When you think of the name Adam Sandler, the first thing that might come to mind is the energetic class clown pictured in classic comedies like Happy Gilmore and Water Boy. But the reality is, Sandler is 56, and he’s settling in very well.
Speaking to AARP Magazine in a new interview, the father of two opened up about how ageing has changed him—both emotionally and physically.
“I’m getting older. That doesn’t mean I feel old,” he explained. “I mean, I do when I’m on the basketball court and an 18-year-old kid hears I’m 56 and says, ‘Wow! I thought you were younger than that!’ But I like my age, and it’s fun to play my age.”
Sandler continued, adding that ageing is “freeing.” “I don’t have to be true to anything other than what I look like and what I think and what I do in life,” he said. That authenticity has even trickled down to his eating and exercise habits. “There hasn’t been one movie where I’ve stayed the same weight throughout a three-month shoot. I used to worry about it. Now I’m OK. Let’s have a prime rib, man!” he said.
He also admitted to feeling a lot “calmer” these days, which he attributed partially to seeing a therapist. “He’s given me a plan. Sometimes just holding in a sentence, taking a beat for a minute before saying something stupid. When I do that, I realise it wasn’t that important to say it in the first place, and I don’t spend two hours making everyone around me feel weirdness for no reason,” he explained.
“I used to go nuts,” he recalled. “I had a quick temper, quick reactions. I made a lot of dumb mistakes and said a lot of stupid things. Looking back on relationships, I could be an ass. I was selfish.”
Despite making these realisations, he still gets anxious from time to time—just like the rest of us. “If things are taking too long, if I’m waiting downstairs for my wife to get dressed, I’m, like, ‘What the hell’s going on up there?’” he explained. “You see me and go, ‘Jeez, how many moods is this guy going to have today?’ But in general, I’ve gotten much better at life as I’ve gotten older.”
As for the rest of his career and beyond, Adam Sandler hopes fans will stick with him through his ongoing evolution.“I want people to continue to enjoy what I’m doing,” he told AARP. “I hope they’ve had a good time with my movies, with what we’ve given them and, whether you’ve liked me or not, appreciate that I’ve tried my best.”