Anthony Hopkins won the Academy Award for Best Leading Actor on Sunday Night. The American Film Academy appreciated his role in Florian Zeller, “The Father”. Hopkins previously won an Academy Award in 1992 for The Silence of the Lambs.
This time he defeated 83-year-old actor Chadwick Bosman (“Ma Rainey: Mother of Blues”), Riz Ahmed (“Sound of Metal”), Stephen Yoon (“Minari”) and Gary Oldman (“Mank”).
Hopkins did not attend the ceremony and did not communicate with the bidders online. Jeremy Barber, the actor’s longtime agent, told People.com, “Tony was right where he grew up: Wells. He was asleep when I came at 4 am to let him know he won an Oscar.” Hopkins was “happy and grateful,” he added.
Anthony Hopkins recorded a short video that he posted on Instagram. He thanked him for granting him the award and mentioned the late Chadwick Bosman, who was nominated in the same category.
According to Reuters, Hopkins is the oldest Academy Award winner. As the actor said, referring to his role in the father, “It’s amazing to be old. I’m glad I’m at this age. I didn’t have to pretend I’m too old.
Anthony Hopkins. A career spanning decades
This is another success in the actor’s long and colorful career. Hopkins is best known for his brilliant roles in movies like The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal, Elephant Man, Picasso, and Nixon.
Anthony Hopkins is considered one of the greatest movie actors today. Initially, he performed mainly in the theater. However, his cinematic roles brought him the greatest fame.
Hopkins was born in 1937 in the Welsh town of Margham. The future actor devoted more time than school duties to learning to play the piano, as well as drawing and coloring. At the age of 15, he met his idol, Welsh actor Richard Burton. He decided to link his future with acting. He entered the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff, graduating in 1957.
After two years in the Army, he joined the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. He made his debut in 1960 in the play “Have a Cigarette”, and received positive reviews for his role. The young actor became interested in the famous Sir Lawrence Olivier, who in 1965 appointed Hopkins to the Royal National Theater as his ward.
The theater was not enough
However, the repetition of theatrical roles was no longer enough for the ambitious young actor. Hopkins wanted fame from a movie star. In 1968, he got the chance to star in Anthony Harvey’s historical drama “The Lion in the Winter” opposite Peter O’Toole and Katharine Hepburn. From that moment on, Hopkins began to turn more and more away from the theatrical scenes and toward a television studio.
After a series of appearances in BBC productions, he starred in “A Change of Seasons” opposite Shirley MacLean, who he said was “the most obnoxious actress he has worked with.”
Anthony Hopkins (1971)
Success with Hannibal
In 1987, Hopkins was awarded the Order of the British Empire. His fame grew rapidly. His biggest success came in 1991 with the role of Hannibal Lecter, a psychopathic intellectual killer, in The Silence of the Lambs, for which he won the Academy Award for Best Actor. Hopkins played Lecter twice more in “Hannibal” and “The Red Dragon.” When he was offered the role, he was only planning to return to the stage – he was going to appear on “M Butterfly”. After he appeared in The Silence of the Lambs, American film magazines recognized him as the “perfect villain.”
Shortly before taking on the role of Lecter, the actor planned to return to England and his theater career. Nevertheless, he remained in the United States, having lived in Los Angeles and accepting American citizenship, which he celebrated by traveling across the continent.
Play until you forget you’re playing
His preparations for the role also became famous. Hopkins used to repeat a scene over and over, sometimes several hundreds of times, until “everything becomes so normal that I am not familiar with the play” – he explained in interviews. As part of the rehearsals, the actor had a habit of memorizing poetry, especially Shakespeare.
In addition to acting, Hopkins is also involved in charitable work, supporting various charities with his name and generous donations. He is also known for his controversial statements about religion, and his handling of alcoholism in 1975, which he attributes to religious revelation.
In 1986, he made his debut as a musician – even his song “Distant Star” was a huge hit on the charts in Great Britain. He also composes orchestral works. In 2012 Hopkins released a classic music CD called “The Composer”. His works are performed by the Birmingham City Symphony Orchestra.
Resources: people.com, PAP, Reuters