With Begin Again opening in cinemas on Friday, star Mark Ruffalo has told RTÉ TEN that the film's story of a young artist struggling to make their way in the world was all too familiar to him.
Begin Again follows a singer (Keira Knightley) and a burnt-out record executive (Ruffalo) who rediscover their love of life by working together.
When asked by TEN if the story reminded him of his own early years as an aspiring actor, Ruffalo replied: "It's something that is deep inside me, and was a big struggle. I know all about that and that desperation and nothing lining up, just not happening - I'm too familiar with that."
Ruffalo told TEN that in his years working as a bartender, he met many people who were trying to make it in the entertainment industry.
"Musicians and actors - and the bar that I worked at was a particular musician place," he recalled.
"Half the people I worked with were musicians that were trying to make it in LA. I also worked at a guitar shop stringing guitars and tuning guitars and fixing guitars. And so all those guys I worked with were all musicians. I lived off Sunset Boulevard; I was deeply in that world."
Asked if, having spent time in that world, he believed the adage that 'talent is luck', Ruffalo replied: "I think what happens is you've got to hit it - you get maybe one tossed to you and you have to be ready.
"The only way to be ready is just to work on your craft and yourself so when that moment comes your talent actually shines through. So sometimes it's luck, sometimes it's attitude."
"A lot of the people who are the most talented people that I've ever known had their own self-limiting attitude: it was them, not the world, that stopped them. That's really, really sad to see, because it's just really an illusion that they created for themselves," he said.