Robert De Niro thinks overnight success is no good for actors

Robert De Niro thinks actors become famous way too quickly.

The Irish (and Italian, and German) American veteran actor believes his struggle to find success in his early career has kept him grounded and feels modern stars need time to find their feet.

De Niro makes these observations in a time when actors like Robert Pattinson rocket to overnight stardom.

"I think it's important to have had at least a few years of obscurity, where people treat you like everybody else,” the 66-year-old told Parade magazine. “Then it goes crazy, and all of a sudden people behave differently toward you, they're agreeing with you all the time, they're not telling you no.

"I had some regular life behind me. It anchored me, going into the future."

The iconic actor doesn't mind being a role model for other aspiring Hollywood stars because he believes he has enough life experience to give good advice.

"I don't mind giving advice. I've had more experience, just by virtue of being alive longer, so I don't mind doing that - if people ask. I don't want to be preachy,” he said.

But De Niro admitted that he was so convinced he would be a star that he never thought about a back-up career.

"I didn't have a Plan B. I never quite got to the point of needing one,” he said.

“I did one thing, then the next. I was able to sustain myself."