Outtakes from our interview with Christopher Walken.
When we spoke to Christopher Walken for the November issue of Maxim it occurred to us that few, if any actors, could put together a greatest hits real that compares to Walken's. Some actors are described as scene stealers, but Walken not only steals the scenes he's in, those scenes steal the whole movie. We got him talking about some of his more memorable screen gems.
"I started to get jobs in the movies, and almost immediately it was these unhinged guys, like Deer Hunter and Annie Hall. And if you’re lucky in the business, you get a kind of a ball rolling. If you’re successful early on as a leading man, or as the best friend, or as the comic relief, or as the villain, or as the crazy guy, or whatever, if you make some kind of mark, chances are you’ll be asked to do that again. It’s just the nature of the business."
"I went to an office to audition, and I think I had to go three times. I remember [the director] Michael Cimino said to me, “Did you read the script?” Yes. “And what part do you want to play?” And I said, I’d play anything. I never thought they’d give me the part of Nick. It was a big juicy part. I just said whatever you want me in and I’ll be there."
"With Quentin Tarantino, who wrote True Romance but didn't direct it, my dialogue was exactly what he put on the page. Woody Allen was the same way."
"One time I walked into this sauna, and there were about eight guys there, very quiet, minding their own business, and all of a sudden this guy starts in with my speech from
. Talking about all the years spent in the Hanoi Hilton, hiding the watch. Word for word, he’d memorized it! At first I didn’t know what was happening, and then all these guys started laughing. It was a bizarre moment!"
Fatboy Slim, Weapon of Choice
"You know, my background is in musical theater, and I was a dancer. So I think when Spike Jonze was doing this video, somebody had said, check out Chris Walken in the picture Pennies From Heaven. I had the luck again to do these musical movies in a time when they don’t do musical movies.
"I think doing
Saturday Night Live
powerfully affected the course of my movie career, because I started to get offered these kind of wacky parts in comedies. You know, when I did a play on Broadway recently, people would bring cowbells to the theater and bang them during the curtain call."