Sometimes you have to wait a moment for your moment.
For Naomi Watts her momentous big break into Hollywood didn't occur until she was 33 years old. As the cover girl for the September issue of Town & Country, the English actress is dishing on her journey to L.A. and the stardom struggles now that she's reached her destination.
Prior to her breakout role in Mulholland Drive, the now 45-year-old thesp started as a small player in minor movies, but with upcoming roles like Evelyn—the mother of Theo James' Four in the Divergent franchise—the blonde beauty is definitely an A-lister, yet she admits to the mag her early days were "excruciating."
Delving deeper into her first footsteps onto studio backlots, the Insurgent star reveals, "I had a cruel shock of, 'Wow, this isn't going to be like I thought it would be.' As someone who works from the gut and was sure I was in touch with it... Let's just say I was way off."
Watts didn't fare much better in front of casting directors, confessing "I believed everything they said about me—negative, horrible stuff."
And she's still not a fan of auditioning, saying "I'm an anxious person, and I hate being put in a position where I'm being tested. If I feel safe, I can be me, but if I don't feel safe, I try to please. I think, 'This part is for a sexy girl, so I'm going to be really sexy!' And it was like, it's not working!"
No longer a struggling starlet, the leading lady is working hit films now, but she's not blind to the realities of losing that title in Hollywood. "I'd rather be a character actress and have longevity—as much of it as I can—than kid myself into believing I'm always going to be a leading lady, you know?"
Though she does concede the pressures to stay young do get to her: "This being an industry town, that self-consciousness just pervades. There are days when I feel victorious that I have, you know, gotten this far [without plastic surgery]. But there are a million days when I look in the mirror and think, 'I'm going to do it.'"
Despite the self-doubt that pops up from time to time, Watts has found her place in Hollywood while also finding herself. "If only I'd known back then, over those 10 years of trying to prove myself, what I know now, which is just be you. I didn't trust that me was what people wanted."