Back in the day, you know, in the ‘90s, Cameron Diaz was at the top of her class. Her lasting impression was actually her first, the 1994 movie she co-starred in with funny man (to some) Jim Carrey. That movie was The Mask and Diaz’s career took off. Her beauty was undeniable. She had a wicked sense of humor that only enhanced said beauty. She began to crank out hit after hit, huge payday after huge payday. My Best Friend’s Wedding, There’s Something About Mary, Being John Malkovich, Charlie’s Angels, and Gangs of New York; her film roles are legendary. So, what gives? Why haven’t we seen Cameron Diaz on-screen in six years?
It’s true. The last time we saw Cameron Diaz in front of the camera was in the 2014 musical remake of Annie where she portrayed Mrs. Hannigan. At the time, Cameron was only 40-years-old. The movie itself was panned by critics and didn’t fare well at the box office, but this definitely was no fault of Diaz’s. It doesn’t seem to be the impetus for Diaz walking away from Hollywood. No, according to Diaz herself (now 47), it was a simple matter of timing. She dished in an article she penned in InStyle. “I’ve given more than half of my life to the public. I feel like it’s OK for me to take time for myself now.” But it turns out there’s more to it than that.
HER NEW CAREER IN WINE
First, let’s establish that Cameron Diaz has basically retired from the acting game. For now, she prefers to stay away from in front of the camera. She does keep busy with her 9-month-old daughter Raddix. She also has a new venture with her partner in crime, Who What Wear founder Katherine Power, as the two recently launched their brand of “clean” wine they call Avaline.
The new winemakers are offering two summer varieties, the Avaline Rosé, which is a light French type with a hint of melon and zest while the Avaline White is a dry Spanish wine that offers a crisp, fresh finish. For those of you who would like to know the “clean” aspect of the wine, here is what Diaz had to say to Travel & Leisure about it: “…in our day-to-day lives we made the effort to consume organic foods and use clean products. So when we found out what might be in the wine we were drinking, we wanted to make sure that we found wines that were free from those ingredients and most importantly made from organically farmed grapes. But we found it really difficult to identify those wines unless we went to specialty wine shops. We wanted to create a wine that not only met the standards for all other products we consumed; we also wanted to make it accessible and identifiable.”
The problem the duo is having with their wine, unfortunately, is that it has received a D rating out of the gate. Per the New York Post, a survey asked 400 households to rate various celebrity wines, Avaline being one. For this survey, it only included whites and was part of author Mark Oldman’s “Celebrity White Wine Showdown.”
While the survey size was quite small, a D-rating does not bode well when trying to launch a new wine. That rating plus the fact that Avaline sells for $24 a bottle may make some leery when selecting their next wine. You may want to pick up a bottle and give it a taste. Or given the D-rating, maybe not.
Why Cameron Diaz Stopped Acting
Diaz’s professional acting career has covered 20 years. In one 12-month period of her career, from June 1, 2007, to June 1, 2008, Diaz topped the list of paid actresses by raking in over $50 million during that time frame. Her recurring vocal role as Princess Fiona in Dreamworks’ Shrek franchise had much to do with it, but she also had the hit movie What Happens In Vegas, in which she starred with Ashton Kutcher. In the following six years, Diaz went on to star in hits such as Knight and Day (with Tom Cruise), The Green Hornet, Bad Teacher, Shrek Forever After, and a few Shrek shorts thrown in for good measure. Even though some of her movies didn’t hit the high note she was hoping for (Hello, Green Hornet) her star never dipped.
Talking to Goop about why she quit acting Cameron Diaz says, “I just decided that I wanted different things out of my life. I had gone so hard for so long, working, making films and it’s such a grind. I didn’t really make any space for my personal life. And then I decided, you know, to stop making movies. And really focus on my personal life, my personal relationships with my family and friends. And then Benj and I met each other and we got married pretty much immediately.”
That’s right, there’s more to life than being famous. Diaz explains, “I feel like it’s a strange thing to say. I know a lot of people won’t understand it. I know you [Gwyneth] understand it. But it’s so intense to work at that level and be that public and put yourself out there. There’s a lot of energy coming at you at all times when you’re really visible as an actor and doing press and putting yourself out there… I realized I handed off parts of my life to all these other people and they took it and I had to basically take it back and take responsibility for my own life. That’s my job.”
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So would she ever go back? Maybe not. Cameron has said in the past, “I don’t miss performing. Right now I’m looking at the landscape of wellness and all that.” And that is what she’s doing. Cameron Diaz reflected on her career, back then and now. “At this point, I’ve done so much, I feel fulfilled with the adventures I’ve sought out in my life. I’m in a great place, and the world is so different now too. The mid-1990s are an era that will never exist again. I’m just so grateful that I got to witness and partake in it.” Cameron doesn’t sound bitter in the least. There was no one thing that made her step away… or was there?
Cameron Diaz married Benji Madden, the lead guitarist and backing vocalist of the band Good Charlotte in 2015. He is also part of the pop-rock group The Madden Brothers, which he formed with his identical twin brother. Diaz and Madden became acquainted 10 months prior when the couple was introduced by her sister-in-law Nicole Ritchie. “Getting married to him was the best thing that ever happened to me. My husband’s the best,” she said in her InStyle piece. “He’s the greatest human being, and he’s my great partner. Marriage is certainly hard, and it’s a lot of work. You need somebody who’s willing to do the work with you because there’s no 60-40 in marriage. It’s 50-50, period. All the time.”
While it doesn’t sound like Madden was the exact reason Diaz walked away from Hollywood, she views her husband in the highest regard. “I don’t know if I was ready [when I got married], but I knew Benji was special. He’s just a good man. There’s no bullshit. It’s really refreshing. I’m really grateful for him.”
She is also excited to be a quarantine mom after having her first child with Madden. They welcomed baby Raddix, born in December 2019 though the announcement came in January 2020. As she told it to Who What Wear chief executive officer Katherine Power on Power’s Instagram Live, quarantine life has been a quiet pleasure. “I’ve kinda been living a quarantine life anyhow because I have a three-month-old or a three-and-a-half-month-old,” Cameron Diaz said. “So, my life has been like completely quiet and still for the last few months.“
That doesn’t mean being in quarantine with a new baby has been easy. Cameron Diaz says, “It’s crazy. We did it all on our own as well from the very beginning. We had a night nurse for a few weekends before any of this happened but just like for the weekends just to get some sleep. And we haven’t since. It’s amazing to be able to spend the time, but my little one just started rolling over. So right now, you can put yours down and leave her, but you can’t just leave her on the bed while you do your calls. But yeah, it’s really wild.”
While Cameron also said that being a mom to Raddix is the “best, best, best part of my life”, she was also quick to include her husband. “I’m so grateful and so happy and it’s the best thing ever,” she said. “I’m so lucky to do it with Benji and we’re having the best time.”
So, that’s that. There is no hidden reason as to why Cameron Diaz has taken quite a few steps back from Hollywood. She is content, she is happy, and she loves being a mom.
Will Cameron Diaz Ever Return To Acting?
She hasn’t worked in a while but she did just show up in an epic fight video directed by legendary stunt coordinator Zoe Bell. In it, over 30 of the most badass women ever to grace the screen throw down with each other including Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, Scarlett Johansson, Margot Robbie, Rosario Dawson, Lucy Lawless, Daryl Hannah (in full Kill Bill mode), Rosie Perez, Thandie Newton, Rosario Dawson and so so many more. Watch Cameron throw down with all of them…
But does this mean it’s the last we’ll ever see from her in front of the camera? According to Cameron Diaz, “I like doing my own thing. I like creating, so I’m just looking for the project that makes the most sense for me now. I have some things brewing, but it’s a little too early to talk about them.”
Cameron hasn’t forgotten about her Hollywood past though, as evidenced by this reunion with her former Charlie’s Angels co-stars…
STILL HAPPY AFTER ALL THESE RETIRED YEARS
Cameron Diaz still has no plans to return to acting any time soon. As she nears her 50th birthday, the one-time A-lister and star of such hits like There’s Something About Mary, Charlie’s Angels, Gangs of New York, Knight and Day, and the Shrek franchise, appears to be content with her decision to walk away from Hollywood. Her last Tinsel Town film was the 2014 remake of Annie.
During her eight-year retirement, Ms. Diaz has remained busy. The year after she ended her career with Annie, she married lead guitarist and vocalist of the band Good Charlotte, Benji Madden. In 2019, they welcomed their daughter Raddix.
Stepping away from acting has proved to be fairly easy for Ms. Diaz as she has transitioned nicely into wife, mom, and now author and winemaker. Her first book was the 2013 New York Times bestseller The Body Book: The Law of Hunger, the Science of Strength, and Other Ways to Love Your Amazing Body, which she followed up with the 2016 title, The Longevity Book: The Science of Aging, the Biology of Strength, and the Privilege of Time. When Ms. Diaz isn’t being a mom, she also keeps busy with the Avaline wine brand that she started with her partner Katherine Power.
While it appears that Ms. Diaz remains happy with retirement, she typically isn’t far from a camera. She posts consistently to her Instagram and recently even went nostalgic by recreating, with some help, her There’s Something About Mary character, complete with the red dress and infamous hairdo. The posted video begins with Benito Skinner (aka Benny Drama), a comedian and social media star, driving with his boyfriend to Ms. Diaz’s home for a dinner date. When they arrive, things begin to get weird. Check it out:
Ms. Diaz opens her front door to Benny Drama’s boyfriend, then Benny Drama himself jumps out dressed like Ms. Diaz’s character in There’s Something About Mary. He is wearing the same tight red dress and has a blonde wig on with the famous “gelled” hairdo. Ms. Diaz doesn’t appear too thrilled to see him dressed this way, but after a brief moment, she smiles, steps back, and turns into that same character from the movie.
It’s a fun short clip that immediately takes you back but also has you wondering if Ms. Diaz is starting to get the acting bug again. One can only hope.