‘Ripley’ Star Dakota Fanning ‘Would Not Change One Thing’ About Her 24 Years in Acting

Dakota Fanning has been an actor for 24 of her 30 years alive, and upon speaking at the IndieWire Honors ceremony on Thursday, June 6, she says she “would not change one thing” about her long journey in Hollywood. Watch a video with her from our red carpet above.

“I’ve dedicated most of my life to being an actor. I am 24 years in at 30 years old, and I would not change one thing,” “Ripley” star Fanning said, thanking everyone who gave her opportunities along the way. She described the ebbs and flows of her career while acknowledging each moment also represents her childhood and entire life.

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Fanning kicked off the evening as the first award recipient of the night (host Alex Edelman joked she had a hard out at 8 p.m.). She dedicated her speech to her mother, Joy, the person who has seen her through her entire acting career, on set for her entire life until she was 18.

“She’s been by my side through anything and everything. She changed the course of her own life for me. She put her own dreams to the side so I could achieve mine,” Fanning said. “She spent countless hours on film sets in a camping chair, in fields in Connecticut, freezing in dark corners in studios. She allowed me to have my own independence and stand on my own two feet, to find my footing as a young woman and as an actor, but she was always there. There was never a day on set my entire life until I was 18 that she wasn’t there. I wonder if anyone can love me as much as she does. It’s so unreal. But I feel like if one day my children love me half as much as Elle [Fanning] and I love her, that will be enough.”

Fanning also thanked Netflix, her co-stars, series creator Steve Zaillian, her industry family who are “more than their titles,” and her real family, whom she said comprises a “group of very formidable women.”

Dakota Fanning at the IndieWire Honors at Citizen News on June 6, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.
Dakota Fanning at IndieWire Honors at Citizen News on June 6, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.Alberto Rodriguez for IndieWire

Fanning received the Performance Award from IndieWire Honors, and in speaking with IndieWire ahead of the event, said she reaches a “state of calm and flow” while performing that she can’t find anywhere else.

“It’s a place where — even just the simple thing of being on our phones all the time, and people are calling, people are texting, and people are, ‘Where are you? What are you doing? Can you do this? Can you do that?’ When I’m working, all that goes away,” Fanning said. “I don’t bring my phone on set. I don’t care if people know where I am. If they really need to get in touch with me, they know who to call, and I don’t have to worry about it. It’s a freedom that I feel that I have never felt really anywhere else in my life.”

Fanning’s foil on “Ripley” is played by Andrew Scott, who said most don’t realize how funny Fanning is. But he, too, praised her professionalism and her talent.

“She’s such a great colleague because she’s been around the block,” Scott wrote in a tribute for IndieWire. “She’s been around the biggest movie stars in the world, the biggest movie makers in the world, right from a young age. She has got a very healthy sense of professionalism: She knows when to have a really good laugh and when to spend time on something. She knows what you bring to the set and what you don’t need to bring to the set. She’s a hard worker. She’s incredibly prepared. You just feel very safe working with her.”

And watch the video of Fanning on IndieWire’s red carpet above.

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