Why ‘Alice in Wonderland’ Star Mia Wasikowska Left Hollywood
Whatever happened to Mia Wasikowska?
The Australian actress made a name for herself in the U.S. on the HBO drama series In Treatment in 2008. In 2010, Wasikowska, then 21, became a Hollywood It Girl thanks to her high-profile role as Alice in Disney's Tim Burton-directed, fantastical live-action adaptation of Alice in Wonderland. The film also starred Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter, Anne Hathaway as the White Queen and Helena Bonham-Carter as the Red Queen.
The same year, Wasikowska also starred in the Oscar-nominated 2010 film The Kids Are All Right. In 2015, she starred in Guillermo del Toro's gothic horror, Crimson Peak, and in 2016 she returned to Wonderland in Disney's Alice Through the Looking Glass sequel.
At the height of Alice in Wonderland's popularity, Wasikowska was a fixture in young Hollywood, appearing on the covers of magazines such as Teen Vogue and being included on the TIME 100 list of the world's most influential people.
However, we haven't seen or heard much from the once in-demand actress over the past few years. Now, we finally know why.
In a new interview with IndieWire, Wasikowska, now 33, revealed why she left Hollywood not long after 2016's Alice sequel.
"I didn’t entirely like the lifestyle of going back to back to back. I felt really disconnected from any greater community. I was doing it since I had been 17, well, more like 15, but really working a lot from 17. I spent 10 to 15 years, completely like, new city, new country, every three months, and it’s like starting school again every few months. Especially when you’re younger, when you don’t have that base, I found that really hard," Wasikowska explained of her busy Hollywood lifestyle.
"Maybe if the payoff is good and you feel really great doing it, then that’s okay, but I didn’t. So I wanted to establish that for myself on a personal level and have more of a sense of somewhere I belong that’s not just on a film set that ends every few weeks," she continued.
Wasikowska returned to her hometown of Sydney, Australia, after she left the glitz and glamor of Hollywood behind.
What Is Mia Wasikowska Doing Now?
Today, Mia Wasikowska still acts but mostly sticks to personally fulfilling indie films such as 2021's Bergman Island opposite Vicky Krieps, which was critically acclaimed.
In 2022, she appeared in Blueback, a movie about a young girl who becomes a passionate activist for Australia's coral reefs after befriending a wild blue groper fish while diving.
"I’m pretty content. If I can have the best of both worlds, which is dip in and out of it occasionally, I’d be really happy, but I wouldn’t ever be in that place where I was just on a treadmill. I want to do more things in life other than be in a trailer," Wasikowska told IndieWire of her life outside the spotlight.
"It’s great, and there are lots of great things, [but] the perception of it is quite different from the reality, and it didn’t suit me as a person. You can really lose perspective because you’re treated quite strangely. When that’s your only reality, it’s quite strange," she added.