FPI / December 9, 2019
The award for best description of actors and their political opinions goes to — Anthony Hopkins.
The Oscar-winning star of The Silence of the Lambs, who portrayed Richard Nixon in Oliver Stone’s “Nixon”, says he avoids talking publicly about politics. Unlike many of his Trump Derangement Syndrome-suffering Hollywood peers, Hopkins has never publicly offered an opinion of the current occupant of the White House.
“People ask me questions about present situations in life,” Hopkins said a conversation with fellow actor Brad Pitt for the latest issue of Interview magazine.
“I say, ‘I don’t know, I’m just an actor,” Hopkins said. “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.'”
Hopkins, originally from Wales, is a long-time California resident who became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2000.
In the Interview conversation, Hopkins spoke of his role as Nixon in the 1995 biopic directed by Oliver Stone: “Oliver Stone gave me the part of Nixon, and I remember thinking, 'Why would he give me that part?’ And he said, ‘Because I’ve read interviews about you being a loner. That was Nixon.' ”
To prepare for the role, Hopkins said he watched films of Nixon and visited Yorba Linda in California to see the house where the former president was born. Hopkins recalled that President Bill Clinton had told him that he would phone Nixon every week to talk about China and Russia.
“You can see the pain in [Nixon], and you think, ‘Well, am I better than him? No. I’m not better than him. I’ve got my own immoral quirks,' ” Hopkins said.
Both Hopkins and Pitt talked about giving up alcohol and the mistakes they made before they became sober.
Pitt said: “I think we’re living in a time where we’re extremely judgmental and quick to treat people as disposable. We’ve always placed great importance on the mistake. But the next move, what you do after the mistake, is what really defines a person.”
Hopkins added: “We’ve all screwed up.”
As for his current project, Hopkins plays Pope Benedict XVI and co-star Jonathan Pryce portrays Pope Francis in Netflix’s The Two Popes, which debuts on the streaming platform Dec. 20.
Free Press International