I was watching the news the other day and saw a video with Dustin Hoffman and it struck a chord with me. It's only 3 mins and worth taking a look - - but Hoffman explains his approach to playing a female character in the movie "Tootsie" and how he had an epiphany during the film:
The first time Hoffman saw himself in the mirror in full makeup as his character Dorothy Michaels, he says, he was surprised.
"I was shocked that I wasn't more attractive," he admits. "I said, 'Now you have me looking like a woman, now make me beautiful.' I thought I should be beautiful if I was going to be a woman. I would want to be as beautiful as possible."
When the makeup team assured him that there was nothing else they could do to make him more "beautiful," Hoffman says he had an "epiphany" that shook him.
"It was at that moment I had an epiphany, and I went home and started crying," he says in the AFI interview, fighting back tears as he recounts his realization. "Talking to my wife, I said, 'I have to make this picture,' and she said, 'Why?' And I said, 'Because I think I am an interesting woman when I look at myself on screen. And I know that if I met myself at a party, I would never talk to that character because she doesn't fulfill physically the demands that we're brought up to think women have to have in order to ask them out.'"
"She says, 'What are you saying?'" he continues. "And I said, 'There's too many interesting woman I have … not had the experience to know in this life because I have been brainwashed.'" - US Magazine