Articles, Blog

Portia de Rossi on Why She Quit Acting

Hello. Hi. How are you? Pretty good, thanks. Great. How are you? Good to see you. Good to see you, too. [LAUGHTER] Yeah, I mean I saw you
this morning and stuff. Right. Yes. But the last time you
were on the program you surprised me for my birthday– Yay, I did. Which I was
completely surprised. You kept that a
secret for about– Five, six months. Six months. Yeah. And it was so hard too, because
she’s really observant, not nosy, just observant. [LAUGHTER] Right, exactly. So, yeah. It was really quite a
feat to pull that off. So, as you know, I’ve
talked about it a lot, and I’ll never stop
talking about it. Well, I am building the Ellen
DeGeneres Campus in Rwanda to save the mountain
gorillas in Rwanda. And so that is what
she’s doing, and– [APPLAUSE] You know, it’s kind of hard to
know what to get you, right? So, I thought that that
would be a good gift. It was a good gift,
because she remembered that Dian Fossey meant a lot
to me when I was growing up, and I wanted to live in Africa,
and help save the gorillas that like Dian did. Yeah. And then at one point
towards the end, closer to the birthday,
you kept saying you really have no idea what
I’m getting you, and I was like I had no idea. And Portia said, how
much is too much to spend for your birthday? [LAUGHTER] It was a little bit of a worry
’cause it’s not like a watch or– No. –something like that. It was sizable– No, we– –pledge that I made. So yeah. We have to raise $10 million
to build this foundation. Could be a little too much? Right, it’s amazing. And then we went, and
we’re leaving in a week to go to Africa. So we had to get
all these shots, because you can apparently die. [LAUGHTER] Yes. Yes, and the doctor listed all
the ways in which we could die. Right. Yes, and I’m like
happy birthday to me. Happy birthday! [LAUGHTER] We’re getting on a plane– $10 million please, on
a plane for 30 hours, and you can die
in all these ways. In all these different ways. We have to like
spray our clothes and soak them so things
don’t get to us– Eh, you’ll be fine. –and kill us and– It’ll be fine. It’s going to be fun. You’ll love it. You’ll love it. It will be fun. You’re gonna love it. Yes, I’m gonna love it. Yeah. It’s gonna be great. By the way, while I
was doing all of this, I also was planning
her birthday, and I need to say this
[LAUGHS] on the air. So it was up to me
to do the guest list, and I may have left a couple
of very important people off of the guest– it’s my fault. Good. That’s what I want to say. Thank you. Sorry, Jane Fonda. Yeah. [LAUGHTER] There were a couple
people that were so mad. My idol, and I forgot
her, Heidi Klum. You make the best
swimsuits ever. I’m so sorry. I know. There were a lot of
people that are coming up to me going I heard your
birthday party was good. And I’m like she did it. My fault. I didn’t know. And also, you aren’t a big fan
of doing press and talk shows, so thank you for being here. She really doesn’t. That’s why she
actually quit acting. You decided you didn’t want to
do anything more with acting and you got off of Scandal. Yes. So I was approaching
45 and I just kind of– Aging out. Aging out. Thank you. Yes. But I just kind of was
wondering, is there something that I could tackle
now that I’ve never done before that would be really
challenging and different? And I kind of knew what
acting would look like for me for the next 10, 20 years. So I decided to quit
and start a business. We’ll talk about
that in a minute. But you’re here because you
said you were going to quit, but then you didn’t. You went back to Arrested
Development and here you are. So I made this decision
about 18 months ago. Shonda Rhimes wrote
me off Scandal. It’s fine. I called Mitch Hurwitz,
who’s the creator of Arrested Development, and
I said, if there is a season five I won’t be
doing it because I quit acting. And he seemed
really understanding and he totally got it. We had a great
conversation, and then he wrote me into five episodes. Don’t know how it happened. But yes, I am on season five. So now you’re doing
Arrested Development. Twitch is a huge fan. Oh yeah? Honestly I’m really
excited that you’re coming back because Lindsay
and Tobias is so hilarious. And I can’t wait for
the season to start, but I also wanted to say
that the people from Arrested Development love
you all and know that you’re heading
off to a trip to Rwanda for such
a great cause. And in honor of
that they’re going to present a check to the
Ellen DeGeneres Wildlife Fund for $50,000. What? [APPLAUSE] Oh my God. Wow. Wow. Wow. Wow. That is so generous. I can’t believe that. No. What it means is they
want you to do season six. Wow. That’s amazing. Thank you so much everybody
from Arrested Development. That is incredible. The first eight episodes,
it’s really hilarious, too. That show is so smart. It’s brilliant. And whenever we go anywhere
people aren’t a huge fan, so I’m glad you did it. But when we come
back, we’re going to talk about why you quit
acting and what you’re doing. But the first eight
episodes of season five of Arrested Development will be
available May 29th on Netflix.


  1. animals don't lie Author

    Portia spends 50 grand on the sack that holds the rest of her walk about funds. And that is more than most people have ever seen, even if it's all in plastic, she's got enough plastic to choke a sea turtle, slowly

  2. animals don't lie Author

    Portia spends 50 grand on the sack that holds the rest of her walk about funds. And that is more than most people have ever seen, even if it's all in plastic, she's got enough plastic to choke a sea turtle, slowly

  3. L L Author

    God is incredible I had no idea that Ellen was thinking about leaving her show my son told me about 2 days ago I think it's amazing that she can live for the animals now at least soon enough

  4. Roxxanne Williams Author

    Hi everyone am a single mom of 2, I just started a little business where I sell clothes… so if anyone here have any USE CLOTHES that they no longer need plz comment here are send me and email at ([email protected]) I hope I didn't offend anyone by writing this but if I did am sorry.. thank you…

  5. Jay Author

    You’ve got to be kidding me… This thought just popped into my head:

    Ellen Degeneres… Ellen The Generous.

    Tell me it’s just a coincidence!!!

  6. Shivansh Pandey Author

    ellen is the talk show host AND producer and had no idea that a cheque is waiting for her foundation on her show. And that dude didn't showed that cheque untill ellen pointed at him to tell us all how Arrested Development team feels about Portia leaving. Then the look on ellen 's face . surprising !!

  7. Jane Rodr Author

    I'm 53 looking 28 my husband 36 looking 58 and till this day he looks at me exactly the way Ellen looks at Portia. I lv it. 🤣

  8. Science ain't fiction - that's what they say Author

    Ellen has a net worth of 700 million dollars but needs to 'raise' 10 million dollars and will get to name it after her.

  9. Liliana Gonzalez Author

    You know the person has an amazing heart if their loved ones choose to gift a charity foundation instead of a really fancy car or gem.

  10. Kevin Brett Author

    I live in South Africa and I think you chose the wrong location because it's not as dangerous as you make it sound ( I am Caucasian male)

  11. Bridge Author

    Hmm million dollars to save gorillas in Africa, who could be saved by nature..what about the starving children and towns of africa with no basic water and health facilities for humans..

  12. Garry Cosey Author

    This is awkward they don't have the connection that husband and wife has. They don't look intimate spiritually and emotionally they are superficial when they
    Talk. The only thing that is good is they are looking after gorilla.

  13. Flower Seed Author

    Well Ellen instead of helping gorillas in Rwanda,, there is people human beings that need help in there I mean it’s so great to help animals but with this big amount of money..🙄🙄🤗

  14. Almudena Carnero Author

    Alo pli. Permi esto hans hey baby tanz miy mit music tirol te. Gustara mola mogollón my. Gramola ok. Clara te call me espage. Ponla ok esto grc grc grc mundo. Alo saludos

  15. Nicky Keightley Author

    Welcome to Africa Ellen an Portia! We are a beautiful country and the people are so friendly. You will have a wonderful time! Bon voyage🎇🎆🎉

  16. Nicole Johnson Author

    Just hearing for the first time that you are helping the gorillas out I love you for that you are the greatest person in the world let me see people actually doing something for them you are greatest if I ever win the lottery would love to do something like that for the gorillas also love them love you


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