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Quotes by Alan Arkin on people, acting, truth, belief, growing-up, philosophy, etc.

26 Great Quotes By Alan Arkin

Famous As: Actor and Director
Born On: March 26, 1934
Born In: Brooklyn, New York, United States

Alan Arkin is an American actor, screenwriter and director. With a career spreading over seven decades, he bagged in an ‘Academy Award’ and a ‘BAFTA Award’ for his performance in ‘Little Miss Sunshine.’ His role in ‘Argo’ earned him critical praise. He bagged in two ‘Academy Award’ nominations for ‘The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter’ and ‘The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming.’ He earned an ‘Oscar’ nomination for ‘People Soup,’ a 12-minute children’s film that marked his directorial debut. He is also renowned for his performances in ‘Thirteen Conversations About One Thing,’ ‘Wait Until Dark,’ ‘The Rocketeer,’ ‘Catch-22,’ ‘Edward Scissorhands,’ and more. Scroll through the treasure trove of quotes by Alan Arkin on heart, philosophy, acting, belief, people, relationship, compassion, comedy, risk, community, winning, life and more.

Either you're growing or you're decaying; there's no middle ground. If you're standing still, you're decaying.

Alan Arkin

My favorite kind of film is serious comedy. Comedy with serious underpinning.

Alan Arkin

Marriage requires searing honesty at all costs. I learned that from my third wife.

Alan Arkin

It's murder to doubt yourself in life. It took until I was 45 to get to that point. As hard as it is in your work, it's harder in your life. But it can be done.

Alan Arkin

If I'm doing a fake movie, it's gonna be a fake hit.

Alan Arkin

I've always considered myself an actor, but I wasn't making a living as an actor.

Alan Arkin

I played guitar. I've always considered myself an actor, but I wasn't making a living as an actor. So I was in a couple of folk groups that managed to keep me in underwear and burritos.

Alan Arkin

I know that if I can't move people, then I have no business being an actor.

Alan Arkin

I gotta keep busy. I'm not happy unless I'm working on two, three things.

Alan Arkin

I don't think it does the audience any good to know what I do to prepare. It keeps it more of a surprise. I don't feel like it has to be a mystery.

Alan Arkin

I don't believe in competitions between artists. This is insane. Who has the authority to say someone is better?

Alan Arkin

Every physicist knows that things connect with each other. To isolate things is not the way the universe works - winning best actor is arbitrary.

Alan Arkin

But one of the things I learned from improvising is that all of life is an improvisation, whether you like it or not. Some of the greatest scientific discoveries of the 20th century came out of people dropping things.

Alan Arkin

All I can say is if the part doesn't delight me in some way, or I can't feel any compassion for it, I just can't do it.

Alan Arkin

'Catch-22' was a huge failure, and it rubbed off on everybody connected to it. I had a bunch of lean years where I had to do things, a lot of which I wasn't wildly enthusiastic about.

Alan Arkin

A product is most easily sold when it has an identity. So they wrap you all up and put a label on you. And then that's what you have to be. But what I'm looking for is the opportunity to explore what I can do, probing the limits, learning.

Alan Arkin

Hollywood is a strange place. The class structure here is more rigid than almost anyplace I've ever experienced. It's made more difficult by the fact that it's constantly changing. You never know what class you belong to unless you're one of the two or three people that have been in the same echelon for a long, long time.

Alan Arkin

I don't believe there's anything in life you can't go back and fix. The ancient Vedas - the oldest Hindu philosophy - and modern science agree that time is an illusion. If that's true, there's no such thing as a past or a future - it's all one huge now. So what you fix now affects the past and the future.

Alan Arkin

I don't live in L.A. on purpose because I don't wanna be immersed in that. I have to have a real life, with real people, in order to inform what I'm doing; otherwise, it just becomes the snake eating its own tail. Vampirism.

Alan Arkin

I don't love the business. I never wanted to be a part of it. I don't think any actor does. Most of the time, I've been really fortunate to work with people who are really fun to work with. It doesn't mean we don't take it seriously, but no one is under the delusion (that we're) bringing world peace.

Alan Arkin

I had a hard time treating my field as if it’s horse racing, putting actors in competition against each other. I see how the industry and the studios feel it’s important, but I don’t really have a feeling for being in competition. I want to feel sympathetic and close to others, not opposed to them.

Alan Arkin

I used to watch the world as if it was a performance and I would realize that certain things that people did moved me, and certain things didn't move me, and I tried to analyze, even at that age, six and seven and eight, why I was moved by certain things they did

Alan Arkin

I'm an actor. My life as an actor depends on who sends me what. I'm just taking the best stuff that I can find that's sent my way, regardless of how big or little the paycheck is. I don't want to work for scale anymore. I'm at a point now where, no matter how good something is, I'm not going to kill myself and end up in the hole.

Alan Arkin

If you want to be an actor and you love acting, you can do it whether you're doing something else or not. You can be connected with community theater or make your own little movies. But, if you want to be a movie star, you've got a tough road ahead of you.

Alan Arkin

Improvisation sometimes seemed more like jazz than acting, like verbal jazz, with the actors playing a theme back and forth, and then introducing another theme, incorporating it, somehow trying to work their way all together to a meaning of some kind, or at least a conclusion.

Alan Arkin

Is it possible to have an endless series of successes without falling on our faces? I suppose it is, but I think it would entail doing the same things over and over again without taking chances, without taking risks or exploring our limits, without finding out what we can and can't do.

Alan Arkin