Jon Voight has had one of the longest, most impressive careers in Hollywood history, from the title role in 1969's Oscar winner "Midnight Cowboy" to his current role on the hit series "Ray Donovan." But Voight's success in the famously liberal entertainment arena may be even more surprising given his political leanings: he's a staunch conservative, and proud of it.
“There are a lot of conservatives in Hollywood, and they’re not very welcome," Voight told the December issue of Cigar Aficionado. "It’s a big surprise that we’ve come to this juncture where people with patriotic thoughts could not find a home in Hollywood.”
Voight says the left's current embrace of the term "progressive" smacks of something else.
“I think the word ‘progressive’ is a very devious term. It was created as a substitute for ‘communist,’" he said. "What they propose is the reverse of progress. It’s some that that does taste of communism and Karl Marx’s pernicious philosophy.”
Aside from his political views, Voight, 76, says one of the most important thing he has learned over the years is when you need help, get it.
“I think when we want to do something for the good—to help other people—we get the help we need. At one point in my career, I made that commitment, and I got help…" he said. "The hardest lesson is to acknowledge my own weakness and to forgive myself for my mistakes. And to overcome my meaner leanings. But self-forgiveness is a big deal.”
Family is also important to Voight, and after a lifetime working with some acting's greats, from Dustin Hoffman to Live Schreiber, he'd like to be directed by a certain, related Oscar-winning actress.
“I love my daughter, and I’m very impressed by her directing," He says of Angelina Jolie. "I thought 'Unbroken' was brilliant….now I’d like to be directed by her. I’m crazy about her and my grandchildren.”
The December cover story in Cigar Aficionado hits newsstands October 27