Kirk Douglas’ Movies & Quotes

kirk douglas

Getty Film actor Kirk Douglas and the Indian actress Mehtab rest at the Lido beach.

Kirk Douglas, the actor, died today, February 5, 2020 at the age of 103.

His son Michael Douglas posted on Instagram, “To the world he was a legend, an actor from the golden age of movies who lived well into his golden years, a humanitarian whose commitment to justice and the causes he believed in set a standard for all of us to aspire to.”

Here are quotes from the characters he played in some of his most well known movies and quotes he said during his life:


Spartacus (1960)

“When a free man dies, he loses the pleasure of life. A slave loses his pain. Death is the only freedom a slave knows. That’s why he’s not afraid of it. That’s why we’ll win.” (As Spartacus.)


For Love or Money (1963)

“Nothing like nice, crisp money to ‘dicker’ with.” (As Deke Gentry.)


Seven Days In May (1964)

“On the contrary, Senator, they’re standard awards for cocktail courage and dinner-table heroism. I thought you’d invented them.” (As Colonel Martin “Jigs” Casey.)


The Arrangement (1969)

“I want you to sell that house. And sell that place in the desert. Sell the cars, the paintings, that Bulgarian statue in the garden. Sell the books, the records, deep freezer, everything! Look, I’m the head of the house, that’s an order: sell it!” (As Eddie Anderson.)


A Gunfight (1971)

“A job? Suckerin’ fools to buy drinks? ‘Cept I wear my pants on the outside I’m no different from Jenny you laid with last night.” (As Will Tannery.)


Kirk Douglas’ Quotes

Douglas said many memorable things in his role as himself, a father, a husband and a friend.

His son, Michael Douglas posted on Instagram, “…to me and my brothers Joel and Peter he was simply Dad, to Catherine, a wonderful father-in-law, to his grandchildren and great grandchild their loving grandfather, and to his wife Anne, a wonderful husband.” Here are some of his best quotes about people, life, love and success:


1. Kirk Douglas on Burt Lancaster:

“I’ve finally gotten away from Burt Lancaster. My luck has changed for the better. I’ve got nice-looking girls in my films now.”


2. Kirk Douglas on Being A Nice Guy:

“Virtue is not photogenic. What is it to be a nice guy? To be nothing, that’s what. A big fat zero with a smile for everybody.”


3. Kirk Douglas on Success:

“I’ve made a career of playing sons of bitches.”

“In order to achieve anything you must be brave enough to fail.”

“I came from abject poverty. There was nowhere to go but up.”

“Making movies is a form of narcissism.”

“People are always talking about the old days. They say that the old movies were better, that the old actors were so great. But I don’t think so. All I can say about the old days is that they have passed.”


4. Kirk Douglas on Money:

“I have always told my sons that they didn’t have my advantages of being born into abject poverty.”


5. Kirk Douglass on Life:

“Life is like a B-picture script! It is that corny. If I had my life story offered to me to film, I’d turn it down.”


6. Kirk Douglas on Marriage:

“If you want to know about a man you can find out an awful lot by looking at who he married.”


7. Kirk Douglas on Women:

“If the good guy gets the girl, it’s rated PG; If the bad guy gets the girl, it’s rated R; and if everybody gets the girl, it’s rated X.”


8. Kirk Douglas on Immortality:

“I want my sons to surpass me, because that’s a form of immortality.”

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