It’s not easy being a former Disney star. The baggage of one’s Disney past can weigh heavier on a person than many realize, and many, many former Disney actors have since spoken out about their time working with the entertainment giant and for the Disney Channel; Demi Lovato, Selena Gomez, Dove Cameron, and so many others have spoken out about their experience. And recently, Gomez shared some of the difficulties that have come with having a Disney start.
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“I definitely feel free of it,” Selena Gomez said while talking to Variety about her Disney past. “Sometimes I get triggered. It’s not that I’m ashamed of my past, it’s just that I’ve worked so hard to find my own way. I don’t want to be who I was. I want to be who I am.” On the release of Gomez’s new Apple+ documentary, Selena Gomez: My Mind and Me, the former Disney star says she finally feels more able to make choices that benefit her current direction and path.
The actress most recently found a lot of success with the Hulu series Only Murders in the Building with Steve Martin and Martin Short. During her Disney days, Gomez was most well known for her time on Wizards of Waverly Place, but she also acted in Disney Channel movies like Princess Protection Program.
Gomez concluded by saying, “Now I don’t feel like I’m lying to people. It’s not that I was lying…I was scared of what people would think or that people wouldn’t hire me.” She continued, on finding her security within her way, “Now I don’t think that way. I understand that if it doesn’t feel good, I need to step back and evaluate. Is this friendship giving me something? Is this project a really good one?”
Gomez is certainly not the first actor to comment on her Disney past. Austin Butler has also spoken about his experience before, after bagging the lead role in the film based on artist Elvis Presley’s life, though Butler shared a dissatisfaction with the roles he got to play on the Disney Channel as well. Nevertheless, seeing many of these beloved actors grow up and find their own voices is heartwarming.