Veteran actor Jeff Daniels has taken on a number of different roles throughout his decades in Hollywood. Of course he is probably most widely known for his turn as Harry Dunn, in the classic comedy, Dumb and Dumber. However, Daniels has proven to be so much more than a comedy actor. Daniels recently spoke with Collider, and discussed how his role as Will McAvoy on the series The Newsroom, unexpectedly changed his career.
“I couldn’t have predicted that. I knew it would help. I was to the point where it was like, ‘How long do I want to keep doing this? At what point do I play the role that I really don’t want to play, for very little money, standing next to some 28-year-old who’s making $10 million? Am I really gonna do that? I don’t think so.’ And then, Aaron Sorkin called. That Northwestern speech was as important to my career as getting cast in the Woody Allen movie, The Purple Rose of Cairo, when I was 30. To me, it was of equal importance, as far as what it did for my career, but you’ve still gotta come through. That Northwestern speech was just a great speech. Now, that speech will outlive me and Aaron. Whatever YouTube is, 50 years from now, you will be able to see it. That, I didn’t see coming. The Emmy, I didn’t see coming. In fact, I was told, ‘Just go for the salmon.’ It took two or three years before [James] Gandolfini was even considered, so HBO told me to just enjoy the meal. That was a shocker.”
The speech that Daniels is referring to was an insanely brilliant bit of both writing and acting. I’ve lost count of how many times I have had to inform people who shared his speech on social media as if it were real, that it wasn’t, I guess that shows how good it is.
Daniels can now be seen in The Looming Tower. Which is a TV adaptation of the Lawrence Wright novel, The Looming Tower: Al Qaeda and the Road to 9/11.
Do you prefer Daniels do comedy or drama? Let us know in the comments down below!
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