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James Stewart Quotes

James Maitland Stewart

James Stewart quotes: about faith, friendship, decency, discipline, and more.

“If we don’t try, we don’t do.  And if we don’t do, what are we on this earth for?”

“I think one day you’ll find that you’re the hero you’ve been looking for.”

“You have to develop a style that suits you and pursue it, not just develop a bag of tricks.”

“Learn from the masters, learn from your contemporaries.  Always try to update yourself.”

“Have you ever noticed how grateful you are to see daylight again after coming through a long dark tunnel?  Always try to see life around you as if you’d just come out of a tunnel.”

Fear is an insidious and deadly thing.  It can warp judgment, freeze reflexes, breed mistakes.  Worse, it’s contagious.”

“You know, people seldom go to the trouble of scratching the surface of things to find the inner truth.”

“An element of conflict in any discussion is a very good thing.  It shows everybody’s taking part and nobody’s left out.  I like that.”

“Too much praise can turn a fellow’s head if he doesn’t watch his step.”

“Liberty is too precious to be buried in books.  Men should hold it up in front of them every single day of their lives and say, ‘I’m free.’”

“I wouldn’t give you two cents for all your fancy rules if, behind them, they didn’t have a little bit of plain, ordinary, everyday kindness and a little looking out for the other fella, too.”

“Having friends around for a pleasant evening is one of life’s most cherished joys as far as I am concerned.  But when those with me are fellow believers, how much greater that joy is, for we know that it’s rekindled, one day in eternity.”

“I always have a wonderful time, wherever I am, whomever I’m with.”

“The true Christian reaction to suffering and sorrow is not the attitude of self-pity, fatalism or resentment; it is the spirit which takes life’s difficulties as a God-given opportunity, and regards its troubles as a sacred trust, and wears the thorns as a crown.”

“I have developed a deep respect for animals.  I consider them fellow living creatures with certain rights that should not be violated any more than those of humans.”

“You must be oh-so smart, or oh-so pleasant.  For years I was smart.  I recommend pleasant… and you may quote me.”

“I was going to be an architect.  I graduated with a degree in architecture and I had a scholarship to go back to Princeton and get my Masters in architecture.  I’d done theatricals in college, but I’d done them because it was fun.”

“I guess I was just sort of stung by this acting bug and it’s sort of a lifelong thing with me.”

“I sort of got into Westerns… it was a sort of desperation move, really.  I had several pictures that didn’t go very well, and I just realized that I would have to try something else.”

“If a Western is a good Western, it gives you a sense of that world and some of the qualities those men had – their comradeship, loyalty, and physical courage.”

“I have my own rules and adhere to them.  The rule is simple but inflexible.  A James Stewart picture must have two vital ingredients.  It will be clean and it will involve the triumph of the underdog over the bully.”

“I’ve sort of gotten into the habit of looking for the vulnerable guy, the guy who makes mistakes, the guy who can’t figure things out all the time but keeps at it.”

“Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.”

“The great thing about the movies is, you’re giving people little tiny pieces of time… that they never forget.”

“Don’t miss the wonders that surround you because every tree, every rock, every anthill, every star is filled with the wonders of nature.”

“I’ve wrestled with reality for 35 years, and I’m happy, doctor, I finally won out over it.”

“One good thing about a postage stamp – it always sticks to one thing until it gets there.  I’m sort of like that, too.”

“If I had my career over again?  Maybe I’d say to myself, ‘Speed it up a little.'”

“It’s a wonderful life.”

Next, Kevin Costner quotes.

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