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A version of this story first appeared in the Aug. 21 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
Diablo Cody is known for her screenplays (Juno, Young Adult and Showtime’s United States of Tara), but it turns out her directing foray did not leave her with the same sense of success: She won’t be doing it again — ever. Cody helmed 2013’s Paradise, which was released on VOD and critically panned.
“I am retired from directing,” she tells THR, adding: “I don’t think I possess the leadership qualities required to be a director.”
Cody most recently wrote the script for Ricki and the Flash, which stars Meryl Streep as an aging rocker who returns home to her family to discover that they haven’t forgiven her for abandoning them to chase her dreams. The film opened the weekend of Aug. 7, earning $6.6 million it its domestic debut.
Cody tells THR that the idea of mothers being shamed for going after their career ambitions weighed heavily on her while she was writing the script: “I have a creative job and I’m very passionate about it, and it is time-consuming. Are my kids going to see that as something admirable or are they going to resent me for it? I don’t know what the answer is, although I’ve talked to a lot of older parents who have told me that I should probably steel myself for disappointment.”
Cody will keep busy enough without directing gigs on her plate. She’s writing Sony’s Barbie movie and an Amazon series with Louis C.K. and Tig Notaro (the pilot shoots in a few weeks). Says Cody: “I’m just going to stay home in my sweatpants from now on.”
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