Nicole Sperling
January 02, 2009 AT 05:00 AM EST

Hollywood’s no country for old men. But industry sources suggest these strategies for stars of a certain age

1. Work with the most talented people you can find. Hoffman teamed up with Johnny Depp in Finding Neverland and director David O. Russell in I Heart Huckabees.

2. Take small roles where you can do something unexpected. Gene Hackman’s turn in The Royal Tenenbaums showcased a quirky new dimension to his acting.

3. Create your own opportunities. No one has reinvented himself with more class (or awards) than Clint Eastwood has in movies like Million Dollar Baby.

4. Don’t abuse the payday. You’ve got to love Al Pacino and respect his astonishing career — except when he does something like 88 Minutes.

5. Find roles that connect with young moviegoers. Jack Nicholson, ever the old pro, was savvy enough to pair up with Adam Sandler in Anger Management.

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