My great problem is that I’ve always felt… that it was all a very exposable myth that I was somebody. I’ve felt that this was an absurd dishonesty and that if I were close to people, it would be instantly evident & they would say, ‘Well, gee, he’s nothing at all. What do we want to see him for?’ If I can talk to someone for just five minutes, five vital minutes, I feel I can carry on the myth of being a full person, but any longer and I would be shown up as an empty, worthless nothing… all colorless and shrinking, invisible.
Ironically, I spent a couple of years playing parts in which I was supposed to be a decisive person, but all the while I was in a torment over this feeling of being a total cipher. It just about paralyzed me.
– Anthony Perkins, in Saturday Evening Post interview (1960). Photographed by Sam Levin (1963).