I was sucked into this vortex of a very conservative upbringing.
I had a difficult time hearing my own inner voice about what I wanted to be in this life, because there were all these perfect examples of what a man actually does. The notion is that he goes to college, gets married and provides. That's what a man does.
You have to pick the stories that you want to be involved with and the end game is you'd like to be a part of a hit. But I think your moral obligation is to follow your own heart.
I stand up for what I believe. I don't know if it's always paid off for me, because I've been ridiculed and humiliated.
I enjoy sports. I get a real joy from playing sports but I don't look for those movies. Oliver Stone wanted to know if I would do Any Given Sunday and it just didn't appeal to me.
If you're going to tear down a hero, you should never forget that you're tearing down someone else's hero. You're tearing down somebody else's son. You might have to face her one day.
I'm a big fan of dreams. Unfortunately, dreams are our first casualty in life - people seem to give them up, quicker than anything, for a 'reality.'
President Kennedy was willing to go to war. He was not a coward. The man had been in war and so had Ken O'Donnell. He was ready to protect this nation, but he was not ready for a military solution just because it was being rammed down his throat.
Field of Dreams is probably our generation's It's A Wonderful Life.
Being a celebrity is probably the closest to being a beautiful woman as you can get.
We stand our best chance of leaving a legacy to those who want to learn, our children, by standing firm. In matters of style, hey, swing with the stream. But in matters of principle, you need to stand like a rock.
When I do a Western, I often wonder what I would have really done in that situation.
I don't give up. I'm a plodder. People come and go, but I stay the course.
I've been around where I knew other actors were going to steal the scene, and I don't compete with them.
I don't think I'd have been as good as Bruce was. He was a better JFK than I would have been.
If you think of 'Liberty Valance' or 'The Searchers,' there are moments in there that you'll never, ever forget... And it does not matter what century you are from.
I don't feel the need to direct. I tried to get other people to direct Dances, but they wouldn't do it. They all thought it was too long. One director wanted to cut the Civil War sequence. Another thought the white woman was very cliched.
When I read Thirteen Days I was moved by it. It was just a great time for the world, in terms of looking back in history and seeing how we got ourselves into trouble and how we got ourselves out of trouble.
One person doesn't have to shoulder all the responsibility for why a film does or doesn't do well.
Failure doesn't kill you… it increases your desire to make something happen.
I work for the public, for the people who are paying to go to the cinema, rather than for the critics.
You're this rat in the American maze, working your way towards the cheese, which is a job.
I'm in a position where whatever I do, I can get my head handed to me. I'm in a position to fail because there is a whole group of people out there who want me to fail. It's a weird vibe.
When I see my children, and when I see the people who value me, I know how lucky I am.
I'm getting those familiar feelings, and I'm just going to enjoy the process of getting to know someone again.
I try to please myself. I don't try to anticipate what people want to see.
What are we blaming? Is this Vietnam? We made a movie, it didn't make much money. I'm gonna be really happy if somebody watches it in 10 years' time and really enjoys it.
I believe people who go into politics want to do the right thing. And then they hit a big wall of re-election and the pettiness of politics. In the end, politics gets in the way of the business of people.
I haven't lived a perfect life. I have regrets. But that's from a lifetime of taking chances, making decisions, and trying not to be frozen. The only thing that I can do with my regrets is understand them.
When I played Robin Hood, I knew the great role was Alan Rickman's and it didn't bother me. I always think that leading actors should be called the best supporting actors.
I've had some movies that have been ridiculed, but that's OK with me. I don't feel that really defines me. Should I change who I am to be popular?
I think these movies are as much for people of that time as for people who weren't born. For people who weren't born, they see how leaders must act under a crisis situation, not trying to be re-elected or not trying to check polls, that they go from their gut check.
There are a lot of things that come to bear on movies now that I don't think are good for movies. They're trying to appeal to the biggest demographic and, when they do that, you sometimes flatten out.
We still live with this unbelievable threat over our heads of nuclear war. I mean, are we stupid? Do we think that the nuclear threat has gone, that the nuclear destruction of the planet is not imminent? It's a delusion to think it's gone away.
You have to try to dismiss the loudness of cynicism. It's certainly going to come.
When I make a film I'm away from home for two to three months. So I want my kids to look at my films one day and say, I love his movies, I love his choices-because he loved them.
If you're willing to tell somebody that you love them, are you also willing to say you're sorry? You need to, even when you think you're in the right.
We all have that burning question about what happens if we lose somebody we love, especially if we lose them tragically. We wonder what fear was going on, we wonder if we could have reached out and touched them, held their hand, looked in their eyes, been there.
I don't think I ever take huge risks, though I'm not scared of doing so.
Lincoln was the greatest speaker and he was ridiculed for how he looked, you know?
In America, politicians do whatever to get re-elected, and a lot of decisions that were being made at that time by Kennedy were certain not to get him re-elected.