Antonio Banderas' post-heart attack vow

Antonio Banderas didn't want to give up work after he suffered a heart attack because he felt as though he wanted to "eat [himself] alive".

The 57-year-old actor was rushed to hospital last year after suffering chest pains while exercising, and while he turned out to be suffering from a heart attack, the 'Mask of Zorro' star couldn't bear to stop acting afterwards because he wanted to "eat [himself] alive".

He said: "I take the drugs [the doctors] recommended. I thought I was going to stop working a little bit more, but I decided not to because I missed my life and that's it.

"Sometimes I complain that I need to stop or need some rest, but after two days I want to eat myself alive.

"This is what I do, this is my life. I don't want to live my life like I'm already dead. I'm just going to live it, and if I die, I die."

Despite carrying on with work, Antonio admits he was "scared" when he suffered chest pains and has stopped smoking since.

He said: "It was scary, to tell you the truth. It was something that I knew before, but then you see it very clearly in front of you - and that's that the existence of death is very real.

"I stopped smoking. I do a lot of sport."

As well as continuing to act in movies, Antonio - who split from wife Melanie Griffith in 2015 after 19 years together - is determined to learn new skills as he did when he released a fashion collection in 2016.

Speaking to the Guardian newspaper, he added: "I have been a student my whole life, I don't stop studying and I'm going to continue. I don't consider myself a master of anything.

"I was never worried about a career. I never thought I had to be very careful about my next choice because I had to preserve the type of actor that people perceive me to be - because then you are not free any more."

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