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Published On: Fri, May 31st, 2013

Michael Caine talks about roles he’ll be remembered by, taking small parts and being ‘very fortunate’

Michael Caine has played big roles and small ones, many of them memorable. His films include everything from Alfie to The Man Who Would Be King, from The Cider House Rules to The Dark Knight.

“I’ve been very fortunate,” Caine tells NPR‘s Robert Siegel promoting his latest film Now You See Me, “because I spent my life doing something that I love doing so much, I used to do it for nothing. So you can’t have a better life than that.”

cast photo Now You See Me Michael Caine Woody HarrelsonCaine was asked to pick his three roles he’d like to be known and why.

“I’d pick Dirty Rotten Scoundrels because it was the funniest. I’d pick Educating Rita because it was the farthest away from me — I’m playing a university professor. And I’d pick Alfie, which made me a star and got me my first Academy Award nomination.

“… Some people would have said The Man Who Would Be Kingand things like that, or Get CarterSleuth with Larry [Laurence] Olivier — I mean, there were a lot of them. But these were the three.”

The Inception star then discusses his considerations to turn down small roles or small projects.

“No. I think where that comes from is my background of repertory, where I did a play a week. One week I’d be the lord, the next week I’d be the butler. For me, the performance was always playing different people. And so when I got older, was no longer the romantic leading movie star, it became more and more interesting for me, the characters I played, you know?

“I won an Academy Award for The Cider House Rules, playing an American. It was fascinating — it still is fascinating for me. I’m about to do a sort of thriller with Ben Kingsley, and then I’m going to do a picture with Al Pacino where he plays an aging rock star who wants a last tour, and then I’m going to be a professor in Christopher Nolan’s new film Interstellar. … I’ll be 95 before I get over all that.

“But you see what I’m saying — I’m not the lead in any of those films, but it’s very, very interesting.”

Check out the full interview here

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About the Author

- Stephen is a contributor and writer on The Dispatch. Stephen is the founder and editor for the Steven Spielberg Fan Club website and contributes to pop culture stories on The Dispatch, especially upcoming movie news. Beginning in 2016, Stephen took the role of Managing Editor for the Tampa Dispatch.

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