Emma Roberts Says ‘Fame’ Isn’t ‘My Goal’ After Watching Aunt Julia Roberts, Nepo Baby Critics Are Harder on Women: ‘Why Is No One Calling Out George Clooney?’

Emma Roberts appeared on the “Table for Two” podcast (via Vanity Fair) and was asked whether becoming a “massive movie star” was a priority for her when she decided to follow in the career footsteps of her father, Eric Roberts, and her aunt, Julia Roberts. Not quite. Emma said that watching her aunt become an A-list superstar as a kid showed her how scary that level of fame can be.

“I saw very up close what that really looks like,” Roberts said. “It’s obviously fun and it’s great, but there is a part of it that’s really scary. So I’ve wanted to kind of carve my own path. … Fame has never been the goal, because fame at a certain level is kind of scary.”

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“Even in my later teens, I was like, I never want my fame to outweigh my work,” she continued. “Because there’s nothing scarier to me than being so famous that you’re never left alone, but also you’re not getting good jobs. And that was kind of happening to a lot of people when I was in my teens and early 20s. I never wanted that to happen to me.”

As the relative of two famous actors, Roberts also often has to contend with nepo-baby accusations in her career. She joins the likes of Gwyneth Paltrow and Dakota Johnson in pushing back against the term.

“There’s two sides of the coin,” Roberts said. “People like to say, you know, you have a leg up because you have family in the industry. But then the other side to that is, you have to prove yourself more. Also, if people don’t have good experiences with other people in your family, then you’ll never get a chance.”

“Everybody loves the kind of overnight-success story. And so if you’re kind of not the girl from the middle of nowhere that broke into Hollywood, there’s kind of an eye roll of like, ‘Well, your dad was this,’” she continued. “I always joke, ‘Why is no one calling out George Clooney for being a nepo baby? [His aunt] Rosemary Clooney was an icon.’ I feel like young girls get it harder with the nepo-baby thing. Like, I don’t really see people calling out sons of famous actors, not that they should be called out.”

Roberts concluded her argument by saying that people who criticize nepo babys “only see your wins, because they only see when you’re on the poster of a movie — they don’t see all the rejection along the way. That’s why I’m always very open about things I’ve auditioned for and haven’t gotten the part for.”

Gwyneth Paltrow, daughter of actor Blythe Danner and director and producer Bruce Paltrow,” made headlines last year for saying the term “nepo baby” is an “ugly moniker,” while Dakota Johnson slammed the term earlier this year.

“When that first started I found it to be incredibly annoying and boring,” Johnson said about the nepo baby discourse. “If you’re a journalist, then write about something else. That’s just lame.”

Listen to Roberts’ full appearance on the “Table for Two” podcast here.

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