For more than a decade, Emma Stone's career wasn't much different from that of her character, Mia, in the 2016 film "La La Land. "
In ninth grade, just before leaving high school for Los Angeles, Stone had devised a career plan called "Project Hollywood." As she tried to put it into practice, she found that acting wasn't paying the bills. To make ends meet, the teenage Stone took a side job working at a dog-biscuit bakery.
Fast forward to 2017, and Stone, already one of the Hollywood's critically acclaimed ingenues, has an Oscar win on her resume.
Her best career advice for those with big dreams? Don't give up when you encounter obstacles.
"If you're going through hell, keep going," Stone tells ABC, citing a quote attributed to Winston Churchill. "Just keep going."
Facing an uncertain future as a young actress, Stone had to learn to cope with anxiety, extreme shyness and even a phobia, she tells The Hollywood Reporter. As a child, Stone broke both arms falling off a balance beam, so she hates to be lifted up into the air. But in both 2012's "The Amazing Spider-Man" and "La La Land," her character is often swept off the ground. Stone has coped, she says, by channeling her anxiety into hobbies such as baking.
While getting the Academy Award is an incredible achievement, it is not a panacea. Stone knows she has more progress to make.
"I still have a lot of growing and learning and work to do," the actress said while accepting her trophy. "And this [Oscar statue] is a really beautiful symbol to continue on that journey."
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