Everyone has seen Jeff Goldblum in a movie. The Oscar-and Emmy-nominated actor has done it all: alien, dinosaur, and superhero blockbusters; urban comedies (both light- and dark-hearted); dramas; thrillers—the works.
He’s not designated as a comedian first and foremost, but Goldblum is a connoisseur of absurdity and often brings a perverse, languid humor to his roles. His funniness was apparent from the earliest days of his film career: in Woody Allen’s Annie Hall (1977), for instance, Goldblum plays a vapid Los Angeles actor at a party, informing someone—presumably his agent or manager—on the phone, “I forgot my mantra.”The cameo lasted all of two seconds, but the line has become one of the most oft quoted from the classic film.
Now 65, Goldblum remains relentlessly busy. In Thor: Ragnarok, out this month, he plays the immortal, game-obsessed Grandmaster; he’s also reprising his role as Dr. Ian Malcolm in next year’s Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. Factor in his regular jazz gig in L.A. and two kids under the age of three, and Goldblum would seem to be leading a sleepless existence. But he says he’s sleeping just fine these days, thank you very much. In this Vanity Fair interview, he talks about vice-free living, an unlikely early job (it involved jails), and how he repaid Woody Allen for that early-fame favor.