Q: Why do you think this period in history is so popular in film?
A: I can tell you that I've always loved those movies. I grew up on them - Spartacus, Ben Hur. Lots of costume movies. More recently, Gladiator. I like the chance to wear a toga - where else can you do that, except in college?
Q: What is the key to making the movie believable?
A: Well, I have to be careful not to sound like I'm from New York, which I am, but when you put the costume on and the wig, things take care of themselves.
Q: What made you want to be a part of this film?
A: I've been in show business for a half a century and nobody's ever asked me to do a movie about ancient Rome. I thought, well, I'd better do it now; I might not have a chance again. Also, this script is very historically accurate and there are things in it about Caesar that I'd never heard before. He was apparently pretty rough in battle.
Q: Who is Cato?
A: My character, Cato, is the voice of the people. The Senate represented the people. Cato believed that in order to represent the people you must preserve their traditions.