Christina Applegate Says SAG Awards Will Likely Be Her 'Last Awards Show as an Actor' amid MS Diagnosis

Christina Applegate
Christina Applegate

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Christina Applegate is looking ahead to the upcoming Screen Actors Guild Awards with bittersweet emotions.

The Dead to Me actress, who confirmed her MS diagnosis in 2021, revealed that the upcoming SAG Awards will most likely be her last as she continues to deal with the impacts from the disease.

"It's my last awards show as an actor probably, so it's kind of a big deal," Applegate, 51, told The Los Angeles Times in an interview published on Tuesday.

She added, "Right now, I couldn't imagine getting up at 5 a.m. and spending 12 to 14 hours on a set; I don't have that in me at this moment."

Applegate is nominated for outstanding performance by a female actor in a comedy series for her role as Jen Harding in the Netflix comedy. The nod marks her sixth-ever SAG nomination.

Though acting is no longer on her radar, Applegate does have her next career move in mind: "Doing a s— ton of voice-overs to make some cash to make sure that my daughter's fed and we're homed," she told the LA Times.

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Applegate's remarks come nearly two years after she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. At the time, she was filming Dead to Me's third and final season, which forced her to take a hiatus from taping and undergo treatment.

Speaking to The Times, the actress saluted the "incredible" crew, the series' showrunner, and her costars, saying they were "Jen and Judy combined into a human, in the most perfect and beautiful way possible" — a reference to the close friendship between her character and that of Linda Cardellini, who portrays Judy Hale.

"I was a wreck every day," confessed Applegate, "but most of that wreck would take place in my trailer by myself. But there were times I'd break down on set and be like, 'I can't, we have to take a break, I need a half-hour,' and everyone was so loving that it was OK."

Applegate also revealed how difficult it was to watch the third season once it had been released on Netflix.

"I don't like seeing myself struggling," she said. "Also, I gained 40 pounds because of inactivity and medications, and I didn't look like myself, and I didn't feel like myself." She watched alone, stopping periodically when it became too painful. "At some point I was able to distance myself from my own ego, and realize what a beautiful piece of television it was. All the scenes I wasn't in were so much fun to see and experience for the very first time."

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In November, Applegate reflected on filming the series during an interview with Variety, revealing it was "as hard as you would possibly think it would be."

"It's about finding what I'm capable of doing," she said of her acting future. "I'm so new in this right now. It takes time to kind of figure out this disease, and figure out what's bringing on symptoms. I'm just a newbie to all of this. So I'm trying to figure it out — and I'm also in mourning for the person who I was. I have to find a place that's as loving as my set was, where they won't think I'm a diva by saying, 'Hey, I can only work five hours.'"

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The actress, who received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Nov. 14, explained that she's seeking "a place that will allow me to [work five hours] if I'm not the star," and that starring in something might be off the table in the future.

"There's no way I could do the work that I just came off again. I mean, it was so hard," she said, adding that her focus nowadays is her family, specifically her 12-year-old daughter Sadie Grace LeNoble, who she shares with husband Martyn LeNoble.

"I'm pretty convinced that this was it, you know? But who knows — I'm probably gonna get real bored of being in my room. I'd like to develop stuff, I'd like to produce stuff," she added. "I've got a lot of ideas in my mind, and I just need to get them executed."

The 29th Screen Actors Guild Awards will be held on Sunday, Feb. 26.