Hoffman and Hawke played opposite each other in “Before the devil knows you are dead” by Sidney Lumet.
Any list of the best actors of all time is required to include the latest Philip Seymour Hoffman, who won an Oscar for “Capote” and left his mark in cinema with unforgettable tricks in “The master“,” Boogie Nights “,” Magnolia “,” Happiness “,” Almost Famous “and” Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead “, among other titles. This latest film, a 2007 police drama that marked Sidney Lumet’s last film before his death, pitted Hoffman opposite Ethan Hawke. In a recent interview with Canoe, Hawke says it was Hoffman who gave him the best acting advice he has ever received in his career.
“Philip Seymour Hoffman said you have to do this job and maintain a sense of humor,” said Hawke. “[He reminded me] that we are just a group of children playing a play. It’s quite a blunder. But also, treat it like life and death and a game that matters. If you can hold these two truths at the same time, you can really have an interesting career. “
Hoffman and Hawke both found success as actors in New York and their time working with Sidney Lumet brought the two performers closer. Hoffman died in February 2014. Hawke has often talked about the impact of Hoffman on his career. Speaking to Los Angeles Times In 2017, Hawke said any actor can watch Hoffman’s performance to realize the importance of making every line count.
“Philip played so many second guys left or the third policeman or number four server,” said Hawke. “I never played these roles. But what he learned to do was to maximize each opportunity, to maximize each line. He did not miss a line. Phil did not take a line for granted. He was fierce and I started to think [early in my career] I have to play more character games because of this. “
Hawke and Hoffman are also connected through Sam Shepard’s play “True West”. Hoffman starred as Lee in a 2000 cover Broadway cover, while Hawke starred as Lee in a 2019 version. Hawke said Variety Last year, in the play, “Phil’s ghost is strong in my psyche. Rather than ignore it, I invited him to teach me. “