Steve Buscemi wished he hadn’t read the whole script for his latest TV show, as he knew he’d be devastated if he didn’t get the part.
The actor plays corrupt politician Enoch ‘Nucky’ Thompson in US drama Boardwalk Empire. The part won him the best actor in a TV series at Sunday’s Golden Globe Awards, while the series picked up the best television drama prize.
The show has been hugely successful in America, in part because Martin Scorsese is one of its executive producers and also directed the pilot. Steve knew it would be well received as soon as he read the script, and was terrified he might not be good enough for it.
“This is one of the best parts I've ever had in my life. I mean, only in my wildest fantasies or dreams... When I first read the script, I could tell from page one that Nucky was the man. And it was sort of terrifying in a way. When I first read the script, I hadn't gotten the offer yet to play the character,” he explained. “I just thought, 'Wow, I'm almost sorry I'm reading this because, if I don't get it, I'm going to be so disappointed, so sad.’”
Steve – who is known for his portrayal of Mr. Pink in 1992’s Reservoir Dogs – was amazed when he was told he had the part. He initially thought it was a joke, and still pinches himself when he is on set as his job is so fun.
Boardwalk Empire is set in Atlantic City around the time of prohibition, and charts Nuki’s involvement with criminal gangs in the area.
The pilot cost $18 million, but bosses were so sure it would be successful they asked for 11 more episodes to be made before it even hit screens.
“It's just so exciting for me to go to work and to know that these scripts are so strong,” Steve told British newspaper The Sun. “I hope this continues for years and years.”