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Robert Redford Walks Back Plans To Retire: 'I Think It Was A Mistake'

The screen legend now says he's not sure his new film "The Old Man & The Gun" will be his last.
Robert Redford attends the premiere of 'The Old Man and the Gun' at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Robert Redford attends the premiere of 'The Old Man and the Gun' at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Robert Redford might be taking his final bow ― again.

The screen legend is walking back his statement this summer about retiring from acting after the release of his upcoming crime comedy “The Old Man & the Gun.”

“I think it was a mistake to say that I was retiring because you never know,” Redford, 82, told People at the film’s premiere on Thursday.

“It did feel like it was time maybe, to concentrate on another category,” he added. 

Redford, of course, didn’t rule out a future in directing when he announced the David Lowery-helmed film, which also stars Casey Affleck and Sissy Spacek, would be his last in front of the camera. 

 Robert Redford attends premiere Of "Our Souls At Night."
 Robert Redford attends premiere Of "Our Souls At Night."

“Never say never, but I pretty well concluded that this would be it for me in terms of acting, and [I’ll] move towards retirement after this ’cause I’ve been doing it since I was 21,” he told Entertainment Weekly in August. “I thought, Well, that’s enough. And why not go out with something that’s very upbeat and positive?” 

Redford called his role as the real-life criminal and prison escape artist Forrest Tucker a “wonderful character to play at this point in my life.”

Robert Redford at the 1981 Oscars. 
Robert Redford at the 1981 Oscars. 

But now, the two-time Oscar winner said he regrets making the announcement, as it became the focus of the press tour of the film, which has been earning rave reviews since debuting at the Telluride Film Festival in August. 

“I shouldn’t have said that because it draws attention away from the film,” he told People. 

Critics, at least, don’t seem ready for Redford’s onscreen departure, praising his performance in the film as a “love letter to the cinematic legend.” 

One reporter described the film as a “valedictory lap on a career that began 60 years ago,” and another said it was the “perfect way for him to say goodbye.” 

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