What happened to Jack Nicholson?

Jack Nicholson is as legendary as they come.

The most nominated male actor in Oscars history, star of iconic films in every decade from the 1960s to the 2010s, and famous for his party-heavy lifestyle, Nicholson is perhaps one of Hollywood’s biggest and most enduring stars.

But you may have realised you haven’t heard much from the actor in the last few years. After decades dominating the headlines for both his professional accolades and his personal life, there’s been little to no news about the actor.

Read on to find out why. 

READ MORE: What happened between Jude Law, Sienna Miller and the nanny?

What happened to Jack Nicholson?

Jack Nicholson retired from acting in 2010, partially due to his reported dementia diagnosis.

The star has become somewhat of a recluse, shying away from the public eye in search of a more calm and private life in his old age.

In 2013, it was reported this was due to his “memory loss”.

In January, friends of the actor voiced concerns about his health, telling RadarOnline he “doesn’t leave his house anymore”.

Nicholson’s last film role was in the 2010 rom-com How Do You Know?, and aside from a special SNL cameo in 2015, he hasn’t appeared in anything since.

What is Jack Nicholson doing now?

In a 2013 interview, Nicholson said he did not consider himself retired, but that he was now less driven to “be out there anymore”.

He reportedly was approached to appear in The Shining sequel Doctor Sleep and sci-fi flick Ready Player One, but turned both offers down.

The Shining actor made headlines in April 2023 when he was spotted in public for the first time in 18 months, sitting courtside at a Lakers basketball game with his son.

READ MORE: What happened to Emilio Estevez and why did he quit acting?

Jack Nicholson

He’s known for being a massive fan of the LA-based team, famously adjusting his shooting schedules and personal meetings to keep himself free to catch every big game.

Other than that, what Nicholson has been up to is a complete mystery.

What was Jack Nicholson’s last movie?

In 2010, the actor appeared in the Reese Witherspoon comedy How Do You Know? in a supporting role – it’s unclear whether he knew this would be his last role. The film has a 31 per cent rating on Rotten Tomatoes and received mixed or average reviews from critics.

Nicholson was paid $USD12 million (approx. $17 million) for the part, more than the other two stars, Owen Wilson and Paul Rudd, who had bigger roles.

In 2014, the Los Angeles Times listed the film as one of the most expensive box office flops of all time.

Before that, his previous films included 2007’s The Bucket List with Morgan Freeman and the 2006 Scorsese crime drama The Departed.

How was Jack Nicholson discovered?

Nicholson had a long and extremely successful career in Hollywood, starting with a breakout role in the 1969 film Easy Rider.

His first job in the industry was at age 13, when he worked in the MGM offices in the cartoon division. He was quickly offered a job as an animator, but turned it down due to his dreams of becoming an actor.

Nicholson joined a theatre group, and started acting in plays and soap operas, before landing his first feature film role in a low-budget 1958 teen drama.

However, his career wasn’t taking off in the way he’d hoped, and he resigned himself to a career behind the camera as a writer and director.

After writing a film that starred Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper, Nicholson used his connections and snapped up an role in Fonda’s 1969 flick Easy Rider.

The film, on a budget of $400,000, grossed $40 million in the US. Nicholson received his first Oscar nomination, and his career took off from there.

How many Oscars did Jack Nicholson win?

Nicholson has won three acting Oscars, and is the most nominated male performer in Academy Awards history.

He is tied with Daniel Day-Lewis and Walter Brennan for most wins by a male performer. He is also of only two actors to be nominated for an Oscar for acting in films made in every single decade from the ’60s to the 2000s, the other being Michael Caine.

Jack Nicholson’s dating history

Nicholson made a reputation for himself as a partying playboy, not only in his youth but also in his later years. He’s known for his inability to “settle down”, and has six kids with five different women, despite only being married once.

READ MORE: What happened to former child star Lindsay Lohan?

1974: Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston

His marriage to actress Sandra Wright lasted for eight years, from 1960 to 1968 – the pair have one child together.

After his marriage failed, the star dated his Five Easy Pieces co-star Susan Anspach, with whom he shares a son.

In 1971 and 1972, Nicholson was in a relationship with singer Michelle Phillips, the ex-wife of his best friend Dennis Hopper.

His longest relationship was with Anjelica Huston, who he dated from 1973 until 1990. The couple had a very on-again-off-again situation, and Nicholson was linked to numerous other women during their time together.

READ MORE: Inside Anjelica Huston and Jack Nicholson’s dramatic love affair 

Jack Nicholson and girlfriend Lara Flynn Boyle at the Moscow International Film Festival June 30, 2001

Their relationship officially ended when Nicholson revealed his mistress, actress/waitress Rebecca Broussard, was carrying his child. He and Broussard ended up having two kids together.

During 1999, Nicholson was romantically linked to Lara Flynn Boyle – they split in 2000, got back together, and officially split for good in 2004. After that, he briefly dated UK supermodel Kate Moss.

In 2006, Nicholson dated actress Paz de la Huerta.

How many children does Jack Nicholson have?

Nicholson has fathered six children with five women, and has only been married once, to his The Terror co-star Sandra Knight from 1962 to 1968.

READ MORE: Everything to know about Marlon Brando’s 11 children

He and Huston never had kids together, which she has discussed in her memoir and in interviews. She told Variety that the couple did try to fall pregnant when they were together, but the fact they failed may have been a blessing in disguise.

“The truth is, I could never imagine [being a mother]. I can imagine lots of things, but I could never imagine carrying a baby,” she told the magazine in 2014.