Severance Director Ben Stiller Opens Up About Why He Stopped Acting

Severance director, Ben Stiller, opens up about why he largely stopped acting since 2017 and reveals it was to focus on directing and producing.

Severance director, Ben Stiller, has opened up about he why stopped acting. Stiller is American actor, comedian, producer, and director, who has starred in some of the highest-grossing comedic films since 1990. He has appeared in such works as Zoolander, the Meet The Parents trilogy, the Night At The Museum trilogy, and The Cable Guy. However, since 2017, he has not starred in any films and only had minor cameos in such films as Hubie Halloween. While he hasn’t been acting, he has directed and produced several projects, the latest being Severance.

Severance is an American thriller series that premiered on Apple TV on February 18, 2022. The series, directed and produced by Stiller, stars Christopher Walken, John Turturro, Adam Scott, and Patricia Arquette. Severance follows Mark (Scott) and his team of office workers at Lumon Industries who have undergone a procedure called “severance” to separate their work memories from their personal memories. The employees don’t have much knowledge of what their work actually consists of, but this changes when a former colleague resurfaces in Mark’s life and leads him to dig deeper into Lumon.

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In an interview with Yahoo!, Severance director, Stiller, opened up about why he stopped acting, and it coincidentally ties in with work-life balance. Stiller admitted that it wasn’t something that he intentionally did, but merely that he became more interested in exploring directing and producing. For a period of time, he both starred in and directed several projects, but due to the workload, decided he could only do one at a time. That led to him shifting more towards directing and producing, however, he is getting to a point where he misses acting and looks forward to returning to it one day. Check out his statement below:


It’s been a few years [since I acted]. It hasn’t been totally intentional except I really do enjoy directing and producing. I am getting to the point now where I am kind of missing acting a little bit and would like to figure out how to do something again. But for a long time I would direct and act in the same project over the years and I really decided recently, or probably about five years ago, that I didn’t wanna do that anymore and just do one thing at a time. And lately I’ve been exploring projects [and] making things as a director and producer, and I’ve been very happy with that. But I really do look forward to acting again one of these days.


Ben Stiller in Secret Life of Walter Mitty

Stiller’s shift in interest is understandable and simply points to the fact that maintaining a work-life balance often means choosing a single primary focus. However, that doesn’t mean that Stiller hasn’t been missed in the five years that he has strayed from the big screen. His comedic skills were on point, and viewers enjoyed his rapport with other big names in comedy, such as Owen Wilson and Will Ferrell. His interest in returning to acting still raises hope for his fans that they will see him on the big screen again. Already, Stiller has expressed interest in a Mystery Men 2, indicating that there are projects with potential and fanbases that could easily return him to acting.


Even if Stiller’s return to acting is uncertain, it seems he has found success with his directing. While Severance has just premiered on Apple TV, it has already been receiving positive reception. The series is a bit outside of Stiller’s usual work with its thrilling and dramatic mind-bending twist on the topic of work-life balance. However, the series has boasted a strong debut with its unique premise and by tackling the current state of employment. Severance‘s all-star cast and Stiller’s directing, meanwhile, greatly enhance the show’s appeal, as well. Stiller’s break from acting hasn’t damaged his career at all as it has allowed him succeed with projects such as Severance and as he would surely be welcomed back warmly should he ever return to acting.


More: Severance: Why Lumon’s Severance Departments Are So Small

Source: Yahoo!

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