Photo: Terry Richardson

The Fail
My personal life.
I mean, I’m divorced. I was married to someone [actress Kim Basinger]. I got very Zen about it. It doesn’t really matter who’s to blame. But in many ways my marriage mirrors my experience in the film business. I think to myself, How many years do I have left? What’s out there that I want to enjoy?

The Save
A very productive midlife crisis.
I had the realization: God, I’m 51 years old and I spent 30 years of my life doing things I didn’t want to do. The things you do to please other people! I said to myself, Well now I’m just going to have a good time. That was the most freeing thing. For the first time, I wanted to do whatever I felt like that day. I wrote a book, A Promise to Ourselves, this critique of the family law system. I want to write more books. I want to go back to school. I might even run for public office.

Read interview on Wired.