Antonio Banderas looked to the films of Gene Kelly to help him get into character as the man behind the mask. The Legend of Zorro has attempted to recapture the spirit of the Saturday matinee movies from Hollywood's golden age, eschewing computer-generated special effects in favour of tightly choreographed fight scenes. And Banderas says the dancing feet of Kelly in such classics as 1948's The Three Musketeers continue to set the standard. 'For me, the best was Gene Kelly in The Three Musketeers,' Banderas says. 'The most beautiful, wonderful, eye-popping movie I've seen. He does things that would be impossible for someone like me, and the beauty of it is that it was done without special effects.' In a nod to Kelly, Banderas insisted on keeping the use of stuntmen to a minimum, which caused no end of consternation to the film's insurers. 'Maybe it's because I'm a Spaniard and hot-headed, but I wanted to do all my own stunts, so we had to get around the insurance company. 'It was a mess every time I had to jump off a bridge or be on a cable hanging from a crane, or jump out of a window. But if I don't do it, I watch the movie and feel like a fraud.' Banderas' insistence on taking part in as many action sequences as possible took its toll on the 45-year-old. 'It was very tiring because the movie was put together in a way that didn't allow me to have much rest,' he says. 'When I wasn't doing dialogue scenes, I was either jumping around or hanging from a crane or harness.' Banderas will next be seen with Jennifer Lopez in the crime thriller Bordertown, and returns as Puss in Boots for Shrek 3, due in 2007. But he's poured cold water on the chances of him playing Ayrton Senna in a biopic about the late Brazilian Formula One driver. 'The trouble is a lot of time has passed now,' Banderas says. 'Senna was 34 when he died and I'm 45. Pretty soon I'm going to be too old.'