6 JUNE 2008

He's one of the most acclaimed directors of our time and has worked with some of the industry's most important talents. Despite this, Woody Allen has revealed he struggles to get big name actors to appear in his movies.

The Oscar winner says he finds it hard to secure A-list leads for his projects because he can't offer multi-million-dollar pay packets.

"There are plenty of actors and actresses who have said - even after saying 'I'm dying to work with you, so I'll do anything' - that they're not available that day or that they can't work for the pay I'm offering," says the 73-year-old New Yorker, who's has a reputation for making movies on a £7.5 million budget.

"I couldn't afford Robert De Niro. I couldn't afford Jack Nicholson. I couldn't afford Dustin Hoffman," he continues, adding he often ends up starring in his own films because it's the cheapest option.

"For Deconstructing Harry I tried to get De Niro… I only played the part by default!" he told a US movie magazine.

Photo: © Alphapress.com
The Oscar-winning director says actors like Robert De Niro and Dustin Hoffman have turned down working on his films due to the low wages on offer - leaving him to fill their shoesPhoto: © Getty Images Click on photo to enlarge
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