Henriksen at Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival, 2010
|Born||Lance James Henriksen
May 5, 1940
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Residence||Los Angeles, California, U.S.|
|Occupation||Actor, voice actor, artist|
|Height||1.79 m (5 ft 10 in)|
|Spouse(s)||Mary Jane Evans (m. 1985â€“89)
Jane Pollack (m. 1995â€“2006)
What's frustrating to me is when, on a low-budget movie, people don't take chances. A big-budget movie, that script's your bible; nobody's going to risk going off the page. But when you're doing a very low-budget film, why not take some chances, intellectually, artistically?
To me rites of passage through life, that's a wonderful, beautiful thing.
You do your work as fully as you can, and the ones who hear the sound join in.
I'm a good guy. I love playing bad guys, but good guys that have a good thing going on, I like that, too. I don't like passive good guys.
I liked 'Scream of the Banshee' because it was a real challenge. I thought, 'How am I going to pull off this character?' But, I also thought, 'Oh, man, I'm going to go for it.' He's got all the defects of character that an actor loves to play. So, I had a really great time.
You know something, if you're not acting, you're not an actor – you've gotta work. No way around it.
I appreciate the idea that anybody would think of me as a star. But I'm really not career oriented in the sense that I want to be a star. It's not in me. It's not what I do. In fact, I'm amazed that I've even gotten this far.
You can't do every movie – although I do a lot of them – and the thing I'm longing to do is… it's not that I think I'm funny… but I long to do a situation comedy.
Growing up, I think I always had a sense of art: a sense that there was poetry in the world. I didn't know where I was going to find it. I didn't know where I was going to fit in, that was for sure. But I kept moving forward. There wasn't a future in anything other than movement.
In a way, being born is a sort of ecological contagion. When you have longevity of family, we remember our grandfathers and maybe our great-grandfathers. We somehow don't have the capacity in modern life to remember further than that. All of the ramifications of their lives have an effect on us, and we're not aware of it.
When I do a horror or a fantasy film it all boils down to something in the script that surprises me. It could be a big thing or a small moment. If it's there I'll do it.
Because I've done a lot of theater, I know what power is and how megalomaniacs are, since I've certainly played some.
As a kid, there was a painting of 'Appeal to the Great Spirit' that I would see when I would get oatmeal bowls out of the cupboard. This painting, it was so real to me that it frightened me.
In the late 1960s, I ended up in Telluride, Colorado. It wasn't like the country club that it is now. It was very raw. Skiing was there, but snowboarders have now entirely overrun it.
One of my favorites of all time was with Jim Jarmusch, called 'Dead Man.' I was in that with Johnny Depp. I ride really well, and I shoot a gun really well. I love the genre. Once I did Westerns, I was hooked.
I really like playing good guys, of course. Although, people make mistakes in their lives, and you could say that the mistakes make us who we are, by how we respond to them. I just don't want to play boring good guys, but I don't have that problem, anyway.
Corporate nationalism to me is a little bit like what would have happened if Hitler had won. It's scary stuff. It's totalitarianism in a different from, under a different flavour.
I always wanted to be an actor, even when I was a little kid. When I used to run away from home, I'd go to movies and sit all night watching Kirk Douglas. When I was 16, I tried getting into the Actors Studio, and they told me to get lost. I said 'I'll come back when I'm a man,' and I came back when I was 30.
Charles Bean is a brilliant director. I come in with an idea and try to do it, but I fall on my face. And then, he says, 'Wait a minute, there was a little moment in there. Let's try that moment and expand in that direction.'
The thing I hate most in acting is asking permission to do things. What you really want to do is say, 'This is my need; this is what's going to get me further; this is what's going to be alive. I don't ever say, 'Do you mind if…?' I just come in and do it.
I've always known from the beginning of my acting career that you only get an acting job if you've got something to learn about it. If you don't do it well, you'll be condemned to doing the same role over and over and over again. If you do it mediocre, you'll have to do it again.
But to this day – I'm very literate now, I love to read, I read constantly – words don't resonate the way they do to a person with a formal education. They're like a maze, a puzzle that has to be opened up.
My feeling is, I do a lot of low-budget films. I don't do low-budget acting. I have no interest in just goofballing my way through, thinking, 'Ah, no one's ever going to see this anyway.'