Anthony Hopkins: 'Actors Are Pretty Stupid'

Anthopy Hopkins says actors are "stupid." Source: Elena Torre / Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 2.0)

In a conversation with fellow actor Brad Pitt for Interview magazine, Anthony Hopkins explained why he seldom — actually: never — talks about what he calls “present situations in life.” In short: “Actors are pretty stupid.”

Hopkins was interviewed by Pitt because of the release of his new Netflix movie, The Two Popes, in which he plays the part of Pope Benedict XVI. He used the opportunity to explain why he isn’t very interested in large discussions about things that aren’t related directly to his own performance as an actor.

“I’m not a great fan of going to movies anymore,” Hopkins told Pitt. “Except, for example, I went to see Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood. I’m not great at going to see the green screen films. I’ve been in a few of them and they’re fun, but they don’t grab me. I’m a bit too old for that.”

“People ask me questions about present situations in life, and I say, ‘I don’t know, I’m just an actor,'” Hopkins told Pitt. ” I don’t have any opinions. Actors are pretty stupid. My opinion is not worth anything. There’s no controversy for me, so don’t engage me in it, because I’m not going to participate.”

It is extremely refreshing to see an actor take this position. Sadly, the new generation of Hollywood stars has a different opinion. They seem to want to talk about everything, from other people’s movies, to “social constructs of feminism,” to the blessings of communism, and — of course — climate change. Take Mark Ruffalo, the millionaire actor who recently endorsed Bernie Sanders. This multi-millionaire (who’s reportedly worth $30 million) wrote on Twitter that “it’s time for an economic revolution. Capitalism today is failing us, killing us, and robbing from our children’s future.”

The general reaction to Ruffalo’s tweet was one of amusement: the only person who didn’t understand that it was slightly ironic that he was blasting the very system that made him rich and famous was Ruffalo himself. Everybody else was laughing at him. So yes, actors are pretty stupid. Most of them, anyway.

Correction: An earlier version of this article mischaracterized Hopkins’ comments as relating to politics.