Monday Motivation: 10 Quotes by Actress Blythe Danner

Blythe Danner, Photo: ©PATRICKMCMULLAN
Blythe Danner, Photo: ©PATRICKMCMULLAN

This Monday, we’re searching for motivation in the wise words of Amagansett star of stage, film and television Blythe Danner.

Born in Philadelphia in 1943, Danner began her acting career in the Theater Company of Boston’s production of The Glass Menagerie in 1965. She made her Off-Broadway debut (Summertree) and Broadway debut (Cyrano de Bergerac) in 1968. Two short years later, she received her Tony Award for Butterflies Are Free. Following her award win, she received several additional Tony nominations for her roles in Betrayal, A Streetcar Named Desire and Follies.

Danner premiered on the silver screen in the 1972 psychological thriller To Kill a Clown, alongside fellow East Ender Alan Alda. She went on to star in films such as Lovin’ Molly, Futureworld, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Meet the Parents, The Last Kiss, I’ll See You in My Dreams and last year’s The Tomorrow Man. In local theater, she appeared in Guild Hall’s Tonight at 8:30: An Evening of Three Light and Musical Comedies in 2013 and has continued to support the East Hampton institution.

Her television appearances, largely made up of TV movies, are as numerous as her film and theater projects. Danner’s Emmy-nominated appearances include the series Will & Grace, in which she has a recurring role alongside Hamptonite Debra Messing, and the films We Were the Mulvaneys and Back When We Were Grownups. She won the 2005 and 2006 Emmy Awards for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Isabelle Huffstodt in the series Huff.

In addition to her countless acting roles, Danner is also well-known as the mother of actress, author and Goop founder Gwyneth Paltrow. The mother-daughter duo are very close, so close that Danner moved next door to Gwyneth’s Amagansett home in 2008. They co-starred in the 1992 TV movie Cruel Doubt and again in the 2003 film Sylvia.

Now, we ask for Blythe Danner’s sagely wisdom to help us start the week on the right foot and with the right mindset. Here are 10 of her most insightful and motivational quotes.

“I don’t give my advice unless it’s asked for.”

“My theory in anything you do is to keep exploring, keep digging deeper to find new stuff.”

“Whether you’re on TV or on the stage, you have to work hard to stay fresh, real and full of energy. You can’t settle back. You always have to stay on your toes.”

“I’ve kept my sanity in this business by trying out for a role and then going home and trying to forget about it.”

“That’s what’s so wonderful about being in this business because you’re constantly surprised. You have to be up for anything.”

“I don’t read critics, and I don’t care what they say. You can’t let them steal your soul. You do what the director and production is committed to doing. I just think it’s terrible that critics have the power to keep people away from a good production.”

“You cannot be the perfect wife, the perfect mother and the perfect actor all at the same time.”

“I feel that it’s our children who do give us hope, because they are the ones who are going to save the world.”

“We all have an obligation as citizens of this earth to leave the world a healthier, cleaner and better place for our children and future generations.”

“My feeling is that if there are that many billions of stars, maybe someone is saying exactly what I’m saying at this moment. I don’t know. It’s not something I’m obsessed by or think about all the time, but I’m certainly open to thinking it could be.”

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