My wife says I’m much happier when I’m not a regular on a TV show.
I came to the United States to see what would happen in 2000 after working for 20 years in Australia and asked my agent to look out for the nasty roles because I’d become famous for playing the nicest man in Australia. So I wanted to play bad guys.
I was doing a late-night round as a milkman in 1978 when I heard a radio DJ announce that he was leaving. I marched straight to the radio station and told them I could do better. For some reason, they gave me a go.
When you’re tied to one show, you are very much at the mercy of the writers, so you can suddenly get a script where you have a heart attack and die.
When I moved to Los Angeles, aged 54, I printed out Winston Churchill’s phrase, ‘Never, never, never give up’, and stuck it on my fridge. I had no idea what was going to happen, but I knew I had to keep on going.
I did a production of Macbeth in the 1960s in which I had a swordfight in the final scene. But the blade fell off my sword just as I was stabbing the guy. I ended up having to hammer him to death.