Marlon Brando on Success & Failure (1957)

“Too much success can ruin you as surely as too much failure. Of course, you can’t always be a failure. Not and survive. Van Gogh! There’s an example of what can happen when a person never receives any recognition. You stop relating; it puts you outside. But I guess success does that, too. You know, it took me a long time before I was aware that that’s what I was—a big success. I was so absorbed in myself, my own problems, I never looked around, took account. I used to walk in New York, miles and miles, walk in the streets late at night, and never see anything. I was never sure about acting, whether that was what I really wanted to do; I’m still not. Then, when I was in Streetcar, and it had been running a couple of months, one night—dimly, dimly—I began to hear this roar. It was like I’d been asleep, and I woke up here sitting on a pile of candy.”

(Excerpted from Truman Capote’s New Yorker profile “The Duke in His Domain”)

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