Lea Thompson Talks Movie Stardom Post-Babies: "It All Screeches to a Halt"

Lea Thompson -Getty-H 2019
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"I wanna do the research on this because, once you push a baby out, you can't be a movie star anymore," she told Justin Long on his podcast 'Life Is Short,' claiming she did "900 movies" before she had kids.

Lea Thompson spoke about how motherhood changed her career when she appeared on Justin Long's Life Is Short podcast, the latest episode of which bowed Tuesday.

Known for her role in the Back to the Future films, Thompson met her husband Howard Deutch on the set on the 1987 film Some Kind of Wonderful. She starred in the film, while Deutch directed. The couple now have two daughters, filmmaker Madelyn Deutch and actress Zoey Deutch.

Thompson revealed that her relationship with Deutch was not love at first sight. "He had a crush on me," she told Long about their time on the set of Some Kind of Wonderful. "But at this point, still, I was engaged to Dennis Quaid. I was still with him, so I kind of had to get out of that before. … But it was a crazy time. I mean, I did like 900 movies in a row."

"I did 900 movies in a row, but what happens is it all screeches to a halt when you have a baby," Thompson continued. "I wanna do the research on this because, once you push a baby out, you can't be a movie star anymore."

After Long asked if that was a scientific fact, the actress said that they should do the research. Thompson added that Meryl Streep was the only actress she could think of that remained a successful movie star after giving birth.

"You can adopt a baby," she said before listing Charlize Theron and Sandra Bullock as actresses that have continued successful film careers after adopting children.

"Once you actually create a placenta, you can't be a movie star anymore," Thompson said. "Does your face change that much? Or what happens?"

The actress claimed that she never had a starring role in a movie after giving birth to her daughters. "I did The Beverly Hillbillies," Thompson said. "After that I have never done a big feature."

She added that "luckily there's TV," where she found success as the titular character on Caroline in the City from 1995-1999.

Long later asked if Thompson enjoyed balancing life as a mother with starring on the sitcom.

"I found sitcoms to be very, very traumatically hard," she said about filming in front of a live audience. "Not so much so as some other actresses I've heard of that threw up every time. Just the process of doing a live play every week with the pressure of telling the jokes like boom-boom-boom and not being able to screw up, 'cause if you screw up, they get really mad at you."