Sir Anthony Hopkins not a true Welshman, according to Richard Burton

Burton inspired a young Hopkins to become a Hollywood star - despite the insults

Sir Anthony Hopkins has revealed Richard Burton told him he was not a ‘true Welshman’ because he could not speak Welsh and didn’t pay attention to rugby.

The pair grew up in Port Talbot near Swansea, but unlike Hopkins, Burton grew up in a Welsh-speaking family.

Aged 17, the double Oscar-winning actor went to get an autograph from Burton, by then a star, who was visiting the town.

Burton announced that he was off to Cardiff to watch Wales play in the Five Nations Championship.

And when Hopkins admitted he did not know they were playing France, he was told he was ‘really not a true Welshman’.

Despite his nationality being questioned, the 84 year old was still inspired to become an actor after seeing Burton drive off to Cardiff in his grey Jaguar.

Speaking to Candis magazine, the Silence of the Lambs star said: “My father was the local backer and Richard’s sister, Cecily, used to come into my parents’ shop.

Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor

“And in the 1950s, after Richard became famous, he was home staying with his sister, and I went to his house to get his autograph.

“I remember knocking on the door and this lady came and I said ‘Hello, can I have Richard Burton’s autograph?’ ‘Oh, you’re Dick Hopkins son aren’t you?’

“So I went down the passageway and heard this ‘bzz’ and there was Richard Burton, shaving with an electric razor, and he had a T-shirt on and blazing blue eyes.

“He said to me ‘do you speak Welsh?’, I said ‘no’. He said ‘then you’re not a true Welshman’.

“He looked through me with those eyes and his wife, Sybil, who was eating breakfast, said ‘oh, come on Richard, just sign the autograph’.

“Then he said ‘we’re going to the rugby match in Cardiff’, ‘oh yes?’ I said, ‘what match is that?’

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