Christian Bale has been playing since he was young, but this Batman begins Actor did not enjoy a child star. Initially, there were certain things a younger Bale couldn’t stand as an actor.
Bale had a fairly early start in show business. Although his relatives were in show business, they had no connection to Hollywood. According to an interview Bale did with LA Weekly in 2007, his mother was a circus dancer and his uncle was an actor. The Oscar winner originally only became an actor out of passion.
“It wasn’t really my face growing up. But when I saw my mom do that, and I think I did too, I just realized that there was a chance not to have a nine-to-five job and a chance to travel and good, weird experiences, and , um, it just grabbed me more than anything. I didn’t really have an idea of going to college or anything,” Bale said.
When he officially entered the business, he was surprised at how much he enjoyed the art.
“Well, first of all, it came as a surprise to me how much I enjoyed it. I’ve always hated doing any school productions or anything like that because what I liked for me was the utter madness that everyone believes in what they’re doing and takes it really seriously. So, I didn’t like it when you did a school production where it was just fun for a few people,” he added.
Bale received one of his first major breaks by starring in Steven Spielberg’s feature film Empire of the Sun. That Hard times Star was only 13 when he landed the role. It was a role he landed through a combination of his own unique talents and luck. But it was also a career and an achievement he didn’t even plan for.
“It really came out of nowhere,” he said. “Incredible luck because I’m still doing it and I’m here and everything because if that had never happened…”
After having fun on the set of The sun, he discovered there was another part of acting that he didn’t enjoy. His childhood fame drew attention and interviews that usually came with raising an actor’s profile. And it was something that influenced his experiences as a young celebrity.
“It was crap for a while,” said Bale. “It sucked because all of a sudden you got the real experience of actually doing it, making the film, going to these countries, working with these people… and then suddenly it was just about the other side, which is them cheating side of it, I found out doing the whole press thing and I kind of couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t quite understand why people asked me for things they expected of me. I just didn’t quite get it. So that put me off everything for quite a while.”
For a while, Bale even wanted to reconsider his path.
“You know, I was still only 14. When I said that I kind of wanted to take a step back from my career, I didn’t even think about the fact that I had a career. I just found myself doing this thing that I really liked and suddenly people started talking about it like it was a career. It seemed to take the fun out of it,” he added.
In a 2013 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Bale opened up again about his struggles adjusting to being a child star. Initially, he found the career both rewarding and satisfying.
“It was money, you know? ‘Christ, my family could use this!’ So sure, alright, I did it; there was no reason not to. And everyone kept asking me to do it, and then it was like, ‘Oh, I could really do that,’ and you’re proud to be able to do that,” he confided.
But the downside to all that attention at a young age was that it ended up feeling like a prison for Bale. One that threatened his passion for acting and something he didn’t want his own children exposed to.
“I certainly wouldn’t let my daughter do something like that because it becomes a necessity and in this case it killed her — it actually killed my urge to act because it became something I felt like myself.” would have make. You know, you can’t enjoy something unless you’re actually forced to, but you feel this duty and obligation that a lot of people will suffer if you don’t,” he said.
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