All anybody could talk about in Hollywood during the ’90s was a young Winona Ryder. She had appeared in films like Beetlejuice and Edward Scissorhands all the while dating the equally brooding and famous Johnny Depp. The couple met in 1989 and were engaged after just five months. Four years later — during the height of toxic tabloid culture — they split to intense public scrutiny.
In a new interview with Harper’s Bazaar, the actress briefly addressed the breakup explaining it was like living the real life version of her role in the 1999 psychological drama, Girl, Interrupted. The character in the film was rushed to a psychiatric hospital after she attempted suicide. For Ryder, she credits a therapist for saving her mental health.
“I remember, I was playing this character who ends up getting tortured in a Chilean prison,” Ryder told the publication. “I would look at these fake bruises and cuts on my face [from the shoot], and I would struggle to see myself as this little girl. ‘Would you be treating this girl like you’re treating yourself?’ I remember looking at myself and saying, ‘This is what I’m doing to myself inside.’ Because I just wasn’t taking care of myself.”
The actress also received advice from Michelle Pfeiffer who she starred alongside in the film Age of Innocence that same year. “I remember Michelle being like, ‘This is going to pass,’ but I couldn’t hear it.”
Ryder is now 50 and recently starred in the hit television show Stranger of Things. The notoriously private actress declined to clarify further on the split. “There’s this part of me that’s very private. I have such, like, a place in my heart for those days. But for someone younger who grew up with social media, it’s hard to describe.”
The 50-year-old is now linked to long-time boyfriend Scott Mackinlay Hahn whom she has dated for over a decade.