I started teaching when I was in my 20s because Lee Strasberg asked me to, and he didn't do that with a lot of people.
Mankind, his brain has embraced so many amazing things, and yet we're still beating each other over the heads with clubs, excepting the bullets now, one bullet can wipe out an entire city.
Nobody knew me. They just knew that I was the guy from 'Mission: Impossible.'
Dialogue is what a character's willing to share and reveal to another character, and the 90% they aren't willing to share is what I do for a living.
All 'Hamlets' are different, and it's the most overwritten play ever written.
To really have craft, you must be able to repeat something as one has to do in films.
I could play a lot of things. And it's hard for people and logically hard and understandably hard for people to think of me for certain roles.
I still care about human behavior and the art that it takes to write a good piece and to get a cast together who cares enough to put 150 percent of their talent into a project.
A lot of the time with an independent production, you go onto the set, and you rehearse it in front of the crew, and at that point, the cinematographer takes over. You start accommodating the camera instead of the camera accommodating you.
I'm a big believer that an actor should be able to pick up any piece of material and act it, the way a good musician can.
I did a picture called 'Lovely, Still' with Ellen Burstyn, We screened it to the AARP people in Las Vegas, 2000 of them. We got a standing ovation from people who couldn't stand.
People do not necessarily reveal what is going on - only bad actors do.
I was being groomed to be the theatrical caricaturist. And I know if I got that job, I'd never quit. So I quit. I knew I wanted to go into the theater... I wanted to act.
A lot of the bad guys I've played just haven't had much dimension to them.
The way a character sounds is so important to how you're going to play him.
Harry Dean Stanton, Anjelica Huston - a lot of people have studied with me. It's paying my dues.
I hung around with Jason Robards, Richard Harris, Robert Shaw, Richard Burton. I knew not to match them for drinks.
Agents have enormous power that studios relinquished to them. The studios, when I first came to Hollywood, that's where the power was.
The year I got into The Actors Studio, Steve McQueen and I were the only two accepted that whole year.
I'm not speaking, you know, egocentrically at all, but I do have a very wide range.
I look for roles where there is some kind of an arc to the story.
The modern cineplexes are mundane, dull boxes. But 'The Majestic' pays tribute to the movie palaces that made people feel like royalty. It honors a time when pictures helped Americans get through grim periods like the blacklist and the war.
There are not many A-list directors who get to make the movies they want to make. I know two: Woody Allen and Tim Burton. Two different textures, but both get to do what they want, and that's rare.
I love to see lack of clarity in a performance as well as clarity, as well as trust, as well as the kinds of things that human beings go through. I love to see spontaneity and 'inevitability.' How it gets there is going to shock the hell out of me, but it will get there somehow.
In film, there are always things that could conceivably create artificiality in any performance.
Actors need to trust themselves. If you trust yourself, you can trust others and leave the director outside.
I think we've all done things we're not particularly fond of. Everybody goes through it and comes out the other end, and goes on with his life as if it didn't happen.
I'm very proud of Space 1999. Its success paved the way for other sci-fi shows to follow. My hope is that the DVD release will help it reach a new generation of fans.
'Mission' was a mind game. The ideal mission was getting in and getting out without anyone ever knowing we were there.
The average scene in a film, you have to shoot it 15, 20 times. That means you got to laugh or cry 15, 20 times.
I always believed that all it would take was a decent role. I felt like a pinch hitter with a leaden bat: that if I got a chance, I could hit a home run.
Everything that has happened to me is of value to me. As painful as certain things are, and have been, and were, there's a use for those things in my life and in my work.
My mantra is 'stay perpendicular.' Horizontal is not as good.
A film is not going to change the world. But if it can do that to individuals on an individual level, I think it's a magnificent movie.
Sergio Leone came to see me when I was doing 'Mission Impossible.' He wanted me to do 'A Fistful of Dollars.' I turned him down. I didn't want to get stuck as a stoic Western movie star.
The real good comedians, like Chaplin, would make you laugh and a second later, cry.
My technique has always been to include all the periphery around me.
I had hair down to my shoulders, a beard and mustache. I was crude and rude.
Human beings are fascinating with religion and stories about not dying. Or dying and being brought back to life. I think it's just part of our make up.
For my generation of actors, it was about the theatre. Television didn't exist. Coaxial cable didn't exist.
You can have immediate regrets, but if you look at stuff and say, 'Things happen for a reason', there's a fatalistic thing about it. Something will happen that will justify it in some way.
I studied with Strasberg, Elia Kazan. They raised the bar. They weren't easy to please, and they made you achieve the best you could do. That's what a teacher does: he infuses you with passion for something.
I've turned down a lot of roles. Some of them made stars out of the people. I have no regrets.