Now that Shailene Woodley’s moved on to bigger and brighter screens, the 21-year-old is opening up about her time starring on The Secret Life of an American Teenager. Shailene rose to popularity thanks much in part to the show, but says that by the end of its five-year run she wasn’t looking forward to going to work.
“I didn’t like it because if it started to change, I had no control over it,” she told Flaunt. “It's like anything in life, whether you're an actor or you work in an insurance office, if you want to be able to leave your job, it's nice to be able to leave your job. But when you're in a contract, unfortunately, you can't do that.”
While filming The Secret Life, which just ended earlier this year, Shailene did get a break from traditional television work. She starred alongside George Clooney in 2011’s The Descendants and is currently promoting her latest film The Spectacular Now. And despite less than fond memories of her time on The Secret Life, Shailene says she’s grateful for the experience.
“It was a fantastic five years of my life, but towards the end, morally, the things that we were preaching on that show weren’t aligned with my own integrity,” she continued. “So that was a bit hard to show up to work every day knowing that we were going to project all of these themes to thousands, millions, of young adults across the country, when in fact they weren’t what I would like to be sending out.”
Although Shailene doesn’t specify what parts of the show didn’t align with her personal moral compass, we wonder if it has something to do with her character Amy Juergens’ dramatic choice to leave her three-year-old son to go to college.
What do you think Shailene’s referring to? Offer your suggestions in the comments below.