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The Emmy-nominated actress told The Hollywood Reporter that it took years for her career to really take off. It wasn’t until she landed the role of Sophia on Orange Is the New Black, that her career really accelerated:

“When I moved to New York City in 1993, I thought I would be a superstar in two, three years tops. That didn’t quite happen,” she said. After some T.V. and movie credits, she said she was ready to throw in the towel. “It was a devastating realization. It’s like, OK, you’re 40 years old. Maybe that’s all God wanted for me in this business. Maybe this is all I’m supposed to do. Now I should just listen to what the universe seems to be telling me about this acting thing and try something else. Then I got this audition. It turns out that God had a different plan.”

Keep scrolling for a list of more actors and actress who were about to give up, but they kept on pushing…

Trevor Jackson

Trevor Jackson Freeform Summit

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The Grown-ish star was about to be done with acting but his role on season two of ABC’s American Crime changed his mind. He went on BET‘s Black Coffee and explained:

“I remember I was going to quit acting at one point, and then I did American Crime, and I literally was watching John Ridley work, Regina King, Timothy Hutton, Andre 3000 and I was re-inspired. Even off screen [I was inspired], and I wanted to start directing.”

Don’t Quit: These Actors & Actresses Almost Gave Up On Their Dream  was originally published on

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