55+ Best Acting Quotes That Are Oscar Worthy

Robert De Niro is among the most successful actors, find quotes from him and other actor quotes here.

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Have you ever wondered who the most famous actor is?

Currently it is Leonardo DiCaprio, who won an Oscar for his work in 'The Revenant' in 2016, but there are so many other great actors out there. If you too want to be a successful actor, you should take a look at these inspirational quotes from famous people who have found success in the world of stage and screen.

Actor Jack Lemmon once said, "If you really do want to be an actor who can satisfy himself and his audience, you need to be vulnerable," and this quote has always been a source of encouragement for actors. Actors looking for more encouragement should also take inspiration and encouragement from the careers of their idols, after all they all started at the bottom and worked their way to success!

So, if you are looking for acting inspiration and encouragement, you should take a look at this list of inspirational quotes for actors. Full of movie stars quotes from Stella Adler, James Dean, Bette Davis and more, these quotes from famous actors and famous theatre quotes are bound to inspire you. This list of famous acting quotes also includes plenty of funny quotes from actors and funny quotes about acting, if you are looking for a laugh too!

If you love these famous actor quotes and funny acting quotes by famous actors, then be sure to check out these [theatre quotes] and Tom Hanks quotes too. But for now, relax and get ready to enjoy this list of the best inspirational theatre quotes, famous acting quotes and funny quotes about actors, enjoy!

Famous Acting Quotes

Film fans will love these acting quotes!

There are several famous acting quotes from actors and actresses, and even from directors and producers. These acting quotes have been in existence for a long time. Some of the best acting quotes are from our favorite actors and actresses like Stella Adler, James Dean, and Michael Chekhov, whilst other great acting quotes are from other prominent figures, such as Oscar Wilde. Below are some of the most famous acting quotes, just for you.

1. "I've learned to get really good at this - say one thing when I'm thinking about something else, act like I'm listening when I'm not, pretend to be calm and happy when I'm really freaking out. It's one of the skills you perfect as you get older."

- Lauren Oliver, 'Delirium'.

2. "My father taught me that you can you read a hundred books on wisdom and write a hundred books on wisdom, but unless you apply what you learned then its only words on a page. Life is not lived with intentions, but action."

- Shannon Alder.

3. "Actors in any capacity, artists of any stripe, are inspired by their curiosity, by their desire to explore all quarters of life, in light and in dark, and reflect what they find in their work. Artists instinctively want to reflect humanity, their own and each other's, in all its intermittent virtue and vitality, frailty and fallibility."

- Tom Hiddleston.

4. "Stand on a stage and hold the hearts of men in your hands. Make them laugh with a gesture, cry with a word. Make them love you. And you will know what power is."

- Jennifer Donnelly, 'Revolution'.

5. "Film acting is one of the only industries where you’re criticized for working hard. In any other industry, it’s considered a quality and something to behold."

- Nicolas Cage.

6. "Great acting is not easy; anyone who says it is is either shallow or a charlatan. And one of the hardest things about acting is admitting that it is hard."

- Robert Cohen.

7. "Acting is not about being someone different. It’s finding the similarity in what is apparently different, then finding myself in there."

- Meryl Streep.

8. "I believe in imagination. I did 'Kramer vs. Kramer' before I had children. But the mother I would be was already inside me."

- Meryl Streep.

9. "Competition [in a scene] is healthy. Competition is life. Yet most actors refuse to acknowledge this. They don’t want to compete. They want to get along. And they are therefore not first-rate actors."

- Michael Shurtleff.

10. "My job is usually to express emotion as freely as possible."

- Meryl Streep.

11. "Your internal dialogue has got to be different from what you say. And you know, in film, hopefully that registers and speaks volumes. It's always the unspoken word and what's happening behind someone's eyes that makes it so rich."

- Viola Davis.

12. “Study, find all the good teachers and study with them, get involved in acting to act, not to be famous or for the money. Do plays. It’s not worth it if you are just in it for the money. You have to love it.”

- Philip Seymour Hoffman.

13. “Yes: I am a dreamer. For a dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.”

- Oscar Wilde.

14. "Acting isn’t something you do. Instead of doing it, it occurs. If you’re going to start with logic, you might as well give up. You can have conscious preparation, but you have unconscious results.”

- Lee Strasberg.

15. "To fulfil a dream, to be allowed to sweat over lonely labor, to be given a chance to create, is the meat and potatoes of life. The money is the gravy.”

- Bette Davis.

16. “I think the most liberating thing I did early on was to free myself from any concern with my looks as they pertained to my work.”

-Meryl Streep.

17. “You can’t learn to act unless you’re criticized. If you tie that criticism to your childhood insecurities you’ll have a terrible time. Instead, you must take criticism objectively, pertaining it only to the work being done.”

- Sanford Meisner.

18. "If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else. It will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.”

- Bruce Lee.

19. “When you do something that people respond to, and then you start altering the blueprint for what worked, it’s pretty fear-inducing. But sometimes, you have to do that, in order to push the boundaries.”

- Rami Malek.

20. “I think that young women and little girls need to see that they don’t have to be the damsel in distress. They don’t have to not show their strength. They don’t have to be whatever the stereotype is or the tropes that we go to in our minds.”

- Octavia Spencer.

21. “Life has to be everything... Because the lows have you appreciate the highs. And the highs give you perspective on the lows. If it’s not everything, it becomes flat or mundane.”

- Sterling K Brown.

22. “Integrate what you believe in every single area of your life. Take your heart to work and ask the most and best of everybody else, too.”

- Meryl Streep.

23. “As an actor you try to bring as much of yourself to a part to try and create a feeling of authenticity and emotional truth and resonance.”

- Jesse Eisenberg.

24. “Acting is a form of self-expression, it’s not becoming someone else, and it’s not playing make believe; it’s about using the fiction of being someone else to express something about yourself.”

- Maggie Gyllenhaal.

25. “Every movie I make I find kind of excruciating. I get a lot back from it, but I feel like I’m kind of always working at the edge of my ability. I guess that’s what I’m looking for when I go to work. I am trying to become the edge.”

- Michelle Williams.

26. “It’s tough, acting. you have to walk two lines of a tightrope. There’s the all consuming fear of failure… and there’s also confidence – you have to be confident to try new things. And they fight each other all the time.”

- Jessica Chastain.

27. "When you work on anything, you want to find the range of impulses. which ones get portrayed is another question, but you want to have that complexity and that fullness, even if you’re playing a cartoon character.”

- Willem Dafoe.

28. “All I would tell people is to hold on to what was individual about themselves, not to allow their ambition for success to cause them to try to imitate the success of others. You’ve got to find it on your own terms.”

- Harrison Ford.

29. “If any of the work, that any of us do, contributes to the stretching of culture, the stretching of boundaries of empathy that’s expected of an audience… that’s the holy grail.”

- Riz Ahmed.

30. “I feel like telling stories is a spiritual exercise and I think that it’s something that we need as a culture and as humans. You put your nightmares up there, you put your dreams up there and people can see them better because they can stand outside of it and recognize themselves inside it.”

- Holly Hunter.

31. “For me, our job as artists is to serve the story, serve the director, and serve the fellow actors. And if you do that, by osmosis you’re serving yourself because you’ll get the best out of yourself.”

- David Oyelowo.

Inspirational Acting Quotes

What is your favorite acting quote?

If you are looking for some inspiration to act, these acting quotes are for you. These acting quotes are from people who have plenty of acting experience throughout their careers, so the inspirational quotes come from years of acting experience. These acting quotes are certainly Oscar-worthy! So, grab your popcorn and get comfortable before pressing play on this great list of acting quotes for all budding actors to enjoy! Which of these acting quotes is your favorite?

32. “If you get a chance to act in a room that somebody else has paid rent for, then you’re given a free chance to practice your craft.”

- Philip Seymour Hoffman.

33. “If all the circumstances of acting are made too easy, then there’s no grain of sand to make the pearl.”

- Peter Sarsgaard.

34. “It’s important to say that the more challenging a scene is, in a way, the more fun it is because the more of my job I get to do.”

- Daniel Radcliffe.

35. “I’ve always approached things with hunger and just enough fear. Plenty of confidence, you know, but just enough fear to work extra hard. Paralyzing fear does nothing, but the kind of fear that makes you nervous enough to really be aware and focused? I like that kind of fear.”

- Queen Latifah.

36. “When you’re in a theater, it’s about reaching the back rows. When you have a camera in your face, it’s just about knowing the size of the room.”

- Corey Stoll.

37. “An actor is at most a poet and at least an entertainer.”

- Marlon Brando.

38. “My thought process has always been, I’m excited to show you what my version of this story would look like. You’re going to be able to get a little condensed show. That took the pressure off getting the job.”

- Tituss Burgess.

39. “If you’re an actor, even a successful one, you’re still waiting for the phone to ring.”

- Kevin Bacon.

40. “If you live in the past that’s depression, and if you live in the future that’s anxiety. So you have no choice but to live in the present.”

- Sarah Silverman.

41. “If you risk nothing, then you risk everything.”

- Geena Davis.

42. "You’re not going there to get a job. You’re going there to present what you do."

- Bryan Cranston.

43. "If you can see yourself doing anything else and being happy, by all means, go and do it. But if you cannot, if you cannot see yourself doing anything else, then you should go for it and not let anybody tell you no."

- Kristin Chenoweth.

44. "I think there was something in me at a young age that was not worried about success, but was worried about becoming a better actor."

- Paul Dano.

45. “Goals on the road to achievement cannot be achieved without discipline and consistency.”

- Denzel Washington.

46. "People acting in their own self-interest is the fuel for all the discovery, innovation, and prosperity that powers the world."

- John Stossel.

47. "Acting is like a Halloween mask that you put on."

- River Phoenix.

48. "The art of acting consists in keeping people from coughing."

- Ralph Richardson.

49. "Acting doesn't bring anything to a text. On the contrary, it detracts from it."

- Marguerite Duras.

50. "Acting is a spiritual quest to touch human beings."

- Larry Moss.

51. "Acting is not being emotional, but being able to fully express emotion."

- Kate Reid.

52. "Acting is not about being famous, it's about exploring the human soul."

- Annette Bening.

53. "Acting is all about honesty. If you can fake that, you've got it made."

- George Burns.

54. "I really think that effective acting has to do literally with the movement of molecules."

- Charlotte Whitton.

55. "Acting is behaving truthfully under imaginary circumstances."

- Sanford Meisner.

56. "Acting is standing up naked and turning around very slowly."

- Rosalind Russell.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our acting quotes, then why not take a look at these [Shakespeare love quotes] and Morgan Freeman quotes for more?


Written By

Kidadl Team

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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