James Lipton, interviewed, Kevin Spacey in 2001 during his “Inside the Actor’s Studio” talk show. My favorite part is during his final Q&A in which someone asks, about the “lean years” and how they should look at the ultimate prize. Kevin answers it eloquently.
“There is no prize ‘out there’.
The only prize is this one [points to self], and what you feel, and what you want to accomplish. And if you can, as you start out these, what could be lean years, what could be fat years…
I feel that I very often watch a lot of young people sort of meander around, without any idea about why they’re doing what they’re doing.
I mean, to want, and to be ambitious, and to want to be successful, is not enough. That’s just desire. To know what you want. To understand why you’re doing it. To dedicate every breath in your body, to achieve… if you feel you have something to give, if you feel that your particular talent is worth developing, is worth caring for, then there’s nothing you can’t achieve.
You’re going to grow up with your colleagues. You’re going to watch them have success and watch them have failure, and you’re going to watch how they deal with it. And they can be as much a teacher for you, as anybody here [looks to either side of himself] or anyone who’s privileged enough to come here and speak to you.”
You can watch it here: