Javier Ángel Encinas Bardem (born 1 March 1969) is a Spanish actor.
You’ve got a free day to yourself. What do you do?
Make myself busy, I guess [laughs]. I can’t help it. It’s like, freedom is very [laughs]… you have to be very wise to deal with total freedom. We usually tend to lock ourselves in many other things, most of them unnecessarily. So I guess what I tend to do is to keep myself busy and what I have to remind myself is to know that it’s fine to not do anything for one day. Actually, it is good.
But the sense of wasting time and the sense of not doing something that in your mind, in your own values, is productive, it’s something that you have to deal with and learn how to let go. It’s not easy either. I mean, when you’re 12 or 13, yes, but when you’re 47… Yet it’s as important as to eat or to sleep or to drink.
Really, to do nothing is very hard. Somebody told me, “Just try to not read, eat, drink, watch any TV, write; just stare through the window”. And it’s impossible. I end up doing something with my hands, or I end up putting my attention into something else. If you are really freeing your mind, that’s when the good ideas are going to come and visit you. But it’s not an easy state to reach.
How often do you exercise and if so, why do you do it?
I started playing rugby when I was 9 years old and that was one of the best gifts life – and my brother, who was the one who brought me to rugby – has ever given to me because that put me in the mind of doing sports. So at this moment I’m doing a lot of exercise. And I’m doing a little bit of boxing, some gym – the gym is boring but you have to do it. Rugby I gave up, I’m too old for that, I like to watch it. But I do exercise almost every day, a little bit. I like it. Just to try to put out tension and relax. It’s a great release.
How long does it take you to get ready in the morning?
The truth? The plain truth? For like, one hour, one hour 30 minutes. No, no, I would say I go, I brush my teeth, I throw some water on my face – and that’s something I learned when I was a little kid going to school – I always put cold water to my face and I guess that takes me around 5 minutes. And then of course I get dressed. I’m not a good friend of a mirror, the mirror is just a need, to go to it at certain moments to see what’s going on but I’m not too friendly of mirrors.
Bardem grew up among those associated with films due to his family’s association with the Spanish film industry for many generations and in spite of having an interest in acting, he wanted to become a painter.
Bardem studied at the Escuela de Artes y Oficios in order to get trained as a painter. In fact, he did start off as a painter but did not find the sort of success that he aspired for and when he struggled with his finances he took up stray acting jobs.