Jeff Bridges 'resisted' being an actor due to 'anxiety'

Jeff Bridges "resisted" the idea of being an actor at first because it made him "anxious" and there were other things he wanted to pursue.



Jeff Bridges was honoured at the Chaplin Gala
Jeff Bridges was honoured at the Chaplin Gala

Jeff Bridges "resisted" the idea of being an actor because it made him "anxious".

The 'Big Lebowski' star has enjoyed a long and glittering career but he was initially hesitant to follow in the footsteps of his parents, Lloyd and Dorothy Bridges, as there were other things he wanted to pursue, but some advice from his dad that he could utilise his other interests in acting persuaded him to give it a try.

Speaking on stage at the Chaplin Awards Gala in New York City earlier this week, he explained of why he "resisted" acting: “It made me nervous, anxious, and I had other things I wanted to do.

"I was very much into music. I loved ceramics, painting, and who wants to do what their parents do anyway?"

“...My mom and dad, they turned me on not only to showbiz but to the notion that I can make a difference.

“But still, even after Dad’s wise and wonderful advice, his acting pitch, it took me about 10 films before I decided to make acting a career.”

Later in his speech, the 75-year-old actor recalled a key turning point came after he had finished shooting 'The Last American Hero' and was ready for a break, only for his agent to call him about a role in the 'Iceman Cometh' adaptation.

He recalled: “I said, ‘Oh, gee. Tell them thanks, but I’m bushed.' "

But five minutes later,he received a call from 'The Last American Hero' director Lamont Johnson, and explained his reasons for passing on the project.

The filmmaker replied: “You’re bushed, and you’re an ass.”

Jeff continued: “I decided to do a little experiment — I do that from time to time. I thought, ‘OK, I’m gonna do this movie when I don’t feel like it.’ I’ve been wondering if I’m cut out for this acting thing, and if the experience proves to be too much of a drag, well, it’ll be the final nail in the acting coffin.

"So I do the movie, and it turns out to be an incredible experience.”

The event saw stars including Chris Pine, Blythe Danner and Sharon Stone take to the stage to pay tribute to Jeff, while video messages were sent in by his actor brother Beau Bridges, Barbra Streisand and John Lithgow.