Gaby Hoffman on her Return to Acting: “I spent my twenties letting myself not decide and letting myself be lost”


Gaby Hoffman was one of the most unique child actresses of her time with roles in movies like Sleepless in Seattle and Now and Then. So it’s only fitting that she winds up playing the sister of Adam Driver‘s character on Girls. It’s the perfect sibling partnership.

Hoffman spoke to the New York Post about her career and her new role on the HBO show.

The 32-year-old actress shared how she got the role in the first place. She explained, “I don’t look at the role beforehand — Lena [Dunham] just said, I’ve written this part of Adam’s sister with you in mind,’ and there wasn’t a decision to be made. I just said, ‘Of course I’ll come play with you.””

It certainly helped that the two were childhood friends who reconnected at a film festival at Brooklyn’s BAM theater. After staying touch, Dunham offered her the role of Caroline, the manic and unstable sister of Adam.

She enjoyed the experience tremendously, “We had a lot of serious, difficult stuff to do. But I just had so much fun. The most fun two days of my life were getting to fight with Adam Driver.”

For the Crystal Fairy and the Magical Cactus star, it’s nice to see her career back on track. She took a long hiatus to find herself and what she really wanted to do with her life.

“When I went to college in 1999, I left my agents and said goodbye to [acting],” she said. “Then I spent my twenties letting myself not decide and letting myself be lost. It was a very confusing time, and I did not enjoy it.”

After spending time as a doula, which is a former job her Girls character also experimented with, Hoffman realized where she needed to be—back in the acting game.

“So I said right then and there, OK I’m going to spend one year furiously acting, like taking whatever jobs. [Before that], I would be broke and not audition for something because even the audition would provoke a whole spiral of uncertainty and anxiety about what I wanted. So I just thought: I’m not going to question it all, I’m going to say yes and dive in and have as much experience acting as I can — you know, barring total sh-t,” said the former child star.

Things are looking up for Hoffman who recently shot a pilot for her own show after completing her four-episode arc on Girls.

“I’m really happy to be back at work. I’m just relieved to have figured out that I am very interested in acting and love it. It’s great that I’m able to do it — I feel very lucky,” concluded Hoffman.
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