John Malkovich on Preparing for a Role and More


John Malkovich
John Malkovich, currently starring in RED, is someone I wish would star in more studio movies. He just elevates everything he’s in, doesn’t he?

English Conversation About A Celebr...
English Conversation About A Celebrity

He recently shared some thoughts on how he prepares for a part and more.

How does he prepare for a role:
“I always read a screenplay many, many times. Then when you show up (on the set), you get a sense of what people are doing. And I always look at the whole thing not just at what I’m doing. I look at it and see basically, if I’m a point or a counterpoint in this scene, in this story, at this moment. People often ask me about roles. I’ve done a few films where I had a fantastic role, and even maybe I was OK in it, but if the film isn’t good, you’re much better off not having made it, even if it was a wonderful role.”

On how he like being directed:
“I think there are two schools of acting. Some actors are highly reticent to commit anything to celluloid that is not their choice. They have an idea about it and they want pretty much exactly that or only that. I have nothing against that. Then there’s another type of actor – which is what I am. I would prefer that the director make clear what they want from me.”

On retiring from acting:
“They’ll retire me when it’s time to retire. I will have worked with and had the pleasure of having met some of the most incredibly interesting peoples and some of the most gifted filmmakers around the world. So when they retire me, I’d probably miss the people, but that’ll be that.”

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