life and she would like to do more, even try her hand at acting, she says. In fact, she has decided to take the rest of the year off to concentrate solely on the company. But who knows? These pledges are growing, and even for Dr. No. 1

This article appeared first in the April 27 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.

You may also like: