By Mike Bedigan, PA Los Angeles Correspondent
Antonio Banderas says having a heart attack was “one of the best things that happened in my life” as it gave him a better perspective.
The Oscar-nominated Spanish actor said, 62, the health scare in 2017 forced him to look at his career “from a different point of view”.
It comes following the release of Banderas’ latest film Puss In Boots: The Last Wish, in which he reprises the role of the Zorro-esque feline hero, first seen in Shrek 2 in 2004.
The latest instalment of the animated franchise sees the swashbuckling cat on the last of his nine lives, and coming to terms with his own mortality.
Asked if he could relate to the film’s themes, Banderas told the Radio Times: “I had a heart attack six years ago.
“It probably was one of the best things that happened in my life. It was like putting glasses on and seeing what was important.
“I came back to Spain and started looking at my professional life from a different point of view.
“So I do connect to it in a personal way. I think it’s a beautiful message, and I think it was done properly.”
Banderas said the movie’s storyline was “probably” based on his own experiences, adding that even 19 years later he was still attached to the character of Puss and would be willing to portray him for 19 more.
“It has been a surprising, beautiful thing that happened to me with this character,” he said.
“I never thought that I was going to be called to perform…the voice of a cat in a language that I learnt when I was 32 years old. It’s a surprise.
“Life is like that sometimes. It just comes around the corner in a way that you don’t expect.”
The full interview with Banderas can be found in this week’s Radio Times.