Anna Faris Opens Up About Nearly Leaving Acting After Quitting CBS' Mom, And What Brought Her Back

Christy (Anna Faris) in Mom
(Image credit: CBS)

Anna Faris’ departure from Mom shocked many fans as there was no forewarning. She eased the sting by explaining she was leaving for better opportunities. Despite there being no bad blood, losing the series lead was reportedly a nightmare for her former cast and crew. Her early exit was more painful because the CBS sitcom was canceled before she could return. Since leaving the show, Faris hasn’t spoken much about her exit. However, there might’ve been more to her quitting Mom as the Scary Movie alum opened up about nearly leaving her acting career after the show, and what brought her back to work.

The comedic actress kept her promise to do more projects as she currently stars in the comedy The Estate, which is playing in theaters. But starring in her first leading film role in four years almost didn’t happen. After being in Hollywood for two decades, Faris was ready to walk away from the fame and success following her seven-season tenure on the CBS sitcom Mom. The weekly sitcom grind had worn away the TV and film actress’ love for the craft. Upon quitting the hit series, she opened up to People about taking stock of her Hollywood success.  

I was like, 'Do I have enough [money] to retire?'

It’s hard to imagine that Faris contemplated retiring from Hollywood at such a young age. Of course, she wouldn’t be the first to leave behind the film and TV sets for a quieter existence (i.e., fellow actress Cameron Diaz before unretiring for a new movie). I'd assume working and auditioning constantly and living on sets for several months would make anyone reassess their decades-long career. At least, she reviewed her finances before making such a life-changing decision.

The Mom star was tired of "feeling competitive, feeling comparative" following her breakthrough role as Cindy Campbell in Scary Movie. The problem even filtered over to her romantic relationships, including her ex-husband Chris Pratt. So, leaving the show without another job lined up was different for the 45-year-old actress after hopping from project to project for two decades straight. In her words:

It felt like the first time that I didn't have my foot on the gas. I really started to think about where I wanted to go in terms of [my] career. And I definitely was enjoying all that free time.

So, Faris needed the break from the Hollywood grind. It seemed like she was more preoccupied with the next thing than taking in the fruits of her labor, especially since she starred in over 30 film and TV projects, I'd think it left her burnt out. The actress enjoyed her time off, and it was well deserved. She was relieved from the Hollywood pressure for the first time in her career. Thankfully, the Overboard star didn’t retire but decided to reassess her acting career after receiving The Estate script.

On Mom, which was really rewarding in a very different way, everything is very precise. Sitcoms are incredibly surgical, and there's not room for that kind of play. Everything is very choreographed. The dialogue is incredibly precise. And so from my first project out from that experience, to me it felt just completely rejuvenating. It made me really excited, and I hadn't felt that way in a while.

Maybe this means viewers will get more movies and TV series from the comedic actress. The break appeared to work for her life as she spoke kindly about her relationship with Pratt and his wife, Katherine Schwarzenegger. While Anna Faris isn’t tied to any new TV series, there are upcoming TV premieres to check out for the remainder of 2022.

Adreon Patterson
News Writer

A boy from Greenwood, South Carolina. CinemaBlend Contributor. An animation enthusiast (anime, US and international films, television). Freelance writer, designer and artist. Lover of music (US and international).