By Maia Venuti
On Oct. 28, renowned actress Shelley Duvall, best-known for her roles as Wendy in “The Shining” (1980), and Olive Oyl in “Popeye” (1981), announced her return to acting after a two-decade hiatus.
She will be starring in an independent horror-thriller film called “The Forest Hills,” which has no official release date yet.
There is a lot of excitement surrounding the fact that her first film after twenty years is a horror film, given how she is the star of one of the most famous horror films of all time. She will be playing the role of the main character’s mother, serving as his inner voice throughout the film.
Duvall’s return to acting was an unexpected but greatly welcomed surprise to all her fans. She left Hollywood in 2002 and moved to a very small town close to the Texas border. In the past twenty years, the public has neither seen nor heard from Duvall with the exceptions of a controversial 2016 Dr. Phil interview and an article from the Hollywood Reporter released in 2021, which conducted a thorough interview with Duvall.
While it is not specifically known why Duvall left Hollywood, there are many factors that contributed to her hiatus. Duvall’s life and acting career was not an easy one, as she suffered life altering abuses from director Stanley Kubrick on the set of “The Shining.”
In her interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Duvall recalls filming the scene of Jack chasing her throughout the resort for three weeks, and how she would have to wake up every morning and cry for more than 15 hours straight, just to go to bed and do it all the next day. Duvall was also ignored by nearly everyone on set for the entire 56 weeks of filming by the orders of Kubrick. Duvall said that every day of the 13-month long shoot she cried and was incredibly depressed and lonely the entire time.
Duvall’s return to acting is a monumental development in the world of horror, and a powerful one at that.