Robert Redford Doesn't Want Possible Retirement to Distract From 'The Old Man & the Gun'

Robert Redford attends the "The Old Man & The Gun" premiere - Getty-H 2018
Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

The 82-year-old seemed to backtrack on a comment he made in August about retiring from acting.

Robert Redford has been adamant about his plans to retire from acting after The Old Man & the Gun, but at the film's New York premiere on Thursday night, he appeared to have changed his mind.

"I think it was a mistake to say that this was my last film because I think I just could've quietly slipped out of acting and into a new category," Redford said, adding that he thinks he inadvertently drew "too much attention" to The Old Man & the Gun being his last film, when he'd rather the focus be "on the rest of the cast and the story."

Redford is particularly determined to spotlight the film's writer-director David Lowery. He said on Thursday that his only motives for becoming a producer were to support Lowery and "prevent outside people from interfering so [Lowery] could make the film he wanted to make." 

In a Q&A session following a screening of The Old Man & the Gun, Redford reiterated this sentiment. 

"This is not about my retirement," he told the audience. "That got too much attention. It's not about that. Because if I'm going to retire, I'm going to go quietly into a new direction and not talk about it. So I was concerned that was getting too much attention and taking away from what the real value of the story was, which is, this is David's concept."

By new direction, Redford said he means producing and directing.