Jennifer Love Hewitt: Why She’s Scared About Her Big Return To Television

By Rick Gonzales

Jennifer Love Hewitt

Jennifer Love Hewitt’s career can be called the tale of two. There was the “before mom” portion, that comprises the bulk of her career and there is the “after mom” portion that she is currently working on. So far, the talented actress, producer, singer, author, and mother is as successful now as she was then. She has just slowed down. As in way slowed down.

So if you’re wondering why you haven’t seen Jennifer Love Hewitt much lately, we’ve got the answer.


Jennifer Love Hewitt

95% of Jennifer Love Hewitt’s career came before she became a mom two times over. She first burst onto the scene in the kid show, Kids Incorporated. It was a kid’s entertainment show featuring a lot of music and dancing as well as skits in between the musical numbers. Stars like Fergie, Mario Lopez, Ryan Lambert (Rudy from The Monster Squad), and Eric Balfour got their start on the show. She lasted two seasons on the variety show before she moved on to other series.

Fun note: when she first began her career Jennifer Love Hewitt did not use her first name, she appeared as “Love Hewitt” in many of her early credited roles.

Party of Five
Jennifer Love Hewitt on Party of Five

Jennifer Love Hewitt was no stranger to TV series in her early career. She was part of the Shaky Ground crew, moved on to The Byrds of Paradise, then McKenna and while she was busy and active, her first big push into the spotlight came in 1997 when she starred in the horror film I Know What You Did Last Summer with Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe, and Freddie Prinze Jr. The movie was a big hit among horror fans which resulted in the follow-up, I Still Know What You Did Last Summer that also saw Prinze Jr. return for a second time.

By this time, the young actress’s career was in full swing. While starring in these features, she was also in the TV series Party of Five, which also made names of Matthew Fox, Scott Wolf, Neve Campbell, and Lacey Chabert. It was also during this time that Jennifer made the movie she may be best known for: Can’t Hardly Wait.

Jennifer Love Hewitt
JLH in The Truth About Love

As her career continued to blossom, Jennifer Love Hewitt included a couple roles where she played famous people. She played Audrey Hepburn in The Audrey Hepburn Story and she played Frank Sinatra’s daughter Nancy in the TV series American Dreams.

After, she continued to bounce around genres starring in the kid’s movies Garfield and Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties as well as the rom-com The Truth About Love as well as a quick turn in Tropic Thunder.

Ghost Whisperer
Jennifer Love Hewitt in The Ghost Whisperer

While she was also seen in the TV series Time of Your Life, her work was leading up to her hit TV series, Ghost Whisperer. Jennifer Love Hewitt led that cast for five seasons, playing Melinda Gordon, a young woman who has the ability to communicate with recently deceased earthbound spirits aka ghosts.

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Upon the completion of Ghost Whisperer, Jennifer Love Hewitt moved on to other projects. Strangely though, 2012 was the last time she made a feature film, the forgettable Jewtopia. The success of her many TV series kept her on that track as she was seen in The Client List, Hot In Cleveland, and finally Criminal Minds. It was Criminal Minds where her first “career” ended in 2015.


Jennifer Love Hewitt on The Client List

JLH is not only an actor. She has added producer to her resume as well as a singer. Her producing credits include Ghost Whisperer, The Client List, and the aforementioned forgettable Jewtopia. What may not be well known is the fact that Love Hewitt is an accomplished singer. She started that portion of her career very early on, releasing three CDs in the span of four years. Love Songs in 1992, Let’s Go Bang in 1995, and the self-titled Jennifer Love Hewitt in 1996. Her last release came in 2002 with the BareNaked CD.

To top it all off, Jennifer is an author too. She published The Day I Shot Cupid in 2010 and then amazingly released a five-issue comic book series titled Jennifer Love Hewitt’s Music Box.


Jennifer Love Hewitt  now

The now 42-year old Jennifer Love Hewitt opened up to Working Mother when asked about her time away from Hollywood. “I worked [on Criminal Minds] when my daughter was 8 months old up until my son was born [nine months later],” she explained. The actress took almost three years off after her son was born. “They were like, ‘You’re in the middle of a career; you can’t do that.’ But I was like, ‘I can because that’s what’s in my heart.’ I have so much admiration for women who can have their babies and go straight back to work. But I needed to work on myself, get into a different place before being able to do that,” and that is exactly what she did.

Jennifer Love Hewitt married to fellow actor Brian Hallisay since 2013 when their daughter was born. The couple, still married, had their boy in 2015.

Jennifer took the time she felt necessary before she stepped back into the ring with the hit series 9-1-1. Initially, she struggled with the decision to stay at home, then struggling when she decided it was time to work again. For her, though, the decisions were the right thing, something Jennifer Love Hewitt has made peace with.

Now, even though she is a constant force on 9-1-1, Jennifer Love Hewitt has definitely eased up on her workload. Much of her extra-curricular work comes in the form of writing and wine. She is currently working on a children’s book while also releasing two wines with her husband Brian.


Tanning Bed

Part of the reason Jennifer Love Hewitt has been absent from Hollywood is that she’s busy being a mom. But that’s only part of the story. Another big reason is that she simply burned herself out.

In an interview with the LA Times, Hewitt revealed that she worked hard mostly out of fear. She says, “I was afraid that I was going to lose it all.” At some point she simply got tired. Add in motherhood and the death of her own mother in 2012, and the actress part of her life felt done. She still works now and then, but she’s happy being at home.


While you don’t see Jennifer Love Hewitt in as many movies anymore, you can see the actress on social media. Or at least, you could. For now, the actress has decided to step away from her usually active social media accounts. She explained why on her Instagram, saying that the birth of her third child sees her taking a step back. She needs to take some more time for self care that includes her family and time to herself, and less time scrolling. The last photo she shared was of her pregnant belly right before giving birth.


jennifer love hewitt
9-1-1: Jennifer Love Hewitt in the “Breaking Point” episode of 9-1-1 airing Monday, March 8 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. CR: FOX. © 2021 FOX Media LLC.

Jennifer Love Hewitt has steadily been working her way back into acting, though she is scared to return to her former gig. Hewitt was on the hit series, 9-1-1, but fears that her character’s choices might echo larger on her in real life. The character she portrays, Maddie, abandons her own daughter in the show. That unforgivable act is something that she hopes doesn’t fall back on her as a mother, especially considering she left the series for maternity leave when her second child was born. Women often deal with postpartum depression after childbirth, and that is something that the actress wanted to portray in the show for mothers around the world. Maddie attempts to take her own life because of her PPD but brings herself back up to want to be a mother again. The reasoning behind Maddie abandoning her child is something that Hewitt hopes can be forgiven for the character’s sake.


The former actress is now 43 years old. Jennifer Love Hewitt took to Instagram and posted the following photo which celebrates her aging.

Though she doesn’t do many interviews anymore and seems to avoid the spotlight, she has been an active force on Instagram over the years.