Despite earning millions, Jackie Gleason didn't care about money
Have you ever heard someone say, "I don't care about money"? Jackie Gleason said this before, and he meant it.
The Honeymooners star was worth millions, but being rich is not what gave him the drive to follow his dreams. Of course, it gave him the finer things and an upscale lifestyle, but Gleason cared about success.
In an interview with The Baltimore Sun, the actor talked about the connection between success, money and his life.
"I don't care about money," Gleason said. "Success is like a blue serge suit. You pick up the lint of your critics' behavior. People seem to think I should be ashamed of making $11,000,000. I'm not. I didn't rob a bank. This is America."
The massive amount he was referring to in the quote was made during a contract with CBS. The agreement was for two years and included projects like The Honeymooners. When the journalist, Sheilah Graham, asked, "Are you happy?" the actor replied, "It doesn't make me sad. But there are some burrs in success."
He added, "It isn't a matter of how success handles you. And the secret of long life in show business is to know how to lay an egg gracefully. And never press — for a laugh or to get money. The only way to make money is to cheat and not to cheat."
In the article, the journalist admitted that she was confused by Gleason's statement, so she continued the interview by asking him about his then-upcoming projects.
"I'll be filming 78 shows — 'The Honeymooners.' And I'll film them in New York, not Hollywood," he said. Since he was making more money, it meant there was a lot of work to be done. Yet, the $11,000,000 deal was a big increase from the $250 a week film contract he got at the beginning of his career.
It's safe to say that Gleason was grateful to be able to do what he loved, and the millions were just a bonus.
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