Ken Howard, the National President of SAG-AFTRA who passed away earlier this week, said that, or versions of that many times. I was raised believing that and have always been an ensemble player, whether the lead for an extra hidden far in the background.
Ken was an actor who believed in and worked for actors.
One example comes from George Clooney...
"There’s a story about how a young actor met Ken on the Fox lot in 1983 and told him what a fan he was of The White Shadow. Ken asked that actor what he did and the young man said, 'Well, someday I hope to be lucky enough to work with you.' Then he told Ken he had an audition all the way across town at Paramount but he wasn't going to make it because all he had was a bike. So Ken put his bike in the trunk of his car and dropped him off at Paramount. Then Ken just waved goodbye and said good luck, 'I hope we do get that chance to work together.' I didn’t get that audition, But I did get the chance to work with him years later. It was an honor. Today his obituary read that he was six foot six, but he was so much taller than that."
Ken, we will miss you.
And may we all live up to the theater and film standards you lived by.