The actor has starred in a prolific number of films over the past few years - including 'Jane Eyre', 'Inglourious Basterds', 'A Dangerous Method' and 'X-Men: First Class' - so has decided not to take on any more projects until 2012 because he doesn't want people to get bored of him.
He said: "I have been working intensely and putting a lot of stuff out and that's why I'm taking some time off now - I am not going to do anything for the rest of the year.
"You know, this just happened to me, these amazing projects came my way that I felt were too good to turn down, and for the past 20 months I've been going back to back, so now it's time for me to clear the decks. Also, I don't want to saturate and bore people."
Throughout his career, Michael has teamed up with director Steve McQueen several times and says he brings out the best of his acting skills, even though it's not always easy.
He told The Sunday Times Culture magazine: "It's like you're on the ice rink skirting along the edges holding on, then a six-year-old flies past and it encourages you. Steve is like that six year old, because he lets you go for it. 'What's the worst that can happen?' And you know, you might fall a few times, but it's much more fun in the middle that skirting around the edges."