William H Macy on Philip Seymour Hoffman: “I See His Pain”

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William H Macy

Even if “the weight of living was higher on Phil than it is on most people,” William H Macy still has nothing but respect for his “Boogie Nights” co-star.

Even though it has been eight years since Philip Seymour Hoffman‘s untimely death, the Oscar winner’s legacy lives on in his films and in the hearts of his fellow actors. Co-star William H Macy commented on Hoffman’s acting genius and the issues that plagued him in a recent interview with Vulture.

To quote Macy: “He was the finest of us; he was never awful.” in reference to Hoffman. “And maybe it’s just hindsight, but I can tell he was in anguish. Phil seemed to carry the burden of life more heavily than other individuals.

William H Macy Reflects on Working

Philip Seymour Hoffman

William H Macy claimed that the two performers previously had an argument over method acting, a hot issue in Hollywood right now. The dialogue opened Macy’s eyes to Hoffman’s vulnerability, even as they differed about how to proceed.

Somebody inquired about preparation when we were on a panel together at Sundance with ‘State and Main,’ Macy remarked. Nothing I need to know is in the script, so I don’t spend much time preparing. You don’t have to immerse yourself in the role; the character is just a joke we put on the audience. You’re not acting; you’re mentally sick. Also, Phil was not in agreement.

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Noting that he believed there were ways to break out into the world, he answered, “No. Whatever it is, you need to look inside, and I believe you need to immerse yourself in its universe. We had an engaging back-and-forth until I stopped to ask myself, “What am I saying to him?” He said, “Thank you, and I believe you do it, too, regardless of what you say.” I told him, “Whatever you do is fucking wonderful all the time.” It was a glimpse into the depths of his emotions, however.

William H Macy Reflects on Working

William H Macy often recalls Hoffman’s compelling performance in Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Boogie Nights,” even though it has been 25 years since they both appeared in the picture.

William H Macy added, “I think of him in ‘Boogie Nights,’ when he walks up in those clothes that are too tiny, clutching the clipboard close to his breast, and biting on the pencil when he attempts to flirt with Dirk Diggler; it’s devastating. And it was the last time I ever saw him in that role. After that, he was cast as the protagonist with more depth and complexity. Indeed, I can’t imagine anything he couldn’t do.