Amanda Seyfried reveals how life in the spotlight has lead to terrifying panic attacks

The Oscar-nominee explained it ‘feels like life or death’

Amanda Seyfried attends the 'First Reformed' photocall during the 74th Venice Film Festival on August 31, 2017 in Venice, Italy
(Image credit: Photo by Elisabetta A. Villa/WireImage via Getty)

Amanda Seyfried may continually captivate us on screen with her impressive performances in everything from Mamma Mia! to Mank, but it seems the price of fame has been huge for the talented actor.

Amanda has shared that despite her success, which has seen her nominated for Best Supporting Actress at the Oscars 2021, life in the limelight has taken a truly terrifying toll on her health. We may often settle down with our best pillow and blanket to watch her amazing performances on-screen, but behind-the-scenes Amanda battles panic attacks brought on by the pressure of fame. 

Speaking on Sunday Today with Willie Geist, the Mank star bravely described her heart-wrenching experiences. 

"It feels like life or death. That's what a panic attack is, really. Your body just goes into fight or flight," Amanda explained. “The endorphin rush and the dump that happens after the panic attack is so extraordinary. 

“You just feel so relieved and your body is just kind of recovered in a way. It's so bizarre because it's physiological, but it starts in your head.”

“It never goes away,” she added. 

Whilst Amanda has thousands of fans across the world, she went on to share how her anxiety often stems from people's incorrect perception that she had a special life due to her fame, when in fact she is just a “normal” person. 

“I do not have someone waking me up with breakfast in bed, and I'm not chauffeured around,” she said. “And every time I meet someone new, I'm just so desperate for them to understand that you can talk to me. I wanna connect like everybody else, because I am like everybody else.”

Perhaps inspired by her experiences, Amanda seems to have taken steps to ensure a level of protection for her family from the adverse effects of fame. 

She and her actor husband Thomas Sadoski live on a working farm in the Catskills of Upstate New York with their two children, four-year-old Nina and a seven-month-old son who made a particularly adorable surprise appearance as she wrapped up the interview.

For Amanda, the rural location of their family home is perfect for keeping them “grounded”.

“It was very conscious,” she declared. “I've always wanted to live on a farm. I just need to feel grounded somewhere that I can trust will always be there.”