James Cagney Quotes

“You dirty, double-crossing rat.” – James Cagney

“Perhaps people, and kids especially, are spoiled today, because all the kids today have cars, it seems. When I was young you were lucky to have a bike.” – James Cagney

“Absorption in things other than self is the secret of a happy life.” – James Cagney

Absorption in things other

“My childhood was surrounded by trouble, illness, and my dad’s alcoholism, but as I said, we just didn’t have the time to be impressed by all those misfortunes. I have an idea that the Irish possess a built-in don’t-give-a-damn that helps them through all the stress.” – James Cagney

“Find your mark, look the other fellow in the eye, and tell the truth.” – James Cagney

“Learn your lines… plant your feet… look the other actor in the eye… say the words… mean them.” – James Cagney

Learn your lines… plant your

“There’s not much to say about acting but this. Never settle back on your heels. Never relax. If you relax, the audience relaxes. And always mean everything you say.” – James Cagney

“Outside of my family, the prime concern of my life has been nature and its order, and how we have been savagely altering that order.” – James Cagney

“Once a song and dance man, always a song and dance man. Those few words tell as much about me professionally as there is to tell.” – James Cagney

Once a song and dance man,

“I never had the slightest difficulty with a fellow actor. Not until One, Two, Three. In that picture, Horst Buchholz tried all sorts of scene-stealing didoes. I came close to knocking him on his ass.” – James Cagney

“You don’t psych yourself up for these things, you do them… I’m acting for the audience, not for myself, and I do it as directly as I can.” – James Cagney

“You know, the period of World War I and the Roaring Twenties were really just about the same as today. You worked, and you made a living if you could, and you tired to make the best of things. For an actor or a dancer, it was no different then than today. It was a struggle.” – James Cagney

You know, the period of

“I got a part as a chorus girl in a show called Every Sailor and I had fun doing it. Mother didn’t really approve of it, through.” – James Cagney

“The Postman Always RingsTwice.” – James Cagney

The Postman Always

“Though I soon became typecast in Hollywood as a gangster and hoodlum, I was originally a dancer, an Irish hoofer, trained in vaudeville tap dance. I always leapt at the opportunity to dance in films later on.” – James Cagney

“I never said, ‘MMMmmm, you dirty rat!” – James Cagney

“My father was totally Irish, and so I went to Ireland once. I found it to be very much like New York, for it was a beautiful country, and both the women and men were good-looking.” – James Cagney

My father was totally Irish,

“I`m sick of carrying guns and beating up women.” – James Cagney