The ''Fight Club'' star explains why he'll never sing on screen again

By Liane Bonin
Updated October 27, 1999 at 04:00 AM EDT
Credit: Russel Einhorn/Star Max, Inc.

Like Sunday night’s leftovers, Meat Loaf is hot again. His musical career is back on track with a new ”VH1 Storytellers” album, and his acting résumé has been beefed up with roles as a sheriff in ”Crazy in Alabama” and a large-breasted cancer survivor in ”Fight Club.” But the 241-pound rocker says that his current flavor-of-the-month status won’t be making him any choosier about the parts he takes. ”I go and do these things and I don’t read the scripts,” he admits. ”Anybody who calls me up, I say sure if I’m not doing anything. I just go have fun with it.”

While this accounts for his appearance in that painful Spice Girls movie, his cavalier attitude doesn’t apply when it comes to one particular project. Though rumors of a sequel to ”The Rocky Horror Picture Show” have been circulating for years, Meat Loaf says he’d rather not reprise his role as the motorcycle-riding Eddie. ”I don’t do soundtracks, and I really don’t want to sing in movies at all,” he says. ”It’s because there’s this thing where people say, ‘Isn’t that sweet? He’s a musician who wants to act.’ So for me it’s become like the separation of church and state with acting and music.”

Though Hollywood seems to be warming up to him as an actor, his film appearances still rub some music critics raw. ”I’ve been brutalized a lot in the rock press because I’ve always said from day one that I’m an actor. They say if you’re an actor and you don’t write all your own songs, you can’t possibly be a real [musician]. It’s stupid.”

The 52-year-old entertainer, who put his acting career on hold for seven years to support his children with a more lucrative touring gig, plans to devote more time to the big screen in the future. ”Before, I had appeared in 28 or 29 films, and my line had been that 23 of them sucked. But I’ve just kept working, and the true measure of success is whether or not I’ve been doing my work and doing it well, not whether you’ve seen me on the cover of US magazine.” Funny, we thought the true measure of success was getting the cover of Entertainment Weekly.

Crazy in Alabama

  • Movie
  • PG-13
  • 113 minutes
  • Antonio Banderas