Page last updated at 12:56 GMT, Friday, 12 February 2010

Sir Anthony Hopkins acts 'like a submarine'

Sir Anthony Hopkins
Sir Anthony Hopkins won an Oscar for his role in Silence of the Lambs

Actor Sir Anthony Hopkins claims the secret to his success when playing characters in horror and thriller films is to act "like a submarine".

"I think part of it is being still... just don't do much and just let it evolve," he told the Los Angeles Times.

The 72-year-old won an Oscar for his role as the menacing Hannibal Lecter in Silence of the Lambs in 1991.

The actor currently stars in the remake of the 1941 thriller The Wolfman, alongside Benicio Del Toro.

"It's resisting the urge to push the envelope," Sir Anthony added, who believes his reserved approach to villainy improves his performances.

"It's very difficult for an actor to avoid, you want to show a bit. But I think the less one shows the better."

Hannibal Lecter was named the greatest villain in screen history by the American Film Institute, beating the likes of Darth Vader and the Wicked Witch of the West from The Wizard of Oz.

Sir Anthony will next be seen as Odin in Thor, Kenneth Branagh's film version of the Marvel comic book.

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