“It’s all about bringing people together”
Mr. Page, as an actor your work is international and frequently takes you all over the globe. Can you share some of the insights you have gained by looking at the same world from different vantage points?
I’ve learned that people might feel like they live in different worlds, but essentially we’re pretty much the same all over. At their core, people want the same thing: They want to feel safe, to love, to help each other and to make life better for themselves and for people around them.
Let’s put it another way: what have your international experiences taught you?
Wherever you travel, the core things remain exactly the same—and that’s a very valuable thing to hold on to. People might see the world from a different perspective, but the different pieces they recognize are still part of the same wider world. So, the more you communicate, the more you get the full picture.
So, it’s all about communication?
The more we share a common language, the more we share culture and experiences, the sooner we might understand that it doesn’t make sense to treat people differently while having the same experiences. The more we learn to communicate with each other, the more we will see ourselves in each other, and that brings us closer to global unity—,and through the Internet, we now communicate on a global scale.
In light of this, what is the role of the artist today?
I think it’s about bringing people together by reflecting the world as it is. There are multiple truths about what the world is like, and the artist’s role is always to decode information and reassemble it creatively into a broader picture. It’s about combining multiple perspectives. The other part is to translate truth into feelings. Because there’s more to truth than just reporting the dry facts. It’s about how you experience it.
You once summarized your life philosophy as: “My right to swing my arms ends where your face begins”. Do you think we tend to stand too close together or too far apart?
I think it’s a bit of both. There are very few places in the world now where our actions do not affect those around us, and I think our awareness of that closeness can become clouded. We often think we are self-sufficient, but at the same time our actions have a huge impact on others. We can start to lose sight of the effect we have, so we have to be conscious of staying in touch with that.
Not even knowing what you want keeps you honest, it keeps you listening.”
As an artist, you pour your emotions into your work, while also helping raise awareness of such issues.
I had a teacher at drama school who used to ask me after each and every scene: ‘What did you discover?’ So, I think it’s not always about raising awareness so much as about increasing our understanding of a problem. I don’t think there’s much intrinsic value to just being aware of a problem, but there is value in understanding how to interact with it, how to resolve it.
You once said you want your future to be largely “unexpected”. Is there anything in particular you would like to surprise you in the future?
If I knew, it wouldn’t be a surprise! Not even knowing what you want keeps you honest in certain ways, it means that it keeps you listening. It’s so valuable to force yourself to keep learning, because that’s the only way you can keep discovering the positives. Otherwise, you just stay where you are. The surprise is the value in itself.
When it comes to acting, you once said: “For an actor, everything is fuel”. What drives you?
When people feel less alone after they’ve seen something that you’ve put into the world. That’s immensely gratifying, but I would also say that that’s the thing that influences me most. It’s the one thing I chase, to continually create that feeling in people.
Again, it’s about shared experience.
Yes. When a complete stranger says ‘I got something of value from that, thank you for sharing a part of your world with me’— when you can enable community in that way, that’s the thing that drives me.