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Anne Hathaway recalls career low point, fighting 'anxiety' and 'just smoking my nerves away'

Suzy Byrne
·Editor, Yahoo Entertainment
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Anne Hathaway is no different from many leading ladies — except for all the so-called think pieces about why people hate her.

The actress gets real about insecurities she has overcome in People magazine’s cover story. Even though the Serenity star had huge successes in her 20-year career, there were periods in which she suffered from “feelings of inadequacy, insecurity and nervousness and anxiety.”

Anne Hathaway says she’s “figured out how to say thank you to life by taking care of myself.” (Photo: Getty Images)
Anne Hathaway says she’s “figured out how to say thank you to life by taking care of myself.” (Photo: Getty Images)

“I remember 10 years ago being so scared going into the whole awards season,” she recalled. So she did “what I thought I was supposed to do” — mistreat herself. “I barely ate anything at Christmas,” she remembered. “I thought movie stars had to have a certain body. I was just smoking, just smoking my nerves away and wasn’t nourishing myself.” (Of note, this time period was just after her Italian boyfriend of four years, Raffaello Follieri, was arrested and imprisoned for his Vatican fraud scheme.)

She added, “I did everything so wrong for so long.”

Hathaway — who won an Oscar in 2013 for her supporting role in Les Misérables, the same year all those think pieces popped up (see: exhibits A, B and C) — said, “I just figured out how to say thank you to life by taking care of myself. By not apologizing for taking up space, which is not something I knew how to do 10 years ago.”

Anne Hathaway during awards season in 2009. (Photo: Getty Images)
Anne Hathaway during awards season in 2009. (Photo: Getty Images)

As for those haters? “Everybody’s entitled to their opinion,” she said. “What I appreciate is when the negativity has some intelligence behind it. What I don’t like is lazy negativity. If you’re going to take someone down, have a point of view! Be witty, maybe pun a little!”

Hathaway continues to learn, grow and take care of herself. The mom of a 2-year-old son, Jonathan, with producer Adam Shulman, recently said she gave up drinking until her kid grows up. She made the decision after she did the school run with a huge hangover.

“I quit drinking back in October, for 18 years,” she said on Ellen earlier this month. “I’m going to stop drinking while my son is in my house just because I don’t totally love the way I do it, and he’s getting to an age where he really does need me all the time in the morning.”

She continued, “I did one school run one day where I dropped him off at school. I wasn’t driving, but I was hungover and that was enough for me. I didn’t love that one.”

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