First ET Interview: Anthony Hopkins' Inner Turmoil


Anthony Hopkins is drawing raves for his portrayal of the Master of Suspense in Hitchcock, and we're flashing back to our first-ever interview with the Oscar-winning Welsh actor in 1981, when he said that the rogue's gallery of characters he likes to play draws upon the inner turmoil he holds from a somewhat troubled childhood.

Pics: Alfred Hitchcock's Leading Ladies

"I suppose consciously and unconsciously I bring it all into play," said Hopkins, then 44 years old. Before playing the slightly twisted and manipulative Hitchcock and the devious Hannibal Lecter, Hopkins took on the role of none other than Adolf Hitler, and he said he based the character on his "tyrannical" grandfather.

Hopkins also referenced some of his own past demons, but explained that they were all now "in check."

"I don't have a great rage anymore; I got that in check and controlled it, I suppose," said the star. "I'm generally one of the happiest guys I know."

Video: Meet the Master of Suspense

He continued, "I don't quite know what the process of acting is. I know that I go to references in the past and references within myself and other people and I just put it all together like a meal. It's like a recipe."

With some fava beans and a nice chianti, perhaps?