Michael Caine: A-lister saved me

Sir Michael Caine

Sir Michael Caine's life was saved by Tony Curtis.

The actors were two of the most in-demand stars during the '50s and '60s, with Tony going on to work up until two years before his death in 2010.

During a showbiz party early on in Michael's career a friendly chat with Tony changed the course of the British actor's future.

"You know who saved my life? Tony Curtis. I was at a party. This was when Tony Curtis was very famous. I knew who he was but had never met him. I was speaking to someone by a fireplace and took the end of the cigarette that was in my mouth, lit another cigarette with it, and went on talking and smoking," Michael explained to esquire.com.

"Then I felt a hand come around behind me and go into my pocket. Tony Curtis took the cigarettes out and threw them in the fire. He said, 'You don't know me, but I've been watching you. That is, what, the fifth cigarette you've lit in less than an hour?' He said, 'You're gonna die. I've just saved your life for you.' He was right. You can't smoke cigarettes like that and live. And I stopped."

Michael revealed the life lessons he's learned over his 81 years for the publication, which include not fretting over restaurant bills and that being poor taught him not to worry about money.

The double Oscar-winning actor also advises buying a house in an area where nothing else can be built.

"Yes, your fears do diminish with age - 'cause your memory goes and you forget what you're afraid of!" he also outlined.

"I have no sense of competition with other actors. I love to see great performances. The only sense of competition I have is with myself. This time, you've got to do something absolutely different from what you've ever done before. On occasions, I've succeeded. That's how I've kept my career going."

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