Alfredo James Pacino, popularly known as Al Pacino, is a prolific American actor, film-maker, script writer. Starting off from humble beginnings in theatres, the watershed moment in his career arrived after he portrayed the role of Michael Corleone in Francis Ford Coppola's ‘The Godfather’ trilogy. He gained international recognition and critical acclaim for his role in the trilogy and is regarded as one of the best on screen performances in film history. He also played significant roles in movies such as The Insider, Insomnia, Heat, Scarface and Carlito's Way. His endless list of accolades includes Academy Award, Tony Award, Primetime Emmy Awards, Golden Globe Awards, Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award and the National Medal of Arts. Pacino is also a celebrated theatre artist and director. He received the Tony Awards for his performance in Does a Tiger Wear a Necktie? and The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel. Pacino holds the “Triple Crown of Acting” as he’s one of the only few actors to win the Oscars, the Emmy and the Tony Awards. We have collected some of the most famous and iconic quotes by Al Pacino from his movies and dialogues, interviews and observations. Here are some of the most enlightening quotes from this legend of American cinema.
The hardest thing about being famous is that people are always nice to you. You're in a conversation and everybody's agreeing with what you're saying - even if you say something totally crazy. You need people who can tell you what you don't want to hear.
When I was younger, I would go to auditions to have the opportunity to audition, which would mean another chance to get up there and try out my stuff, or try out what I learned and see how it worked with an audience, because where are you gonna get an audience?
You need some insecurity if you're an actor. It keeps the pot boiling. I haven't yet started to think about retiring. I was shocked when I heard about Paul Newman retiring at age 82. Most actors just fade away like old soldiers.
I remember acting in a school play about the melting pot when I was very little. There was a great big pot onstage. On the other side of the pot was a little girl who had dark hair, and she and I were representing the Italians. And I thought: Is that what an Italian looked like?
When my mother got home from work, she would take me to the movies. It was her way of getting out, and she would take me with her. I'd go home and act all the parts. It had a tremendous influence on my becoming an actor.
Francis Ford Coppola did this early on. You tape a movie, like a radio show, and you have the narrator read all the stage directions. And then you go back like a few days later and then you listen to the movie. And it sort of plays in your mind like a film, like a first rough cut of a movie.
Shakespeare's plays are more violent than 'Scarface.'
I've always been in the theater. I've always gone to it. That's been my way to cope. Early on in my career, I remember running - fleeing - to the theater as a way of coping with all the meshugaas that was going on for me.
Some of the roles that are challenging are more in theater and TV. In movies, there's a tendency to cast actors in roles that have been successful for them. It has to pay for itself.
It surprised me, the feeling I got when I won the Oscar for 'Scent of a Woman.' It was a new feeling. I'd never felt it. I don't see my Oscar much now. But when I first got it, there was a feeling for weeks afterward that I guess is akin to winning a gold medal in the Olympics.
My dad was in the army. World War II. He got his college education from the army. After World War II he became an insurance salesman. Really, I didn't know my dad very well. He and my mother split up after the war. I was raised by my maternal grandmother and grandfather, and by my mother.
When I was a younger actor, I would try to keep it serious all day. But I have found, later on, that the lighter I am about things when I'm going to do a big scene that's dramatic and takes a lot out of you, the better off I am when I come to it.
I like, for instance, 'Serpico.' I enjoyed playing Serpico because Frank Serpico was there. He existed. He was a real life person and I could - I could embody him. I could, you know, I could work and get to know him and have him help me with the text, the script and become him. It's almost like a painter having a model to become.
Sometimes it's better to be with the devil u know than the angel u didn't know
Vanity is my favourite sin.
Doing Shakespeare once is not fair to the play. I have been in Shakespeare plays when it's not until the last two or three performances when I even understand certain things. In the old days star actors would travel the world doing the same parts over and over again.
I do believe, and I will always believe, that Shakespeare on film is really something that should be tried more often because it is an opportunity to take the humanity that Shakespeare writes into characters and express it.