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22 Awesome and Inspiring Bill Murray Quotes

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Sure, Bill Murray has done his fair share of hilariously random and weird things. But in addition to having a killer sense of humor, the actor is pretty deep—as these quotes show.

1. ON WHAT IT’S LIKE TO BE BILL MURRAY, PART ONE

“Nothing prepared me for being this awesome. It's kind of a shock. It's kind of a shock to wake up every morning and be bathed in this purple light.”

— From a 2014 Reddit AMA

2. ON WHAT IT’S LIKE TO BE BILL MURRAY, PART TWO

“There's a wonderful sense of well-being that begins to circulate . . . up and down your spine. And you feel something that makes you almost want to smile. So what's it like to be me? Ask yourself, ‘What's it like to be me?’ The only way we'll ever know what it's like to be you is if you work your best at being you as often as you can, and keep reminding yourself that's where home is.”

— From a 2014 Q&A during Canada’s Bill Murray Day, via Rolling Stone

3. ON HOW HE LIVES HIS LIFE

“I live a little bit on the seat of my pants, I try to be alert and available ... for life to happen to me. We’re in this life, and if you’re not available, the sort of ordinary time goes past and you didn’t live it. But if you’re available, life gets huge. You’re really living it.”

— From an interview with Charlie Rose, via Flavorwire

4. ON BEING RELAXED

“The more relaxed you are, the better you are at everything: the better you are with your loved ones, the better you are with your enemies, the better you are at your job, the better you are with yourself.”

— From a 2012 interview with The New York Times

5. ON BEING AN ACTOR

“I don't believe that you can give the same performance every take. It's physically impossible, so why bother? If you don't do what is happening at that moment, then it's not real. Then you're holding something back.”

— From a 1984 interview with Rolling Stone

6. ON MARRIAGE

“If you have someone that you think is The One, don't just sort of think in your ordinary mind, ‘OK, let's pick a date. Let's plan this and make a party and get married.’ Take that person and travel around the world. Buy a plane ticket for the two of you to travel all around the world, and go to places that are hard to go to and hard to get out of. And if, when you come back to JFK ... you're still in love with that person, get married at the airport.”

— From an impromptu speech at a stranger’s bachelor party, via Huffington Post 

7. ON HIS INTERACTIONS WITH THE PUBLIC

“My hope, always, is that it's going to wake me up. I'm only connected for seconds, minutes a day, sometimes. And suddenly, you go, ‘Holy cow, I've been asleep for two days. I've been doing things, but I'm just out.’ If I see someone who's out cold on their feet, I'm going to try to wake that person up. It's what I'd want someone to do for me. Wake me the hell up and come back to the planet.”

— From a 2014 interview with Rolling Stone 

8. ON ACTING CLASS VS. LIVE IMPROV

“If you go to actors' class, you don't really die, because there's never really an audience. But if you work for Second City, there's an audience, and you die in the improv set five times out of nine. So, once you get over your fear of dying, nothing else ever really scares you. And Saturday Night Live was as tough as Second City. Once you get through those, making movies is a joke.”

 — From a 1990 interview with Roger Ebert

9. ON SEINFELD

“I never had seen Seinfeld, and they said, ‘Oh, it’s the last episode.’ And I said, ‘Oh, I’ll watch Seinfeld.’ And it was terrible.”

— From a 2014 interview with Howard Stern

10. ON WHEN FAME IS A GOOD THING

“There's only a couple times when fame is ever helpful. Sometimes you can get into a restaurant where the kitchen is just closing. Sometimes you can avoid a traffic violation. But the only time it really matters is in the emergency room with your kids. That's when you want to be noticed, because it's very easy to get forgotten in an ER. It's the only time when I would ever say, ‘Thank God. Thank God.’ There's no other time.” 

— From a 2012 interview with Esquire

11. ON HIS NOTORIOUS INACCESSIBILITY

“A moat can be a pretty good thing. It can be lovely. It keeps rodents away from the castle. It can have fish in it. Even fish that talk. … If you give people access, they take advantage. My phone would ring 75 times in a row. Finally, I would pick it up and say, ‘Who the hell is this?’ ‘Oh, hi! I’m calling from so-and-so’s office…’ What kind of person would ever, ever let the phone ring 75 times? And I guess that’s when I started thinking: ­I can do without these people.” 

— From a 2013 interview with TimeOut London

12. ON BEING AN ARTIST

“It's hard to be an artist. It's hard to be anything. It's hard to be.”

— From a 2014 interview with The Independent

13. ON HIS FATHERING TIPS

“If you bite on everything they throw at you, they will grind you down. You have to ignore a certain amount of stuff. The thing I keep saying to them lately is: ‘I have to love you, and I have the right to ignore you.’ When my kids ask what I want for my birthday or Christmas or whatever, I use the same answer my father did: ‘Peace and quiet.’ That was never a satisfactory answer to me as a kid—I wanted an answer like ‘A pipe.’ But now I see the wisdom of it: All I want is you at your best—you making this an easier home to live in, you thinking of others.”

— From a 2012 interview with Esquire

14. ON PREPARING FOR HIS ROLES

“I’m not that organized. I’m not one of those guys. I mean you read it, you look at it, and you go: I have that in me, I can do that. I don’t necessarily get all mental. There are people that are working with you on every level and on a movie you’re working with people that are, ideally, all serving the same goal and that’s what helps me get into a role.”

— From an interview with The Talks

15. ON HIS MOTHER

“My mother is a real character, a talkative soul who can make friends with anyone, and she'd always been a massive influence on me. She's so animated, I even used to tape phone conversations with her in order to steal material!”

— From a 1988 interview with The New York Times

16. ON MAKING MOVIES

“[I]t's an amazing triumph even to make a bad movie. Even a crap film is really an extraordinary achievement. You're taking a two-dimensional object and making it three-dimensional. The number of people. The number of days. The number of cuts.”

— From a 2012 interview with Esquire

17. ON GILDA RADNER

“Gilda was a fantastic laugher. I never enjoyed making anyone laugh more than her. I remember one day, I made her laugh so hard, she thought she was going to die. And I just couldn’t stop. I used to be really funny, and in those days I used to have almost like a vengeful thing; I could go for a long period of time and try to be funny. I don’t do it like I used to. And I miss that. I’m still funny, but back then I would take something and not let go of it.”

— From Live in New York, via Vanity Fair

18. ON SENTIMENTALITY

“Sentimentality to me is a symbol that we've left the planet. OK, bye-bye. Let me know when you come back because you're no longer here. You left. It reminds of being at a funeral, like my dad dies and the grief is just overpowering. And all anyone can say to you is, ‘Well, he's probably up there in heaven, bowling with Uncle George.’ It's like, ‘Yeah, that's probably it. He's up there bowling with Uncle George.’ He's dead. He's gone. What am I going to do? Talk to ME. Don't make up your own dreamscape. Stay here with me, will you? Don't go away.”

— From a 2014 interview with The New York Times

19. ON PREPARING TO PLAY FDR

“I’ve always tried to be a little bit loose. This great director we had at Second City [Del Close] said: ‘You wear your characters like a trench coat. It’s still you in there, but there’s like a trench coat.’ So I figured this was like a winter trench coat, because there was just a little bit more character that comes to the party. So I did a lot more reading, a lot more studying.”

— From a 2012 interview with The New York Times

20. ON SAYING NO

“It’s extremely powerful to say no; it’s really the most powerful thing to say.”

— From a 2012 interview with the Washington Post

21. ON FAILURE

“Don't think about your errors or failures, otherwise you'll never do a thing.”

— From a 2005 interview with The Guardian

22. ON HOW TO LIVE LIFE

“As I once said to one of my brothers, ‘This is your life, not a rehearsal.’ Somewhere there’s a score being kept, so you have an obligation to live life as well as you can, be as engaged as you can. The human condition means that we can zone out and forget what the hell we’re doing. So the secret is to have a sense of yourself, your real self, your unique self. And not just once in a while, or once a day, but all through the day, the week and life. You know what they say: ‘Ain’t no try, ain’t nothing to it but to do it.’”

— From a 2013 interview with TimeOut London

All images courtesy of Getty

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10 Regional Twists on Trick-or-Treating
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Walk around any given American neighborhood on the night of October 31, and you’ll likely hear choruses of "trick-or-treat" chiming through the area. The sing-songy phrase is synonymous with Halloween in some parts of the world, but it's not the only way kids get sweets from their neighbors this time of year. From the Philippines to the American Midwest, here are some regional door-to-door traditions you may not have heard of.

1. PANGANGALULUWA // THE PHILIPPINES

Rice cakes wrapped in leaves.
Suman

The earliest form of trick-or-treating on Halloween can be traced back to Europe in the Middle Ages. Kids would don costumes and go door-to-door offering prayers for dead relatives in exchange for snacks called "soul cakes." When the cake was eaten, tradition held that a soul was ferried from purgatory into heaven. Souling has disappeared from Ireland and the UK, but a version of it lives on halfway across the world in the Philippines. During All Saints Day on November 1, Filipino children taking part in Pangangaluluwa will visit local houses and sing hymns for alms. The songs often relate to souls in purgatory, and carolers will play the part of the souls by asking for prayers. Kids are sometimes given rice cakes called suman, a callback to the soul cakes from centuries past.

2. PÃO-POR-DEUS // PORTUGAL

Raw dough.
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Instead of trick-or-treating, kids in Portugal go door-to-door saying pão-por-deus ("bread for god") in exchange for goodies on All Saints Day. Some homeowners give out money or candy, while others offer actual baked goods.

3. HALLOWEEN APPLES // WESTERN CANADA

Kids trick-or-treating.
iStock

If they're not calling out "trick-or-treat" on their neighbors’ doorsteps on Halloween night, you may hear children in western Canada saying "Halloween apples!" The phrase is left over from a time when apples were a common Halloween treat and giving out loose items on the holiday wasn't considered taboo.

4. ST. MARTIN'S DAY // THE NETHERLANDS

The Dutch wait several days after Halloween to do their own take on trick-or-treating. On the night of November 11, St. Martin's Day, children in the Netherlands take to the streets with their homemade lanterns in hand. These lanterns were traditionally carved from beets or turnips, but today they’re most commonly made from paper. And the kids who partake don’t get away with shouting a few words at each home they visit—they’re expected to sing songs to receive their sugary rewards.

5. A PENNY FOR THE GUY // THE UK

Guy Fawkes Night celebration.

Peter Trimming, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 2.0

Guy Fawkes Night is seen by some as the English Protestants’ answer to the Catholic holidays associated with Halloween, so it makes sense that it has its own spin on trick-or-treating. November 5 marks the day of Guy Fawkes’s failed assassination attempt on King James as part of the Gunpowder Plot. To celebrate the occasion, children will tour the neighborhood asking for "a penny for the guy." Sometimes they’ll carry pictures of the would-be-assassin which are burned in the bonfires lit later at night.

6. TRICKS FOR TREATS // ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI

Kids knocking on a door in costume.
iStock

If kids in the St. Louis area hope to go home with a full bag of candy on Halloween, they must be willing to tickle some funny bones. Saying "tricks-for-treats" followed by a joke replaces the classic trick-or-treat mantra in this Midwestern city. There’s no criteria for the quality or the subject of the joke, but spooky material (What’s a skeleton’s favorite instrument? The trombone!) earns brownie points.

7. ME DA PARA MI CALAVERITA // MEXICO

Sugar skulls with decoration.
iStock

While Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is completely separate from Halloween, the two holidays share a few things in common. Mexicans celebrate the day by dressing up, eating sweet treats, and in some parts of the country, going house-to-house. Children knocking on doors will say "me da para mi calaverita" or "give me money for my little skull," a reference to the decorated sugar skulls sold in markets at this time of year.

8. HALLOWEEN! // QUEBEC, CANADA

Kids dressed up for Halloween.
iStock

Trick-or-treaters like to keep things simple in the Canadian province of Quebec. In place of the alliterative exclamation, they shout “Halloween!” at each home they visit. Adults local to the area might remember saying "la charité s’il-vous-plaît "(French for “charity, please”) when going door-to-door on Halloween, but this saying has largely fallen out of fashion.

9. SWEET OR SOUR // GERMANY

Little girl trick-or-treating.
iStock

Halloween is only just beginning to gain popularity in Germany. Where it is celebrated, the holiday looks a lot like it does in America, but Germans have managed to inject some local character into their version of trick-or-treat. In exchange for candy, kids sometimes sing out "süß oder saures"—or "sweet and sour" in English.

10. TRIQUI, TRIQUI HALLOWEEN // COLOMBIA

Kids dressed up for Halloween.
Rubí Flórez, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Kids in Colombia anticipate dressing up and prowling the streets on Halloween just as much as kids do in the States. There are a few significant variations on the annual tradition: Instead of visiting private residencies, they're more likely to ask for candy from store owners and the security guards of apartment buildings. And instead of saying trick-or-treat, they recite this Spanish rhyme:

Triqui triqui Halloween
Quiero dulces para mí
Si no hay dulces para mí
Se le crece la naríz

In short, it means that if the grownups don't give the kids the candy they're asking for, their noses will grow. Tricky, tricky indeed

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11 Thrilling Facts About Dial M for Murder
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In 1953 Alfred Hitchcock was looking for a new project after a film he’d been developing fell through. Sensing a need to go back to his safe space of murderous thrillers, he opted to adapt a stage play that had already proved to be a hit on British television. Though he had no particular attachment to the project, Dial M for Murder would ultimately become one of Hitchcock’s best-known—and best-loved—classics.

From the film’s use of 3D to the debut of Grace Kelly in Hitchcock’s filmography to a pivotal murder sequence that made the director lose weight from stress, here are 11 facts about Dial M for Murder.

1. IT’S BASED ON A STAGE PLAY.

Dial M for Murder is, in terms of locations and number of characters, a relatively sparse film that barely leaves its primary set. This is because it was based on a stage play by Frederick Knott, which premiered as a BBC TV special in 1952 and later opened at London’s Westminster Theater and, eventually, Broadway. After seeing the BBC production, producer Sir Alexander Korda purchased the rights to make the film version, and later sold them to Warner Bros. for $75,000.

2. ALFRED HITCHCOCK THOUGHT HE WAS “COASTING” WHEN HE MADE THE FILM.

By 1953, when Dial M for Murder arrived at Warner Bros., Hitchcock was developing a project called The Bramble Bush, the story of a man who steals another man’s passport, only to find out that the original owner is wanted for murder. Hitchcock wrestled with the story for a while, but was never satisfied with it. When Dial M for Murder landed at the studio, Hitchcock knew the play had been a hit, and opted to direct it. As he later told fellow director François Truffaut, he found the film to be “coasting, playing it safe,” as he was already known as a thriller filmmaker.

3. IT’S HITCHCOCK’S ONLY 3D FILM.

In the early 1950s, the 3D movie craze was raging, and Warner Bros. was eager to pair it with the fame of Hitchcock. So, the director was ordered to use the process on Dial M for Murder. This meant Hitchcock had to work with the giant cameras necessary for the process, but there was also a trade-off that makes the film fascinating—even in 2D. In order to make the film look appropriately interesting in 3D, Hitchcock added a pit into the floor of the set, so the camera could move at lower angles and captures objects like lamps in the foreground. As a result, the film looks like no other Hitchcock ever shot, particularly for the infamous scissors murder that’s the film's thrilling centerpiece. Unfortunately, by the time Dial M for Murder was released in 1954, the 3D fad was dying out, so the film was shown in 2D at most screenings.

4. IT WAS HITCHCOCK’S FIRST FILM WITH GRACE KELLY.

Of all of the iconic blonde stars Hitchcock cast in his films, the most famous is almost undoubtedly Grace Kelly, the actress-turned-princess who first joined him for this film. Hitchcock once described Kelly as a "rare thing in movies ... fit for any leading-lady part,” and it was said he had the easiest working relationship with her of any star. They worked so well together that they went on to make two more films, Rear Window in 1954 and To Catch a Thief in 1955.

5. IT TAKES PLACE ALMOST ENTIRELY INDOORS.

Because Dial M for Murder is based on a stage play, the original script had very little in the way of outdoor set pieces. Hitchcock wanted to keep it that way, as he later explained to Truffaut:

“I’ve got a theory on the way they make pictures based on stage plays; they did it with silent pictures, too. Many filmmakers would take a stage play and say, ‘I’m going to make this into a film.’ Then they would begin to ‘open it up.’ In other words, on the stage it was all confined to one set, and the idea was to do something that would take it away from the confined stage setting.”

Hitchcock wanted to keep the confinement intact, so almost all of the action in the film takes place indoors, largely in the Wendices' apartment. This adds to the intimacy and tension.

6. HITCHCOCK PERSONALLY CHOSE EVERY PROP.

Hitchcock was always known as a meticulous director obsessed with detail, but on Dial M for Murder he was particularly detail-oriented, in part because the 3D cameras were going to capture objects in a way his other films hadn’t. As a result, he selected all of the objects in the Wendice apartment himself, and even had a giant false telephone dial made for the famous “M” close-up in the title sequence.

7. KELLY’S WARDROBE GROWS DARKER ON PURPOSE.

Grace Kelly in 'Dial M for Murder' (1954)
Warner Home Video

Hitchcock’s exacting eye also led to an elaborate “color experiment” to portray the psychological condition of Kelly’s character. As the film begins, the colors she wears are all very bright, suggesting a happy life in which she doesn’t suspect anything is wrong. As the film grows darker for her, to the point that she’s framed for murder, the wardrobe grows darker and “more somber,” as Hitchcock put it.

8. KELLY WON A PARTICULAR WARDROBE ARGUMENT.

For the scene in which Swann (Anthony Dawson) attempts to murder Margot (Kelly) by strangling her (until she manages to stab him with a pair of scissors), Hitchcock had another exacting wardrobe request. He had an elegant velvet robe made for Kelly, hoping to create interesting textural effects as the lights and shadows played off the fabric while she fought for her life. Kelly reasoned that, since Margot was alone in the apartment (as far as she knew) and was only getting out of bed to answer the phone, she wouldn’t bother to put on a robe.

“I said I wouldn't put on anything at all, that I'd just get up and go to the phone in my nightgown. And [Hitchcock] admitted that was better, and that's the way it was done,” Kelly later recalled.

9. HITCHCOCK WAS SO NERVOUS ABOUT THE PIVOTAL SCENE THAT HE LOST WEIGHT.

Dial M for Murder was shot in just 36 days, but the director took special care with one scene in particular: the murder sequence in which Margot stabs Swann with the scissors. Not only was it a key scene in the film, but it was also a moment that required particular care to make the 3D effects work. Hitchcock agonized over the scene to such a degree that he apparently lost 20 pounds during filming.

"This is nicely done but there wasn't enough gleam to the scissors, and a murder without gleaming scissors is like asparagus without the hollandaise sauce—tasteless,” he reportedly said after one take.

10. HITCHCOCK MAKES HIS CAMEO IN A PHOTOGRAPH.

Hitchcock became known throughout his career for making cameos in his films, ranging from the very subtle (you can see his silhouette in neon outside the window in Rope) to the more elaborate (missing the bus in the opening sequence of North by Northwest). In Dial M for Murder, his cameo falls somewhere in between. He appears in a class reunion photo in the Wendice apartment, seated at a banquet table among other men.

11. IT’S BEEN REMADE FOUR TIMES.

Michael Douglas and Gwyneth Paltrow in 'A Perfect Murder' (1998)
Warner Bros.

Dial M for Murder was a film adaptation of a stage play that had also already been adapted for television in Britain, and it proved popular enough that four more adaptations followed. In 1958, NBC broadcast a Hallmark Hall of Fame production, in which both Anthony Dawson and John Williams returned to play Swann and Chief Inspector Hubbard, respectively. A 1967 ABC television production of the play co-starred Laurence Harvey and Diane Cilento. A television movie starring Angie Dickinson and Christopher Plummer was produced in 1981, and in 1998 the play served as the inspiration for the film A Perfect Murder, starring Michael Douglas and Gwyneth Paltrow.

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