“When he talks, he has so much energy it’s almost like he’s dancing. So I used that to choreograph his action scenes.”
– John Woo
“The thing about film-making is I give it everything, that’s why I work so hard. I always tell young actors to take charge. It’s not that hard. Sign your own checks, be responsible.”
“I don’t drink but I had a beer that night and they only did one set up like that. I’m a cheap date. What can I say?” — to Jay Leno regarding his topless Vanity Fair cover shoot.
“We knew from the beginning the level of commitment needed. We felt honored to work with Stanley Kubrick. We were going to do what it took to do this picture, whatever time, because I felt – and Nic [Nicole Kidman] did, too – that this was going to be a really special time for us. We knew it would be difficult. But I would have absolutely kicked myself if I hadn’t done this.” – Talking about “Eyes Wide Shut”.
“I have cooked turkeys in my day but when Mom’s around I let her do it.”
“I was 18 when I saw Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai. After about 30 seconds I relaised that this was not just a cultural thing, it was universal. Years later I read Bushido. It talked about many things that I strive for in my own life: loyality, compassion, responsibility, the idea of looking back on your life and taking responsibility for everything you’ve ever done. I’m fascinated by the samurai and the samurai code – it’s one of the main reasons I wanted to make The Last Samurai.”
“Awards are wonderful. I’ve been nominated many times and I’ve won many awards. But my journey is not towards that. If it happens it will be a blast. If it doesn’t, it’s still been a blast.”
“I believe in life. I know that life comes in at your heart and it doesn’t matter if you’re an actor, a filmmaker or a gentleman on the street, it comes at you. What Scientology gives me is the tools to deal with that, to better enjoy my life and to be able to contribute more.”
“I’ve never played a character like this before. Vincent interested me because he is such an anti-social personality, bringing destruction and chaos with him wherever he goes. He’s a force of nature.” On his role as the hitman in ‘Collateral’
I remember getting through high school and thinking, ‘Boy, I’m glad I got that behind me!’ Then when I was 19, I got ‘Risky Business,’ and I realized, ‘Ah, so this is life – it’s a little bigger than I thought!
As a young actor, people were trying to define who I was before I really knew that for myself. But I still remember thinking, ‘This is what I love doing, and I hope I’m going to be able to do it forever.
I’ve had a very interesting life. There are ways of handling the complexities. I’m willing to take on responsibilities as a father, as a producer, as an actor – and I enjoy that. I’ve always been changing and evolving and growing. There’s no pinnacle of power where you can sit back and rest.
Because I grew up in so many different places, I was used to rumors [about me]. You know, I didn’t have the right shoes, I didn’t have the right clothes. I even had the wrong accent.
I would live with all of my sisters if I could. We’ve always been very close, my sisters and me.
The important thing with a child is that you love them, you protect them and you help them to grow and find out who they are. And as a parent, it’s my responsibility to help them to become independent and get all the knowledge and a broad view of the world and life. I know that Nic absolutely agrees with that. And that’s what’s important: being there.
I’d like to be with a woman who goes [he switches into a woman’s voice], “I’ve reviewed your schedule, and I’m going to set up this motorcycle trip for you, because you’ve been working really hard. And I’m going to go with you. We’re going to go riding together. And I’ve already been working on it for a couple days so it can be special.”
I don’t really keep counsel with others. I’m the kind of person who will think about something, and if I know it’s right I’m not going to ask anybody. I don’t go, “Boy, what do you think about this?” I’ve made every decision for myself – in my career, in my life.
“SAT (exam) scores have gone right down the toilet. The parents are blaming the teachers, the teachers are blaming the parents and the psychs are putting everyone on drugs.”
“It’s amusing at first. It’s funny. But then you sit back and realize how sad it is that there are people who can’t even imagine feeling like this. But my friends are happy for me. The people who know me are happy. My mom is happy. My family is happy.” – On the relationship with Katie Holmes, about other people thinking it’s a publicity stunt
“I’ve never agreed with psychiatry, ever. Before I was a Scientologist, I never agreed with psychiatry. Here’s the problem. You don’t know the history of psychiatry. I do.”
“I’m passionate about learning. I’m passionate about life.”
“Personally, I don’t have all the information President Bush has. But I believe Saddam has committed many crimes against humanity and his own people.” [On the Iraq War]