Kurt Russell says actors are 'court jesters' and should avoid politics

Tom Beasley
·Contributor
·2-min read
Kurt Russell on 'The Today Show' on Monday, November 12, 2018. (Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images)
Kurt Russell on 'The Today Show' on Monday, November 12, 2018. (Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images)

Kurt Russell says actors should stay out of the political arena or risk hurting their ability to operate as “court jesters” and disappear into characters.

The 69-year-old star told the New York Times that outspoken views off-camera are often incompatible with the craft of acting.

Read more: John Cusack defends talking politics

He said: “I’ve always been someone who felt we are court jesters. That’s what we do.

“As far as I’m concerned, you should step away from saying anything so that you can still be seen by the audience in any character.”

Watch: Trailer for The Christmas Chronicles 2

Russell continued by stating that actors “lose their status as a court jester” when they choose to speak out on serious matters.

“A court jester is the only one who can walk into the castle and put the king down as long as he doesn’t hit too close to home,” he said.

“I think that’s been a big, important part of all cultures throughout history, and I’d like to see it stay in ours.”

Read more: John Boyega worried BLM speech could damage his career

Russell’s comments come in the wake of a US election campaign which saw numerous figures within the entertainment world espouse their political views in the battle between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

Hollywood icon Jane Fonda, meanwhile, recently said celebrities should use their platforms to amplify important messages.

“When someone famous takes a stand, people notice,” she said.

Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn attend a Women's Cancer Research Fund benefit gala on February 28, 2019. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn attend a Women's Cancer Research Fund benefit gala on February 28, 2019. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

Russell was interviewed alongside his wife Goldie Hawn to promote their role as Mr and Mrs Claus in Netflix festive sequel The Christmas Chronicles 2.

The sequel sees the Claus family fight back against a mysterious enemy — played by Hunt for the Wilderpeople actor Julian Dennison — who wants to see Christmas cancelled forever.

Read more: Best Christmas films of the 21st century

First reviews for the movie have been broadly positive, with Variety dubbing it a “harmless piece of hokum” and Deadline noting that Russell “fits this role like a glove”.

The Christmas Chronicles 2 is available on Netflix from 25 November.

Watch: What to watch on Netflix in November