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Quotations by Jeff Bridges.

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(on deciding to do The Big Lebowski) When I was offered the part of The Dude in The Big Lebowski, I went through a big thing in my head worrying if this was going to be a bad example for my girls. The guy was kind of an anti-hero, a pot-smoking, slacker kind of guy, and I was really racking my brain about it. I always want to feel free to play any role, a despicable guy or a good guy -- the full range of human experience. But this one was really giving me problems. So I assembled the family and told them my problem. After a long pause, my middle girl said, `Dad, you`re an actor. We know that it`s all pretend what you do. We know that when you kiss some lady on the screen that you still love Mom. We know you`re an actor.` So I had their permission, their blessing, to go play a character like The Dude. That was great that they understood that. And I count on the audiences to understand that what I do in my personal life and what I do on the screen are not some kind of example for them to base their lives on. Hopefully, when people see a movie, they know it`s a movie.

My father encouraged his kids to go into showbiz, not because he wanted to live vicariously through them, but because he dug it so much. Growing up there was like a mild competition with my father and my brother, not so much maybe in reality, but in my own mind.

Nowadays, in the contract that actors sign, you have to agree that you`re going to do a certain amount of publicity-the hard part they don`t pay you for.

As far as Beau is concerned, we`re on the same team, we root for each other. If my parts are slightly more attractive, or are perceived that way by others, he`s very content.

When you start to engage with your creative processes, it shakes up all your impulses, and they all kind of inform one another.

(on working with Kevin Spacey on K-PAX and their similarities in working) I`ve been a big fan of his work -- The Usual Suspects, American Beauty, L.A. Confidential. He`s a really good actor and he turns out to be a wonderful guy as well. We approach acting in the same way in that we both enjoy the process. We both like rehearsals and we understand the value of them. There are some actors who don`t like to engage with other actors; they just like to relate to each other between `Action!` and `Cut!` But I`ve always felt that getting to know the people you`re working with can inform and enrich the work. The closer you get, even if you`re playing opposites, the better the work. Some actors are afraid of leaving it all off-camera or getting the characters confused, but I don`t see it that way. I often feel that the actual movie is like the skin sloughed off the snake; it`s the by-product of the real valuable stuff, which is the real-life experience of doing it.

Most cynics are really crushed romantics: they`ve been hurt, they`re sensitive, and their cynicism is a shell that`s protecting this tiny, dear part in them that`s still alive.

Movies are like magic tricks.

I went from high school -- bang! -- into the movies. I did spend a few weeks in acting classes in New York when my father was there doing Cactus Flower. But most of my training really came from my parents and my brother, Beau.

I`m very manipulative towards directors. My theory is that everyone on the set is directing the film, we`re all receiving art messages from the universe on how we should do the film.

I kind of rebelled against it. I resisted it. I didn`t know what I wanted to do when I was a kid and was reluctant to go into, y`know, Dad`s line of business.

I don`t think I ever went down that movie star path. I always enjoy taking a 90-degree turn from the last thing I did.

(on his father) My father, unlike his father, was very supportive of all his kids getting involved in movies and acting in general. He loved what he did and wanted to turn his kids onto it. He thought it was a great way of meeting people, being creative, and traveling around the world and doing what you love to do.

I had years of partying, and I was kind of surprised and happy I survived it all. Now, being a parent, I look back on it thinking, Oh God, the things you did!

I`ve had really great experiences working with first-time directors. They come at filmmaking with fresh ideas. I`ve been very lucky that way.

I had a great `70s. I survived it, and that`s always good news.

As far as the lack of hits goes, I think perhaps it`s because I`ve played a lot of different roles and have not created a persona that the public can latch on to. I have played everything from psychopathic killers to romantic leading men, and in picking such diverse roles I have avoided typecasting.

Working with my dad was such a gas. We approached the work in a similar way. We only made two films together when I was an adult, Tucker, and Blown Away, but it was so much fun to play with your parent like that.

I had years of partying, and I was kind of surprised and happy I survived it all. Now, being a parent, I look back on it thinking, Oh God, the things you did!

Basically, one of the hardest things about being an actor is getting your first break. I`m a product of nepotism. The doors were open to me. I`d done several movies before I decided what I wanted to do. There was a certain amount of guilt and worry about whether I really had what it takes. I thought I`d spare my girls that.

I love John Irving`s stuff. It`s that marriage of comedy and tragedy. It`s really terrific.

A large part of acting is just pretending. You get to work with these other great make-believers, all making believe as hard as they can. What I learned most from my father wasn`t anything he said; it was just the way he behaved. He loved his work so much that, whenever he came on set, he brought that with him, and other people rose to it.

Most cynics are really crushed romantics: they`ve been hurt, they`re sensitive, and their cynicism is a shell that`s protecting this tiny, dear part in them that`s still alive.

The problem with the designated driver programme, it`s not a desirable job. But if you ever get s*cked into doing it, have fun with it. At then end of the night drop them off at the wrong house.

For a long while I wasn`t sure I was going to make acting my main focus professionally. I was interested in music, painting and other creative pursuits. I did the movies with a little more capricious an attitude; I wasn`t so seriously minded as a total professional. Then came The Iceman Cometh. We had eight weeks of rehearsals and then we shot for two weeks. So it was almost the reverse of how most movies are made. During those eight weeks, I was sitting around with these great actors and this great director, just shooting the breeze and, of course, going over the material. I was also getting to know how other actors of that caliber work on things like this. It was very enlightening. After that experience, I decided, `Hey, I can do this. And I can do this for the rest of my life in a professional way.`


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