The single best thing about technology is how it lets the most respected elder statesmen of the stage act like silly middle-schoolers. Remember when Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart burned the internet down with their daily displays of friendship? Simpler times.
The latest example comes to us from Anthony Hopkins, the acting legend and Oscar winner best known for playing a guy who likes to eat people. The 82-year-old Commander of the Order of the British Empire (he was knighted a few years before he even made Silence of the Lambs—think about that!) has signed up for TikTok, the incredibly popular video app that’s only probably a Chinese spy tool, and done what every TikTok’er seems to do: film himself doing a silly little dance. Hopkins joined TikTok yesterday, and his first (and only) video so far already has like a quarter of a million views. Honestly I have no idea how good a number that is for a TikTok video that’s been up for 18 hours—maybe if Hopkins focused on his butt more in his video he’d have like 5 times that already. I don’t know. I do know that watching Anthony Hopkins take on the Toosie Slide Challenge—which, yes, means dancing to Drake’s song “Toosie Slide”—is a wonderfully serene moment of joy during an increasingly fractious and anxious time.
Just as great as his dancing, though, is who Hopkins calls out to continue on the challenge. Perhaps the greatest actor of his generation targets two other legends who might be bigger (both in terms of popularity and physical stature) but who, without question, aren’t quite on his level as a thespian. The cocksure Hopkins calls out the two greatest action stars of the ‘80s, the decade that essentially created the concept of the action star, in Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger. If you’ve ever wanted to see Dr. Hannibal Lecter dissing Rocky and the Terminator while sliding around in front of an abstract painting, now’s your chance.
It’s easy to mock and dismiss TikTok as something that “the kids” are into, instead of the no less respectable ways we killed our time in the past, like watching MTV all afternoon or playing videogames. Fortunately one of the most acclaimed actors of all time is here to remind us that there’s no age limit to goofing around on the internet, and that nobody’s above having fun, no matter how dignified or respected they are.
Check out Hopkins’ TikTok here, and if you use that app regularly, follow his channel while you’re at it.