In Klaus Kinski’s Words: Great Actor as a Violinist

If I was doing a movie that was really bad, I always realized that I had to play my role as good as possible when the camera was on me. The fact that the movie was total shit did not bother me. For example, let’s say that there’s a hand that is used to playing the violin excellently. Let’s say that hand belongs to the world’s greatest violinist. But, the man finds himself out of work. Someone tells him “I don’t have a job for a violinist but I do have a job for someone who is willing to carry out trash”. The violinist takes the job. He has to do his new job well or else he won’t get paid. He won’t eat. Although his hand is forced to carry garbage, that doesn’t diminish the skill of the hand.

Klaus Kinski

The irony lies in the fact that Kinski (a great actor) played the world’s greatest violinist (Paganini) in a bad movie, the 1989 film Paganini: he was also the director of the film. Kinski persistently asked of Werner Herzog to direct the film, but Herzog insisted on the idea that the script was “unfilmable”. Kinski believed that Paganini and himself were very much alike since both of them delivered “daemonic performances” in their own artistic spheres, which were often contradictory.

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