Virginia Madsen: Age Is Not the Enemy

The Oscar-nominated actress has come a long way since she got to Hollywood. Today she is enjoying the sweet ride of success and the advantages it brings. Below, an edited version of our interview with her

by Ilyssa Panitz • Celebrity Reporter
virginia madsen image
Photograph: Nick Holmes

More: What’s your take on plastic surgery or Botox?
VM: Less is more. You need to work on the inside out. You need to work on your spirit and personal health; otherwise, none of that stuff will work.

More: Are there any drawbacks to having a high-profile job?
VM: Sometimes it may be harder to bounce back. Disappointments can be more difficult, but you know how to persevere. It was very much a blessing for me not to win the Oscar for my work in Sideways, because if I did, the expectations would be huge to live up to that role of Maya. It did, however, give me the attention and recognition I needed.

More: You aren’t the slightest bit disappointed you didn’t take home the Academy Award?
VM: No. If anything, I remained the underdog and didn’t venture over into the stratosphere. There was no pressure for me to win again or be at the Oscars the next year. If anything, I got to enjoy the success of playing a wonderful role. Sideways is the movie that just keeps on giving, and for that reason alone I am so grateful.  

More: But you must be looking for a role like Maya, which garnered so much attention?
VM: I am always looking for that role that will bring me to the Academy Awards again as a nominee. You can’t look for an award in every role, and you can’t make a movie with the intention that you will get a nomination. You make a movie because you love the work. 

More: Another advantage to getting older: You starred alongside Morgan Freeman in Magnolia Home Entertainment’s The Magic of Belle Isle, now available on DVD.
VM: He is so wonderful and such a lovely man. I cooked pasta for Morgan and sang with him every day. Plus, it was directed by Rob Reiner. How awesome is that?

More: You were singing with Morgan Freeman? I love it!
VM: No, really, the man has an awesome voice. I told him to record an album because he is that good. But sadly, he said no because he only sings for his own pleasure!

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