There were centuries when civilization had no theater.

Many would never speak with a full mouth, but do it with an empty head.

The two things you cannot do effectively on stage are pray and copulate.

I much prefer people who rock the boat to people who jump out.

They teach anything in universities today. You can major in mud pies.

Good evening, ladies and gentleman. My name is Orson Welles. I am an actor. I am a writer. I am a producer. I am a director. I am a magician. I appear onstage and on the radio. Why are there so many of me and so few of you?

The absence of limitations is the enemy of art.

Nobody gets justice. People only get good luck or bad luck.

When people accept breaking the law as normal, something happens to the whole society.

The greatest enemy of art is the absence of limitations.

We're born alone, we live alone, we die alone. Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we're not alone.

Every actor in his heart believes everything bad that's printed about him.

The essential is to excite the spectators. If that means playing Hamlet on a flying trapeze or in an aquarium, you do it.

My kind of director is an actor-director who writes.

Look at the real prodigies, and I look like nothing compared to them.

I was spoiled in a very strange way as a child, because everybody told me, from the moment I was able to hear, that I was absolutely marvelous, and I never heard a discouraging word for years, you see. I didn't know what was ahead of me.

I'm not basically a happy person, but I have all kinds of joy.

The first thing one must remember about film is that it is a young medium. And it is essential for every responsible artist to cultivate the ground that has been left fallow.

Old age is the only disease you dont want to be cured of.

Nobody who takes on anything big and tough can afford to be modest.

I've spent most of my mature life trying to prove that I'm not irresponsible.

Only very intelligent people don't wish they were in politics, and I'm dumb enough to want to be in there.

Did you ever stop to think why cops are always famous for being dumb? Simple. Because they don't have to be anything else.

I don't say we all ought to misbehave, but we ought to look as if we could.

The enemy of society is middle class and the enemy of life is middle age.

The classy gangster is a Hollywood invention.

I hate television. I hate it as much as peanuts. But I can't stop eating peanuts.

People are losing the capacity to listen to words or follow ideas.

I am essentially a hack, a commercial person. If I had a hobby, I would immediately make money on it or abandon it.

I'm not a walking extra in a Chekhov play; I'm no Slavic gloom or Irish gloom.

One shouldn't ever be conscious of the author as lecturer. When social or moral points are too heavily stressed, I always get uncomfortable.

I hate Woody Allen physically, I dislike that kind of man.

Now I'm an old Christmas tree, the roots of which have died. They just come along and while the little needles fall off me replace them with medallions.

Everything bad that has ever happened to me has been caused by agents or lawyers.

I don't pray because I don't want to bore God.

A film is never really good unless the camera is an eye in the head of a poet.

I have made an art form of the interview. The French are the best interviewers, despite their addiction to the triad, like all Cartesians.

I don't pray really, because I don't want to bore God.

If you've noticed that I don't use long takes, it's not because I don't like them, but because no one gives me the necessary means to treat myself to them. It's more economical to make one image, then this image and then that image, and try to control them later, in the editing studio.

I've never understood the cult of Hitchcock. Particularly the late American movies... Egotism and laziness. And they're all lit like television shows.

I feel I have to protect myself against things. So I'm pretty careful to lose most of them.

If you want a happy ending, that depends, of course, on where you stop your story.

I have the terrible feeling that, because I am wearing a white beard and am sitting in the back of the theatre, you expect me to tell you the truth about something. These are the cheap seats, not Mount Sinai.

At twenty-one, so many things appear solid, permanent, untenable.

I have no great message to the world.

Popularity should be no scale for the election of politicians. If it would depend on popularity, Donald Duck and The Muppets would take seats in senate.

Ecstasy is not really part of the scene we can do on celluloid.

I started at the top and worked my way down.

Living in the lap of luxury isn't bad except that you never know when luxury is going to stand up.