With a unique tone and identifiable but unorthodox inflection, it’s difficult to read Christopher Walken quotes without hearing his distinctive voice. It seems that everything he says, whether from a movie or off camera, is a quotable line.
Ronald Walken was born in Astoria, Queens, New York in the middle of World War II in 1943. His destiny was sealed when he was named Ronald after Ronald Coleman, an English theater actor and silent movie star.
And his life of acting wouldn’t take long to gain its meteoric rise.
In 1964, he changed his name from Ronnie to Christopher. In the 1970’s, his television notoriety gained popularity as he won parts in popular series such as Valley Forge, The Sentinel, and Kojac. The natural ability of the gritty New Yorker to gain parts in detective and police shows took hold with ease. Theater was also part of Walken’s repertoire; he the won Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Performance for his part in Lanford Wilson’s off-Broadway production of Lemon Sky.
From the popularity gained in the 1970’s and from winning his Oscar for The Deer Hunter, Christopher Walken’s career in the 1980’s and after would grow more diverse. Ranging from the obscure sci-fi thrillers to the gritty New York gangster and detective films, Walken would masterfully navigate the variety of characters with skill and his performances were executed with excellence rarely found.
There was no slowing down for Christopher Walken in the 1990’s either.
In fact, he increased his on-screen presence to thirty-eight acting roles, two video game appearances, and one animated movie voice over role, which included many unforgettable scenes including some of his most memorable moments in Pulp Fiction as Captain Koons, True Romance as Vincenzo Coccotti, and as the man simply known as “the man with the plan” in Things to Do in Denver When You’re Dead.
During the 1990’s, and through his seven guest appearances until 2008, Christopher Walken’s fame as a comedy virtuoso peaked with his Saturday Night Live performances that made him a legendary guest with some of their funniest sketches to date. From Colonel Angus, to The Continental, and who can forget his skit as Bruce Dickinson, Blue Oyster Cult’s producer who persistently demanded “MORE COWBELL”, Walken had audiences doubled over laughing at his idiosyncrasies and awkward comic delivery style. Of all the guest hosts, his performances as guest host are only outnumbered by six others, two of which were former cast.
His performances as guest host are often regarded as the best and SNL even produced a best of video for Walken’s performances.
Even today, he’s still a big box office draw and has fans from far and wide that admire him any time he graces the silver screen. And there are many Christopher Walken quotes from his interviews to his acting performances that resonate with the masses.
Christopher Walken’s body of work is truly amazing, is vastly broad in scope, and is marked with a powerful presence. Whether in a play, television series, movie, video game, or even music video, every performance of his is captivating. His performances will remain legendary and have set the mark of a true renaissance performer that can play any part from comedy, science fiction, thriller, to drama, gritty detective shows, or even a dance. Walken’s legendary presence and idiosyncratic delivery has made him truly one of longevity, highly prolific, and one of the brightest stars of all time.
Enjoy this collection of Christopher Walken quotes from the uniquely talented living legend.
1. “There are people who are able to plan their career, their future, but I’ve never had any talent for that. I just do things and hope for the best. Say yes, take a chance, and sometimes it’s terrific and sometimes it’s not.”
2. “My hair was famous before I was.”
3. “I like cats a lot. I’ve always liked cats. They’re great company. When they eat, they always leave a little bit at the bottom of the bowl. A dog will polish the bowl, but a cat always leaves a little bit. It’s like an offering.”
4. “At its best, life is completely unpredictable.”
5. “I don’t carry lucky charms, but I believe in those things.”
6. “Obviously an actor draws on his own experience.”
7. “I’d love to do a character with a wife, a nice little house, a couple of kids, a dog, maybe a bit of singing, and no guns and no killing, but nobody offers me those kind of parts.”
8. “I have a friend of mine who does me on his answering machine, and when I call him, I answer. It’s pretty strange.”
9. “I love spaghetti. And I like to cook spaghetti. And I used to eat it every day. I weighed thirty pounds more than I do now. You can’t – you can’t do that.”
10. “I don’t play lovers. I wish I did. At least once I’d like to have a crack at one of those guys. A heartbreaker. Some people are born to it. I’m not.”
11. “I got to playing villains-I don’t know how. I think it’s like anything else, in the movies in particular that if you establish yourself as something and you’re lucky enough to keep getting hired. You know, there are guys who play the guy who gets the girl, guys who are the best friend of that guy, there’s the funny guy, the villain.”
12.“No, improvising is wonderful. But, the thing is that you cannot improvise unless you know exactly what you’re doing.”
13. “I have this theory about words. There’s a thousand ways to say ‘Pass the salt’. It could mean, you know, ‘Can I have some salt?’ or it could mean, ‘I love you.’ It could mean, ‘I’m very annoyed with you’. Really, the list could go on and on. Words are little bombs, and they have a lot of energy inside them.”
14. “I try not to worry about things I can’t do anything about.”
15. “Somebody said to me that I speak English almost like somebody for whom English is not their first language.”
16. “Emotional power is maybe the most valuable thing that an actor can have.”
17. “I think that weddings have probably been crashed since the beginning of time. Cavemen crashed them. You go to meet girls. It makes sense.”