Sir Michael Caine feared his career had entered a downward spiral in the 90s.
The Hollywood legend remains among the most recognisable faces in the movie business, but has admitted to feeling anxious after being considered too old to play the lead in a romantic film.
He recalled: "I was 62, 63 and one day I got a script and I read it and I sent it back to the producer with a letter saying the part was too small.
"He sent me a letter back saying, 'I didn't want you to read the lover, I wanted you to read the father.' And I went, 'Oops.' That was a turning point for me. I suddenly realised getting the girl was all over."
Sir Michael, 82, subsequently backed away from making films - but was ultimately convinced to return by Jack Nicholson.
He told ShortList magazine: "I gave up and I went to live in Miami. I was having loads of fun, and then Jack got a script and said, 'Why don't you do this movie ['Blood and Wine'] with me?'
"So I started off again. Then I did 'Little Voice' and a whole series of movies I really enjoyed. I won Academy Awards, Baftas and Golden Globes all over the place. 'Little Voice' got me going again."