Hilary Duff on being a child actor: I wish I had a better education

Hilary Duff’s new show, How I Met Your Father, is now airing. Hulu keeps suggesting it for me, but I haven’t seen it yet. I didn’t watch the Mother version, but I’ll wait to hear what you guys think on the new one. Hilary struck gold with her show Younger that ended last season. However, Hilary has worked steadily since she started in the business at the age of 10. Hilary spoke to Cosmopolitan, recently, mostly about HIMYF and her character, Sophie. But they also touched on the Lizzie McGuire reboot that fell through, her kids discovering her music and being a child star. Hilary said she doesn’t regret giving her childhood up to acting. But she does wish she had gotten a better education.

Would she leak the footage of the halted Lizzie reboot: I like the way you think. I would be lying if I didn’t say I didn’t have those thoughts a few times. But I wouldn’t, because in my 34 years I’ve realized that everything does happen for a reason. There’s a time and a place for everything. It just wasn’t her moment. I’m constantly asked about it still. All it does is breathe life into the fact that people still want it, and that’s really sweet. It’s not dead, and it’s not alive.

Her daughter loves her song Sparks: I can’t get away from it because someone exposed my three-year-old to it. We get in the car, and I have to listen to my own music because my daughter’s screaming, “I want ‘parks, I want ‘parks.” I’m rolling up to her preschool, and every time I turn it way down she’s like, “Why do you turn it off? Why you turn it off?” Like, girl. I’m not rolling up to your preschool blasting my own shit. So embarrassing.

What would she do differently: Yeah. I wouldn’t do it all exactly the same, but I can’t look at my life and be like, “I wish this was different,” because I don’t know if it would get me to where I am right now. I wish I had a little bit of a better education. I wish I had a little bit of a college experience. But what would that look like? The thing that I crave out of it wouldn’t look the way I pictured it because of who I am and how I came up.

It’s weird to say “who I am to others,” but it would be hard to erase that element to have a normal experience. I feel smart, but there’s certain things that people talk about where it literally isn’t in my brain because I didn’t experience it. I learned other things that people don’t have a clue about. But I don’t sit and harp on that.

[From Cosmopolitan]

I find Hilary’s answer on a college experience realistic and admitting her lack of regret refreshing. I got so much out of my college experience, but not everyone may find it as valuable as I did. Especially since the value I found was in direct response to my terrible experience in high school. Hilary’s right, she was never going to escape who she was in a public environment. So even if she had gone to college, she wouldn’t have had the experience she’d wished for. As for wanting a better education, I always wonder about on-set tutors. Who regulates them? I’m sure some are fantastic, but if a kid doesn’t want to do their work – like most kids – does the tutor get pressure from agents and managers to just let the kid slide?

I thought the story about turning her song off so Hilary doesn’t get caught listening to her own music was really funny. And you know that’s how it would get reported too. The interview asked about the Younger spin off with Kelsey. Hilary seemed cool on it, saying she’d favor a Younger movie instead. But then she reminded everyone that the creator, Darren Star, is currently busy with Emily in Paris so yeah, we aren’t getting a Younger anything for a while.

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18 Responses to “Hilary Duff on being a child actor: I wish I had a better education”

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  1. Swack says:

    If she wants more education she could be doing so right now.

    • FHMom says:

      My thought exactly. It’s never too late to get an education, especially if you have the money

    • thinking says:

      She seemed to be talking about having a little bit more of that college experience (i.e the parites and socializing?) everyone talks about, not necessarily the education itself.

      So, in full context, I don’t think she’s necessarily talking about regretting not getting an education in terms of “knowledge” but more in terms of the social interactions that come out of it (if you go to the right place. I don’t think every single college or university necessarily facilitates this.)

      I think she is correct that she likely has some kind of practical knowledge from working in acting as a business that you would not get in college, which at the more prestigious levels is likely mostly theoretical rather than practical. You sort of have to cultivate business sense on your own — I don’t think educational systems actually teach that aspect of life.

    • liz says:

      She “could” go back to school, but how realistic is that for a full-time working mother of very young children? Parenting while working full-time is hard, particularly when you work odd hours (like on a TV series with 6am call times). Parenting while being a student is also hard. Trying to combine the two would be brutal and in her case, not financially necessary.

      If she really does regret her lack of education, she can always choose to go back when her kids are a little older – and lets them see her doing her homework while they do theirs. I went back recently and mine is in high school. Kiddo thinks it is hilarious to see my research materials spread out all over the coffee table and piled up on the living room floor. They are actually really good at proofreading and being an audience for presentation run-throughs.

      • Nicole says:

        I went back to school, albeit online, too. Working full-time, attending full-time, married with 2 small children. It took me 5 years, but I got it. My then 3-yo loved sitting at the table with me working on his “homework”.

    • WiththeAmerican says:

      Exactly. She doesn’t, she’s a republican and she doesn’t like to work much at all.

    • KrystinaJ says:

      Going to College when you’re a young adult is drastically different than going back as an older adult.
      I think she’s talking about not having experienced the young adult college version.

  2. Abby says:

    The story about rolling up to preschool blasting her song is funny.

    I think about some celebrities who went and got more education. Piper Perabo comes to mind. She can do it! It’s never too late.

  3. Watson says:

    “ The thing that I crave out of it wouldn’t look the way I pictured it because of who I am and how I came up.”

    This made me extremely sad for her. While it’s great that she is famous etc. that longing for a normal school experience is still there which she will never ever have. I went to school with someone who ended up B list famous in the year 2000’s and she got non stop stares, whispers and weird reactions. It’s not a normal existence.

  4. trillian says:

    It’s not too late. I am 46 and currently doing my Masters. I also work part time and have two kids. With her ressources, she could easily get an education if she really wanted.

    • whatever says:

      Yep, same. I’m in my forties, have three kids, and just started back at school this year to finish the bachelors I abandoned long ago. And I don’t have her financial resources. Or a spouse to help with the kids.

  5. LaUnicaAngelina says:

    That story about pulling up to the preschool was hilarious!

    I finally watched Younger a few months ago on Hulu. I really enjoyed it! The last season was not that great but it was a fun, light show and I enjoyed the fashion.

  6. Crooksandnannies says:

    Love her- but can’t stand HIMYF.

    Has anyone else seen it yet? There are two episodes out and this is not spoiler-y, but I am not crazy about the “wine mom” personality they gave Kim Cattrall/narrator, and so far the characters seem extremely one note. And I am no prude but the constant sexual comments from Valentina make me want to barf because they are not only try hard but not even funny and vaguely gross.

  7. Calypso says:

    Hilariously, this is the plotline of the character she played in Gossip Girl — a megafamous superstar who goes to NYU to get the “true college experience” so she doesn’t feel like she’s missing out by being a movie star, and it culminates in her doing a checklist of Things All College Students Should Experience and includes that infamous scene.
    But anyways, I think this is the experience she is referencing, more than the actual degree itself.

  8. Mina_Esq says:

    We had famous people at my school. After the initial novelty of it wears off, no one gives an eff. People with major political or business connections got more attention. She did miss out. I grew up and developed a lot in college. It’s not about parties and drinking (I didn’t touch alcohol until second year of law school). It’s everything. I developed my awareness of social issues in college. I decided on my political affiliations. It’s just generally living your best life, knowing that your primary purpose at the moment is to finish your degree. For most of us, it was the first time we had to fend for ourselves and organize our days without adult supervision.

  9. Mack says:

    What happened to Harvard?

    Anyone else remember in 2005 when she and her sister were promoting the online version of Harvard? Maybe she could pick that up again.

  10. jferber says:

    I’m honestly not trying to be mean, but I wondered if anyone thinks she got a smaller set of veneers, just a tad smaller, maybe? No shame, but just a question.

  11. The+Voice says:

    I can’t help it but I just love Hilary Duff. I love her style, her makeup, and her personality. I loved Younger but didn’t like her character. Sutton Foster was outstanding and I became a huge fan of Sutton’s. Hilary made this movie Beauty and the Briefcase and I love that movie! She pulls of sweet and sexy really well. I’m sure she can get an education if she wanted. It would be a commitment but maybe it’s something she’ll just want instead of actually do.