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Christina Ricci says child acting was an escape from her 'horrendous childhood'

Christina Ricci says child acting was an escape from her 'horrendous childhood'

The 43-year-old actress has bravely spoken about her childhood, saying that she only felt 'valued' while on set

Christina Ricci has said that acting helped her ‘escape’ from her ‘horrendous childhood'.

The actor was just 11 years old when she became a household name, starring alongside Anjelica Huston and Christopher Lloyd in 1991’s The Addams Family.

It’s not been easy for Ricci though, who recently revealed that she only felt ‘valued’ as a child while working on set.

Christina Ricci has revealed that acting was an 'escape' as a child.
Sipa US / Alamy Stock Photo

In fact, the Sleepy Hollow star was so eager to get away from home that she began appearing in Saturday Night Live skits from the age of eight.

Ricci would appear in the spoof commercials on the beloved NBC show, parodying political scandals of the day.

It was this that helped her secure her first movie, Mermaids (1990), which won her a Young Artist award for Best Young Actress Supporting Role in a Motion Picture.

While the 1990 film, which also starred Cher and Winona Ryder, would be a critical and commercial success, Ricci’s most iconic role would happen just over a year later.

The Addams Family would not only propel her to international stardom, but her turn as kooky teenager Wednesday would also spark a sequel and, eventually, a Netflix series based on the gothic character.

While many were concerned about the impact of stardom on the youngster, Ricci viewed her career as an ‘escape’ and even said that ‘real life’ was worse than fame.

Ricci as Wednesday Addams.
Entertainment Pictures / Alamy Stock Photo

Unbeknownst to the public, Ricci had been abused as a child and had allegedly suffered at the hand of several family members.

Speaking about her difficult childhood, she told Entertainment Tonight: "When I first started, and still as an adult, this career has always been an escape for me."

The Yellowjackets actor continued: "All the little things that sort of are negative about the industry and the career, they’ve always been things that I’ve just been like, ‘Well, real life is worse.’"

According to Ricci, she enjoyed acting as it increasingly became an outlet for her.

She said that sets were often where she felt the safest as a child, explaining: "As a kid, it was an escape from, like, a horrendous childhood and just getting to go away - be in hotels and be on set and be with other adults and be valued."

The Yellowjackets actor has previously spoken about her traumatic childhood.
Everett Collection Inc / Alamy Stock Photo

It’s not the first time the actor has spoken about her horrific experiences as a child.

In another interview with The Sunday Times, she admitted to having a ‘fake favourite colour’ as a child which stopped her favourite possessions from being taken.

Being the youngest also helped her avoid harm, as she explained: "I grew up in a very chaotic home. I was the youngest child. I was adorable, and I learned very early on that my ability to be adorable could diffuse things or distract people; I don’t feel the need to go into much more detail."

Featured Image Credit: Alamy/ MediaPunch Inc/Entertainment Pictures

Topics: Celebrity, Film and TV