Jane Fonda says being 'closer to death' doesn't really bother her

'The fact that I'm still alive and working, wow, who cares if I don't have my old joints?'
April 27, 2022 3:50 p.m. EST
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We think we can all agree that Jane Fonda has aged like a fine wine. Except she’s given up wine and all alcohol at age 84, and in a new interview, the Grace & Frankie star gave a very honest and blunt explanation for how she finds life at this age.

“I’m super-conscious that I’m closer to death, and it doesn’t really bother me that much,” she told CBS Sunday Morning.

“What bothers me is that my body is, you know, basically not mine!” she continued. “My knees are not mine, my hips are not mine, my shoulder’s not mine. You’re looking at somebody who’s only me from [the neck] up.”

It’s hard to think of Jane that way considering she's been breathtakingly beautiful for 60 years on screen, from her iconic roles in Barefoot In The Park, The China Syndrome and 9 to 5 to more recent movies like Monster In Law and Georgia Rule. But we of course cannot forget how she was the figurehead of the 1980s aerobics exercise craze, releasing several at-home workout programs that launched a thousand leotards. Raise your hand if your mom/aunt/grandma had these VHS tapes. *raises all the hands*

Yet Jane doesn’t look back with nostalgia too frequently and, as she tells CBS Sunday Morning, she has a very keep-calm-and-carry-on attitude when it comes to aging into her twilight years.

"The fact is if you're alive and relatively healthy at an older — I mean, I'm almost 85," she told the outlet. "The fact that I'm still alive and working, wow, who cares if I don't have my old joints? And I can't ski or bike or run anymore? Enh. You know, you can be really old at 60, and you can be really young at 85. Health!"

Speaking of “Health!” Jane admitted that, due to age, she has also given up drinking alcohol because of the changing ways it affects her at this age. “It's because even with one drink, like, if I had a martini tonight, I would be at half-mast tomorrow," she revealed. 

"Now, that wasn't true when I was younger. But as you get older, I think alcohol affects you differently. And I only have so many tomorrows left. I don't want to be at half-mast for any of them!"

Despite the changes to her body, Jane has never shown signs of slowing down. A consummate political activist for 50 years, last year she continued her fight by joining the Ojibwe protests in Northern Minnesota against an Enbridge Line 3 replacement pipeline coming from Canada, citing damaging environmental consequences.

“Enbridge seeks to build a new pipeline corridor through untouched wetlands and the treaty territory of Anishinaabe peoples, through the Mississippi River headwaters to the shore of Lake Superior,” she said on Instagram at the time. “We will be at the rivers that are being threatened by Line 3 over the next few days gathering to pray and send a message to Enbridge that water is life.”

Her life’s work of fighting for what’s right has always been a Jane Fonda modus operandi. If you know your Fonda history, you know she shocked polite American society and caused international political controversies in the '70s for her opposition to the Vietnam War, earning her the problematic nickname “Hanoi Jane.”

She was infamously photographed sitting atop an anti-aircraft missile, and her famous 1970 fist-raising mugshot from her arrest on suspicion of bringing drugs from Canada across the border became an iconic visual of feminist revolution.

On top of continuing to work well into her 80s, she is also still modeling. Back in October, she graced the cover of the Polish edition of Vogue, a full 62 years after she first graced the US Vogue cover in 1959.

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