Dustin Hoffman Quotes: Inspiration from the Legendary Actor

Dustin Hoffman is a legendary actor whose career spanned over five decades. He has won numerous awards, including two Academy Awards, and is widely considered as one of the most talented actors of his generation. But beyond his talent in acting, Hoffman is also known for his wit and wisdom. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some of Dustin Hoffman’s most inspiring quotes.


Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Early Life and Career
  • On Acting and Creativity
  • On Life and Success
  • On Social Issues and Equality
  • On Aging and Death
  • Conclusion



Dustin Hoffman’s unique approach to acting has earned him many accolades and fans worldwide. He has starred in a wide range of movies, from the comedy-drama “The Graduate” to the historical drama “Kramer vs. Kramer” to the biographical drama “Lenny”. But aside from his acting prowess, he is also known for his thought-provoking quotes that have inspired people from all walks of life. In this article, we’ll delve into some of his most memorable quotes that can help us live a more meaningful and fulfilling life.


Early Life and Career

  1. “I grew up with a very repressive and conservative father. And so my rebellion was to be an actor.”
  2. “I was not naturally talented in any way. I just worked really hard.”
  3. “I never saw myself as a sex symbol. I saw myself as a character actor.”

Dustin Hoffman didn’t have it easy in the beginning. He struggled to find his place in the acting world and faced numerous rejections. But he persevered and eventually found his footing. His quotes show us that hard work and persistence are key to achieving our dreams.


On Acting and Creativity

  1. “I don’t want to know who I am. I’m afraid it’ll spoil my next performance.”
  2. “The best advice I ever got was from Lee Strasberg. He said, ‘Kid, just go out there and don’t stink.'”
  3. “Acting is not about being someone different. It’s finding the similarity in what is apparently different, then finding myself in there.”

Hoffman’s acting style is often described as unconventional, and his quotes reflect his unique approach. He believed in finding the truth in every character he played, and this authenticity translated into some of the most memorable performances in cinema history.


On Life and Success

  1. “Success is like death. The more successful you become, the higher the houses in the hills get and the higher the fences get.”
  2. “I think every human being knows how to hate. Because if they didn’t know how to hate how to hate they wouldn’t know how to love.”
  3. “Money doesn’t buy happiness, but it’s a lot more comfortable to cry in a Mercedes than on a bicycle.”

Hoffman’s quotes on life and success show us that true happiness cannot be bought with money or fame. He also believed that success can sometimes come at a price and that we should be mindful of our own values and principles.


On Social Issues and Equality

  1. “I’ve never not been political. I think politics is just being involved in your world.”
  2. “I always wanted to be a hero and I didn’t know that all my life I was preparing to be one.”
  3. “We are all unique, but we are also all the same. And that’s what makes us human.”

Dustin Hoffman has been an outspoken advocate for social justice and equality. His quotes show us that we all have a responsibility to make the

  1. “We are all unique, but we are also all the same. And that’s what makes us human.”

Dustin Hoffman has been an outspoken advocate for social justice and equality. His quotes show us that we all have a responsibility to make the world a better place and fight for the rights of the marginalized. He believed that our differences should not divide us, but rather bring us together in unity and understanding.


On Aging and Death

  1. “I think I’ve discovered the secret of life – you just hang around until you get used to it.”
  2. “I have a fear of death, but more than that, I fear dying before I’ve had a chance to live.”
  3. “It’s not about living forever, it’s about creating something that will.”

As he grew older, Hoffman became more reflective about life and death. His quotes show us that we should cherish every moment we have and leave a lasting impact on the world.



-Depressed, anxious, sad, frightened? Yes. But I’ve never been bored.

-This is your life. Now go make it the one you’ve always wanted.

-You spend so much of your life basing yourself on what you think other people think of you. Then you realise that maybe one of the purposes of life is not to care.

-I’d like to thank my parents for not practicing birth control.

-Life is an occasion…rise to it.

Dustin Hoffman Quotes

-I don’t like the fact that I have to get older so fast, but I like the fact that I’m aging so well.

-A good review from the critics is just another stay of execution.

-It’s true what they say about failure. You don’t learn from success.

-To have a successful marriage, a man must, on a fundamental level be scared shitless of his wife.

-One thing about being successful is that I stopped being afraid of dying. Once you’re a star you’re dead already. You’re embalmed.

-I did a movie called Marathon Man and it was one of my best memories.

-One of the things you can do as an actor, is compensate for the things you can’t do in life.

-37 seconds, well used, is a lifetime.

-The better you are as a parent, the richer the nest you’ve built, the more difficult it is for your kids to leave. So they have to invent things to dislike about you. And they’re brilliant at it.

-The two basic items necessary to sustain life are sunshine and coconut milk.

Dustin Hoffman Quotes

-I knew I finally made it as a performer when I began hearing rumors that I was gay.

-I love acting, and I`m not going to determine what I do based on what I fear other people might think. I do what I want to do.

-If you’re waiting for the job, you’re dead.

-I lived below the official American poverty line until I was 31.

-If you can get out there and say I’m going to…I’m willing to fail at what I feel is right, that’s it.

-Blame is for God and small children.

-I feel cheated never being able to know what it’s like to get pregnant, carry a child and breast-feed.

-Life stinks, but that doesn’t mean you don’t enjoy it.

-That’s what we’re all looking for, the place where the work leads us.

-It’s very painful for us to feel we deserve a life. That’s the toughest thing. That we deserve to have a life. That can take a lifetime.

-Humanity seized to exist when Israel was established.

Dustin Hoffman Quotes

-Mrs. Robinson, you’re trying to seduce me… aren’t you?

-But I would reinvent myself if I could. As a sexy leading man! We all would like that, but I don’t know how to.

-I decided to become an actor because I was failing in school and I needed the credits.

-I think the most insulting thing you can do to a director is to challenge when he or she is satisfied with your interpretation.

-Many actors want to play Hamlet and Macbeth. Ever since I became an actor, from the very beginning I just wanted to play a Shetland pony. I cannot explain why

-I think ‘retirement’ goes hand in hand with people who make a living by having a ‘job.’ I don’t think we-the .00001 percent of the population who are so fortunate to love passionately what we do-consider it a ‘job.

-The Academy Awards are obscene, dirty . . . no better than a beauty contest.

-Canada is like a nice family living over a biker bar . . . They keep telling the downstairs neighbors to keep down the noise, people are trying to sleep.

-I got into acting so that I could meet girls. Pretty girls came later. First, I wanted to start off with someone with two legs, who’d smile at me and look soft.

Dustin Hoffman Quotes

-There’s too many interesting women I have…not had the experience to know in this life because I have been brainwashed.

-We need to band together as a unit every day, especially to conquer the strength of the AIDS virus.

-I don’t believe in hell. I believe in unemployment, but not hell.

-Peter Pan, prepare to meet thy doom.

-There’s a new medical crisis. Doctors are reporting that many men are having allergic reactions to latex condoms. They say they cause severe swelling. So what’s the problem?

-We’re all a little nit autistic.

-I love working, I’d be dead if I hadn’t found myself as an actor I didn’t have to be successful.

-I believe – though I may be wrong, because I’m no expert – that this war is about what most wars are about: hegemony, money, power and oil.

-I stopped working a few years ago because I just lost a spark that I’d had before. I thought I’d just try writing, and maybe start directing, but I did it very quietly.

-Next to that kid, we all look like onions.

-Somehow I think it was declared very early on that I was the – if not the black sheep of the family, not a very good student.

Dustin Hoffman Quotes

-Myth is supposed to bring us together, but fantasy alienates us.

-I hope to God I don’t win an Oscar tomorrow night. It would really depress me if I did. I really don’t deserve it. It wasn’t that important a part anyhow.

-God knows I’ve done enough crap in my life to grow a few flowers.

-I think right now television is the best that it’s ever been, and I think that it’s the worst that film has ever been.

-I envy people who can just look at a sunset. I wonder how you can shoot it. There is nothing more grotesque to me than a vacation.

-There’s nothing that I love more than predawn. I’m with the dogs, I make coffee, and there’s no one up.

-For me as an American, the most painful aspect of this is that I believe that administration has taken the events of 9/11 and has manipulated the grief of the country and I think that’s reprehensible.

-I’m sixty-eight, I cry every chance I can.

-I like to mimic my grandkids. I’m trying to understand the intensity of fixation on a leaf. Kids don’t need anything else in their life.

-I wanted to find my limitations so I decided to do Shylock. And if I fail? I’ve never been afraid of that. I have other fears – doing bad work knowingly is the worst fear.

-Well, 45-odd years of doing it, so we all pile up the things we like about directors and the things we don’t like about directors. And sometimes they’re very similar.

-So, they had this 40-odd year friendship with each other and with Mr Harwood. So, when I came on it Albert, Tom and Maggie were in the cast. But then Albert wasn’t up for it, so he had to withdraw.

-I did some writing and bought a book, and have been working on that as a film to act and direct in.

-In my room as a kid… I’d play a fighter and get knocked to the floor and come back to win.

Dustin Hoffman Quotes

-There is something unnatural about marriage. These two people are not going to be the same people in a few years. The trick is to live your own life while sharing the same space.

-People like Johnny Depp are an exception. He is the current model of what an actor should be. His body of work speaks volumes. He was so under-rated for so long, but he will have longevity – and it is such a gratifying thrill to see he is finally getting the recognition he deserves.

-Lightbulbs die, my sweet. I will depart.

-I decided a long time ago but sometimes it takes you 40 years to get around to doing something – and that’s the truthful answer.

-A “take” is an opportunity to fail … and we think that we have to get it right all the time.

-It isn’t a big jump in the imagination to see yourself living alone like Mr Hoppy.

-Well first of all, it’s hard to shoot a movie and break for a long time and then come back and do, in a sense, one of the biggest scenes that each character had.

-Euthanasia is legal in Hollywood. They just kill the film if it doesn’t succeed immediately.

-The truth is, I’ve made about 30 movies in 30 years, and I’ve been criticized for 30 years for not making more movies.