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Mikhail Baryshnikov Destroyed Lea Thompson's Ballet Dreams

March 3rd, 2012 9:01am EST

Mikhail Baryshnikov Back To The Future star Lea Thompson has ballet superstar Mikhail Baryshnikov to thank for her acting career because he told her she would never make it professionally as a dancer.

The criticism destroyed her ballet dreams when she was 20, but he was right and she immediately found success as an actress.

Thompson tells WENN, "I was in American Ballet II when I was 20 and Baryshnikov was the head of that and it came the moment when he had to say whether we would advance to the company or not. He said, 'You're a lovely dancer but you're too stocky.'

"I was 98 pounds and I was like, 'I can't be any thinner; you can see my bones!' He was there at my epiphany when I decided to stop dancing and not be a ballet dancer. It was a wonderful moment because I could've just been banging my head against the wall for another 10 years.

"Then I started acting and got work very quickly... It was the best thing that ever happened to me."

Related: Back to the Future, Lea Thompson, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Celebrity, Relationships

Photo Credits: PR Photos

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