Tom Hiddleston Hinted He Left Public Eye Due to Taylor Swift Relationship and Media Scrutiny

Tom Hiddleston is known for quite a few roles, but he’s best known for playing Loki, god of mischief and brother to Thor in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But he does know how to keep a low profile in the public eye. In a new interview, he shared that he’s private for important reasons, of course, but hinted that it might have to do with his high-profile relationship — and breakup — with Taylor Swift

Tom Hiddleston and Taylor Swift dated in 2016

Tom Hiddleston and Taylor Swift arrive at Sydney International Airport, 2016
Tom Hiddleston and Taylor Swift arrive at Sydney International Airport, 2016 | Cameron Richardson / Newspix

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Hiddleston first starred as Loki in 2011 in the first Thor movie. He’s then reprised the role several times and is taking it up again in one of the most prominent ways in his own Disney+ series, Loki

In May 2016, before he had to film the third installment Thor: Ragnarok, he met Swift at the Met Gala according to Elle. They famously danced at that event and hit it off. According to The Independent, the two stars dated for three months that year following meeting. While it wasn’t a very long romance, their relationship was well-documented by the tabloids and paparazzi, like during Swift’s July 4th party that year where Hiddleston was spotted in an “I ‘heart’ TS’” shirt.

Their relationship was all during the time of the Kim Kardashian, Kanye West phone call debacle too, which might have brought them closer together as Swift was going through a lot of public scrutiny more so than usual. He met her parents in the short time they were together, and she met his as well; as stated above, it ended after a few months. They traveled a ton, too. 

According to Elle, Swift initially went to Australia with Hiddleston when he first went to film Thor: Ragnarok in the summer ofr 2016 and even hung out with the cast. But after she went back to Los Angeles and they spent time apart, they went their separate ways by September even though it seemed like they tried to make it work for a bit. 

Hiddleston said he wanted to live life and appreciate it more

Now, Hiddleston hasn’t been in the public eye nearly as much since that summer of 2016. 

In a new interview with Empire, gearing up for his new series Loki, Hiddleston talked about how he’s pretty selective about the projects he takes now, and how it does factor into his personal life. 

“A few things crossed my path and I thought carefully about them, but they didn’t feel quite right, so I didn’t do them,” he said.

The article commented on his “retreat from the spotlight” but didn’t necessarily link it to his breakup with Swift. However, it is notable that it came right after that breakup. He said that he had “a moment of consideration” that changed his approach on fame. 

“I’d been playing so many different people in so many different parts of the world, and it’s very important to distinguish what’s real in one’s own life, and look after those things,” Hiddleston said on his thought process around living in the spotlight. “Because if you don’t look after them, they can be lost, or they can be marginalized, and then you come home one day and they’re not there anymore.”

He also talked about how Tilda Swinton’s character in the movie Only Lovers Left Alive taught the actor that “life is about surviving things, appreciating nature, nurturing kindness and friendship, and dancing.” 

“So perhaps, in the moment, I needed to come back and do it. I don’t know, to be honest, that I danced a lot,” he reflected. “I should have danced more. But I’m sure there are some people who’d say I’ve danced far too much.”

Hiddleston said he had to be ‘psychologically strong’ to not let anyone distort his reality with their opinions on him after dating Swift

Tom Hiddleston poses at the opening night of the new play 'Slave Play' on Broadway on Oct. 6, 2019
Tom Hiddleston poses at the opening night of the new play ‘Slave Play’ on Broadway on Oct. 6, 2019 | Bruce Glikas/WireImage

Right after his breakup with Swift, back in February 2017, Hiddleston did an interview with GQ where he was pretty candid about the breakup and heartbreak and even down to the “I ‘heart’ TS” tank top. It’s one of the few times he was so open about it, and he hasn’t been since. And it gives an insight into why he has been so guarded all of these years, now. 

“I have to be so psychologically strong about not letting other people’s interpretations about my life affect my life,” Hiddleston said. “A relationship exists between two people. We will always know what it was. The narratives that are out there altogether have been extrapolated from pictures that were taken without consent or permission, with no context.”

He said that he’s “still trying to work out a way of having a personal life and protecting it, but also without hiding.” And when it came down to talking about Swift herself, Hiddleston only had good things to say. 

“I only know the woman I met. She’s incredible,” he said. But, of course, there was just so many paparazzi and so much media attention. “A relationship always takes work. A relationship in the limelight takes work. And it’s not just the limelight. It’s everything else.” 

It seems like it’s been a long road for Hiddleston, but now it sounds like he has a good balance of living and working. With Loki premiering on June 11, hopefully he has that on lock. 

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