To Budd Schulberg
I’m not insane about Brando for this. In fact, in my opinion he is quite wrong. But he’s a fine actor and if he’s really excited about it and will work like a beginner trying to get a start, he can be fine. He’s got to be hungry and anxious. The power to be that disappears with your picture on an ad. If we don’t get Brando, I’m for Paul Newman. This boy will definitely be a film star. I have absolutely no doubt. He’s just as good looking as Brando, and his masculinity, which is strong, is also more actual. He’s not as good an actor as Brando yet, and probably will never be. But he’s a darn good actor with plenty of power, plenty of insides, plenty of sex.
Excerpted from THE SELECTED LETTERS OF ELIA KAZAN, edited by Albert J. Devlin with Marlene J. Devlin. Copyright © 2014 by FrancesKazan. Published by Arrangement with Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of the Knopf Doubled Ay publishing group, a division of Random House LLC.