Embrace your differences and the qualities about you that you think are weird. Eventually, they’re going to be the only things separating you from everyone else.

 

 

 
It was like a huge master class every day in rehearsal with [director] Bob Falls and [actor] Liev Schreiber. I spent the whole time at the table taking notes on everything Liev was saying: Quoting Shakespeare and how [the play “Talk Radio”] was similar to this or that play. I’d come in and be so hyped up and he’d be like, “Listen. It’s all great, but you gotta figure out what you want here and why.” [2007]

I seem to keep ending up with these bad boy characters. I don’t understand what’s going on. I walk the street in New York feeling like I’m Paul Rudd or something, but apparently no one else sees it that way. [2012]

[on living in Manhattan, NYC] I love staring out the window. New York, it’s like a candy jar – watching people is so phenomenal. Looking at [the couple at the next table] right now, you can tell so much by what they order or their body language. I just find that really fun. It’s kind of like being a detective a little bit. [2012]

The things I learned from my parents, what was deeply ingrained in their generation, is this idea of opportunity and the freedom to have an opportunity. The way the United States was thought of is as a place you can have this chance to do anything, to say, “This is my idea, and I get to offer it to you, and if you like it, I can profit from it.” It’s why they were so encouraging of me to act too, because they knew how much easier it was to do here. [2016]

When I go to work I don’t discriminate it as a comic-book movie. It’s full-on commitment. That’s all you can do. (…) Comic-book movies are mythology in a way, and there are a lot more parallels in them with what’s going on in the real world than people want to discuss…[2016]

It’s OK to have dreams, it’s OK to have goals, in my opinion. But I really think it’s much more about the climb and the work you do on the way up. The climb is really hard and really rough, but it’s also the best part because there are still places to climb up to. [2016]

[on his early struggling actor days] Most of the people I admire as actors didn’t make it until their mid-30s: The Mark Ruffalos, the John Hawkeses of the world. (…) One of my first big auditions for a casting director in New York – who’s amazing, I’m not going to say their name – I walked into the audition, and they were on their computer doing an email. The assistant was behind them. And I said “Hi,” and they didn’t turn around. They said, “Yeah, go ahead.” And then I read with the assistant, and the casting director didn’t even turn once! I was in the same room, they were continuing to type the email while I was in there doing it! Just brutal. (…) I always look at auditions as not even getting the job as much as I’m just trying to connect with this casting director so they remember me for next time. (…) Those beginning years, looking back, they could be really tough and painful and hurtful but there was something great about it. And once it’s gone, it’s gone. [2016]

I used to smoke a lot. And I had this ritual, where I’d show up for the audition, have a cigarette, and keep the stub until I heard whether or not I got the job. Now its a lot of meditation, music, I’m a bit music guy and I like to create my own playlists. Anything that helps get your concentration in order.

Yeah, I love having beers with all the guys, Anthony Mackie (the Falcon) and Chris Evans included. I’m still really close friends with all the people I’ve worked with.