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At the age of fourteen, Al Pacino saw his first professional theater production -- and had a revelation:

"I had never seen grown-ups act on stage... This troupe was doing 'The Seagull' by Chekhov. The play started and then it was over. That's how fast it went for me. It was magical. I remember thinking, Who was the person who wrote this? I went out and got a book of Chekhov's stories. Then I went into the High School of Performing Arts."

Some time later, Pacino had another revelation.

"One day I go into the Howard Johnson's near the school for something to eat and the star of that show is pushing coffee behind the counter."

["I was in awe of this guy," Pacino recalled. "I had to tell him. I remember that exchange. He was so grateful in a way, kind and understanding."]

[Pacino's earliest brush with fame? "In elementary school, I was in a show where there was a big pot -- the melting pot -- and I was the representative from Italy, stirring. I can remember the kids in school asking for my autograph, and I would sign it 'Sonny Scott.'"]

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