The new film Barney's Version features Paul Giamatti conquering a dare-you-to-like-me role as a thrice-married boozer with impulse control issues. But the actor still vividly remembers his first extreme part -- because it was his first paycheck.
"I did a play at this place called La MaMa in New York City, this avant-garde crazy theater," the American Splendor and Sideways star told WalletPop at the Toronto International Film Festival. "I got to play a legless monk with leprosy. It was only $300 bucks for the whole run of the thing. I couldn't believe someone was paying me $300."
Asked if he could recall how he spent it, he answered, "I used it to pay rent."
Giamatti, an Oscar nominee for Cinderella Man and Emmy winner for the miniseries John Adams, doesn't have to worry these days about where his next payday is coming from. And he doesn't want you to either. His advice for how to land a job in any field?
"Don't listen to anybody's advice," he said. "Everybody gave me way too much advice and I ignored most of it. I have a feeling that if I had followed it, it would have made me uptight."
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