Antonio Banderas says his heart attack was a “turning point” in his life.
The 58-year-old actor was rushed to hospital back in 2017 after suffering chest pains while exercising which was later discovered to be a heart attack, and has now said his health scare changed him “psychologically”, as he became determined to prove he was still in a “perfect state” to act.
He said: “It was a turning point, psychologically. And the tendency you have as a human, after a cardiac event, is to show yourself in a perfect state. You want to do even more. You go, ‘I can do a good job!’ And so I chose to do more interesting movies.”
Recently, Antonio has taken on the role of Salvador Mallo in Pain and Glory, which sees him star as the director with physical difficulties and a lifetime of regret.
And the Spanish actor says the movie can resonate with people from all walks of life, because everybody “travels through life with a suitcase filled with miseries and greatness”.
He added: “Pain and glory? We all travel through life with a suitcase filled with miseries and greatness. When you look back at your life, everybody has to reconcile with certain people, sometimes to ask for forgiveness - things you have said and done, things you didn’t do or say.”
Antonio admits his own life hasn’t been “perfect” but says he’s now devoted to telling the “truth” and being honest about his life.
Speaking to The Sunday Times’ Culture magazine, he said: “I’m 60 next year and have realised there is a moment in your life when there is only space for truth. My life has never been perfect. I travel through with my own s**t. But the challenge for anyone famous is just to recoup the normality of everyday life. If you’ve made yourself a castle, your contact with reality vanishes.
“It’s dangerous. Because you start thinking you are special, but you’re not. You connect to people artistically, but that doesn’t make you special. You can go cuckoo.”