Alfred Molina on His Vast Filmography: “My problem is saying no”

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Alfred Molina

It’s not your job as an actor to feel anything. It’s your job to make the audience feel it” – Alfred Molina

Taking a look at a list of Alfred Molina‘s acting credits will probably surprise you. He works more often that most people realize, and his work in film, television, theater, and even video games amounts to a staggeringly long list. In an interview with The Guardian, Molina confesses that there are a few things he’s not willing to do for roles anymore, but overall there is very little that would stop him from taking an acting job.

Pointing out that he’s 62, Molina says that he is no longer interested in taking roles that require physical transformation. He says, “I’m getting older now. Certain roles are beyond me. If someone says we’ve got a great part for you but you’ll need to lose 30lb, I say, well, get a thinner actor. Same thing if I was asked to gain 30lb to play Orson Welles. I’ve done physical transformations in the past, but not any more. You notice that it’s mostly young actors who do it.”

Nonetheless, Molina doesn’t mean that he can be too choosy with his roles, which explains his wide range of performances in film and television — including some he regrets. He jokes, “I’ve never been in a position where I could afford not to work… I’ll do anything. I’m a bit of s–t that way. My problem is saying no.” Because of that, he has no plans to slow down his schedule, adding, “Actors never die, they just become less available.

Despite his acclaimed performances, Molina does not take stock in method acting as a discipline of working. He explains, “It’s not your job as an actor to feel anything. It’s your job to make the audience feel it. What you feel is neither here nor there. I don’t put myself through some terrible pain, or create anguish for myself. That’s therapy.”

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