After 58 years in Hollywood and over 60 acting credits, Robert Redford is officially retiring.
Most of us were expecting as much when the actor revealed the news himself a couple years back. During an interview with his grandson Dylan in 2016, Redford said after his next two gigs in front of the camera, he intended to spend more time behind it to direct. One of those movies was the Netflix romance drama Our Souls At Night opposite Jane Fonda, and the second is the upcoming David Lowery film. Now the 81-year-old (who turns 82 later this month) has confirmed the news – maybe he’s gonna let his young doppelgänger Brad Pitt take it from here? – but it sounds like even his future as a director remains uncertain.
In a new interview with Entertainment Weekly, Redford revealed Lowery’s The Old Man and the Gun will indeed be his final acting role. He noted that the story, which details the wild crimes of the real-life criminal Forrest Tucker, whose bank robberies and prison escapes spanned over 60 years, felt like the right film to end his acting career on:
Never say never, but I pretty well concluded that this would be it for me in terms of acting, and [I’ll] move towards retirement after this ’cause I’ve been doing it since I was 21. I thought, Well, that’s enough. And why not go out with something that’s very upbeat and positive?
Redford started off his acting career on the stage in the ‘50s, appearing in a handful of Broadway plays, including a 1959 production of Tall Story and later Barefoot in the Park, which he reprised for the 1969 film adaptation. He’s racked up over 60 acting credits across film and TV alone, and while Redford has two Oscars to his name, one for Best Director for Ordinary People and an Honorary Oscar, he’s never earned one for acting. Even crazier is that Redford’s only been nominated by the Academy for a performance once, in 1974 for The Sting. Will The Old Man and the Gun be enough to get him one last awards season campaign, and maybe even score him a nomination? The trailer certainly looks great.
As far as directing goes though, it sounds like Redford just wants to take a break from the indsutry for a minute. Though he said back in 2016 he intended to focus more on directing after retirement, when asked by EW about future directing gigs he simply said “we’ll see about that.” Fair. The guy’s been doing this for nearly his entire life, so perhaps he’ll just pop up at Sundance every now and then to say hey.
The Old Man and the Gun hits theaters on September 28.