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James Franco Opens Up About Battling Depression

James Franco
James Franco attends the “Kink” New York Premiere at IFC Center in New York City. Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images

James Franco is opening up about the moment he realized he was battling depression. In a new interview with OUT magazine, the actor, 39, explained that his career choice in combination with his “very addictive” personality led to feelings of isolation.

“When I was a teenager I got over certain addictions, and that’s when I started acting, at age 17,” he said in an interview published on Tuesday, August 1. “I really threw myself into it, and that became everything, to the point where I didn’t even socialize. And then after, like, 10 years of that, at age 27, I realized, Man, I’m so depressed. On the surface my life seems pretty good—I have a career and everything—but I feel isolated and lonely. So then I threw myself into school, but again it was just this sort of running, running, running.”

Related: Stars Who’ve Battled Mental Health Issues

Despite the emotional effects his career has had on him emotionally, Franco insists he will continue to act in addition to directing. “I’ve got to say, of all the things that I’ve done, and I’ve done a lot, the actual process of directing is the most fun, because you’re in the middle of all these different creative people,” he said. “But no, I will not stop acting.”

Still, Franco will be more selective with the projects he takes on going forward. “Most actors come to a point in their lives where they have to reassess what they’re doing and why they’re doing it,” he said. “And for me, after going back to school and trying to do all these other things, this new chapter, with surfing and dancing, is really about slowing down and trying to focus on fewer things but in a deeper, more quality-filled way.”

Related: Celebrity Health Scares

Up next, the Freaks and Geeks alum will star in The Disaster Artist. Franco’s previous credits include Pineapple Express, Spider-man and Making a Scene With James Franco

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