Why Josh Hartnett purposely skipped out on Hollywood

Do you remember Josh Hartnett? He was the hunk at the center of Pearl Harbor, Black Hawk Down, and a slew of other Hollywood blockbusters.

Though in recent years, you might’ve noticed that he’s taken a step back from the whole scene. And there’s a reason for that.

Why Josh Hartnett purposely skipped out on Hollywood
Photo from Dave Benett/Getty Images

On December 8, the 43-year-old actor made an appearance on Australia’s Channel Seven morning program Sunrise and claimed that keeping “Hollywood at bay” at the peak of his career was the best thing for his mental health.

“At that point in my life, when I was so young and just trying to form my own personality, I just felt it was too much, honestly,” he said. “I was happy to be going to work and making films, and coming home and hanging out with people who I knew cared about me, instead of, you know…hobnobbing.”

He also added that any more time in the “Hollywood game” wouldn’t have been good for his career. He stated, “I think people would have gotten pretty sick of me. I’m happy to be making films, 20-something years later.”

Over the years, Hartnett continued to take on smaller roles for TV and film, as it didn’t require him to leave his family as often. Last year, he starred in the TV series Paradise Lost; this year, he was also part of the film Ida Red.

Despite leaving Hollywood, the 40 Days and 40 Nights star has admitted to a few career regrets, namely the loss of his role in the award-winning 2005 film Brokeback Mountain.

“Unfortunately, I was going to do ‘Brokeback Mountain,’ and I had a contract with [2006 film] ‘Black Dahlia’ that I had to film, so I had to drop out of it,” Hartnett said. “It was a different film altogether, it was me and Joaquin Phoenix. But they went on to do it with Heath [Ledger] and Jake [Gyllenhaal].”

He added, “I’ve always wanted to kiss Joaquin, so that’s my biggest regret.”

However, it seems that Hartnett is doing just fine. He married fellow actress Tamsin Egerton and shares three children with her.

Art Macky Arquilla

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