Low-key lifestyle is 'everything' for Rachel McAdams

The London, Ont.-born actress, and Doctor Strange co-star, describes how living a balanced life in Toronto is key to her successful career.

Canadian Doctor Strange star says living in Toronto helps her be a better actress

Actress Rachel McAdams attends the Premiere of Disney and Marvel Studios' Doctor Strange on Oct. 20 in Hollywood, Calif. The Canadian actress credits her life out of the spotlight for being a better performer on screen. (Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

Keeping some distance from Hollywood has been the magic behind Rachel McAdams's success.

The London, Ont.-born actress is currently promoting her big budget superhero movie, Marvel's Doctor Strange with Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch, but she'd be quick to tell you she draws her power from keeping her feet on the ground.

"That's kind of everything for me and for my sanity," she told CBC's Eli Glasner. "It helps me be better in my work to just step away from [Hollywood]."

Rachel McAdams on finding balance

Arts and Entertainment

4 years ago
The star of Marvel's Doctor Strange describes how staying out of the spotlight makes her a better actress. 2:22

Doctor Strange sees McAdams play foil to the titular, mystical surgeon. And while taking a role in a superhero flick might seem like a departure (her most recent role as a pedophile-hunting reporter in Spotlight earned her an Academy Award nomination), it is evidence of the balance the actress seeks in everyday life.

International fame

McAdams's international fame took off after her portrayal of the fabulously evil high school tyrant Regina George in 2004's Mean Girls.  

Lacey Chabert, Lindsay Lohan, Rachel McAdams, and Amanda Seyfried in Mean Girls. (Paramount Pictures)
In the 13 years since, she has built an impressive career, complete with an Oscar nomination and Hollywood romances.

Despite her achievements, McAdams famously lives a low-key lifestyle in Toronto. She is sometimes spotted tooling around town on her bicycle.

For McAdams, who took a two-year hiatus from acting after pulling off a trio of blockbusters (Mean GirlsThe Notebook and The Wedding Crashers), it's about staying plugged into real life. 

"I feel like as an actor, if you're always working, you're never experiencing," she says. "I like to really get out there and experience life, and travel and see the world, and then put that on the screen."

Fans can see her on the big screen when Doctor Strange opens in theatres Nov. 4.

Watch Eli Glasner's interview with Rachel McAdams in the video above.

Actor Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Stephen Strange and actor Rachel McAdams as Christine Palmer appear in a scene from Marvel's Doctor Strange. (Jay Maidment/Marvel Studios)

With files from Eli Glasner