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Danny DeVito Quotes

Daniel Michael DeVito

Danny DeVito quotes: towering tidbits from the long-time actor.

“What would a smarter person than me do?  Then do it!”

“The choices we make dictate the lives we lead.”

“But you can’t live in the past.  What you gotta do is think of the future because what you’re doing right now is gonna be the good old days.  If you sit around on your butt and don’t do anything, when you’re 90 you’re going to have no ‘good old days’ to think about.  You’ve got to do it now.  You gotta get up and do something.”

“You have to go with what’s happening at the moment and how you feel about it.”

“Starting out, it’s such a seemingly insurmountable task.  You have to find the fun in it.”

“A tree falls the way it leans.  Be careful the way you lean.”

“You just throw the dice and you get lucky.  And I surround myself with smart folks – usually young smart folks.  It’s good to be thought of in a good light, to have a little bit of clout, but you can’t carry the ball all by yourself.  You need a team.”

“I don’t think it’s a bad thing for everybody who’s in that generation, the baby boomers or whatever I am, to open themselves up to young folks because I believe – not to sound cliché and like I’m winning a beauty contest – but I believe our future lies with the young people.”

“In order for the light of gratitude and happiness to shine so brightly, the darkness of how it could be worse must be present.”

“I believe that if life gives you lemons, you should make lemonade… and try to find somebody whose life has given them vodka, and have a party.”

“It’s fun to be on the edge.  I think you do your best work when you take chances, when you’re not safe, when you’re not in the middle of the road – at least for me, anyway.”

“I don’t look ahead.  I’m right here with you.  It’s a good way to be.”

“I’m always studying and I’ve been doing it for a long time now.”

“I don’t think I’ve been bored, ever.  I’ve always been working on two or three things at a time; whether it was in the early days, or whatever, I was always working on something.”

“A word to the wise ain’t necessary – it’s the stupid ones that need the advice.”

“Do not take life too seriously.  You will never get out of it alive.”

“My parents worked their tails off, but we weren’t the poorest people in town.  Some people I went to school with, you could tell they were dirt poor.”

“My father was a good man.  He supported his family.  He always worked hard.”

“I remember the first time I said to my parents I was going to be an actor.  They said, ‘How you gonna do that?’  I said, ‘I don’t know.  I’m going to this school that I found.’  My family was very cool about it all.  They weren’t surprised I was trying new things… I had nothing to do.”

“That’s the way it is in life, you know?  Starting out, you can’t think of that.  What you have to dwell on, the toughest thing, is just jumping off that ledge into the abyss.  There’s so many daunting things when you’re starting out – whether you’re a writer or an actor or a carpenter – doesn’t matter.  You’re just trying to find the feel of the wood.”

“I climbed like a billion stairs… it’s not like I can take them two at a time.”

“But acting is not just a job, it’s a craft.  My grandfather was a tailor.  He could take a piece of cloth and make the most beautiful things.  I like to think I’ve got some of that ability to take all the elements and work them into something beautiful, something that will grab people and entertain them.”

“Also, I’ve gotten rid of my worst impulses by acting them out.  It started with Louie.  It’s like a license to kill.  I was given this wonderfully diabolical, self-serving, self-centered character to play.”

“When I was a kid I used to sit in front of the TV watching old movies and thinking I could do that but I couldn’t really tell my pals what I was planning.  That would have been too tough.  They would have said, ‘Danny what’re ya, nuts?  Who d’ya think you are, Cary Grant?’  So I had to keep my mouth shut.  But I was learning about comedy.”

“You’ve got to look around the world and see what’s going on.”

“It is about greed, doing the right thing at the right time using your clout when you have it… and what for… and what reason.”

“So, you pick this stuff here and this stuff there and then you see things in certain ways and you start visualizing and thank God I get the chance to do this.  It’s really the greatest thing in the whole wide world.”

“When I’m directing or producing, I like to do different kinds of stories.  But you have to know what you really like, and when you do, you have to front your position.”

“I think of all the characters that I’ve ever played, they’re always about five feet tall.”

“You walk into any room, anyplace, there’s a set of circumstances.  As an actor, you want to walk in and make some kind of impression.  I was fortunate about being remembered, because I have a certain physicality that sticks with you.”

“I think Taxi is one of the seminal, great shows that was ever made on television.  I mean the story and those characters, that’s what makes a great show – it’s the characters.  And I always fell in love with the characters.”

“I am self-centered.  I just adore myself.”

“I am very impatient… and my favorite word is: f*ck.”

“Wherever I am, it’s a really good feeling to have that connection to people.  I love to go out to talk to people and be with folks.  I don’t shy away from it.”

“I’m high as a kite.  I just keep going.  I just keep talking.”

“After you’ve lived with somebody for 11 years, what’s a guy in a robe reading from a book going to change?”

“A lot of it revolves around food with me because a lot of my life does in a way.  Christmas is a good excuse to eat everything.”

“People come into your lives who you have a good time with, and time goes by and you still have a good time with them and you do stupid stuff with them.  To me, that’s life.”

“The whole point of love is to put someone else’s needs above your own.”

“If you’re going to have kids, there’s only one way to go.  They have to know they’re the most important things in your life, and once you’re doing that, there’s no way that you could not learn from them, because they just give you stuff constantly.”

“I don’t care whether I’m good enough.  I don’t care whether I snore or not.  I don’t care which God I pray to.  There are only three things with that kind of unconditional acceptance: dogs, donuts and money.”

“Everybody needs money.  That’s why they call it money.”

“A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend.  A successful woman is one who can find such a man.”

“[On considering his greatest achievement] Staying alive.”

“[On the most important lesson life has taught him] There’s no certainty.”

“I have been very fortunate in my life.  I have had a lot of happiness.  I have a great family and I work a lot, and that’s what I like to do.”

“I’ve been having a good time.  I’m gonna kick ass, baby!  I’m gonna take my nap and then I’m gonna kick ass.”

Related: Billy Bob Thornton quotes.

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