Sean Penn thinks the majority of actors are ''punks''.

The 54-year-old star has hit out at people who work in the film industry, accusing the majority of performers of diluting themselves for the benefit of studios.

He said: ''I think many actors have disgraced their craft and are left to celebrity status in many cases. They're mostly the punks for what the studio wants to do.''

The Academy Award-winning star said he's seen some noticeable changes in the film industry since he started his acting career.

He told Shortlist magazine: ''I think acting today, by and large, is more associated with a fame-building game than anything to do with a gift. It's supposed to be a giving and not taking industry, and today it's more about the take.''

Sean stars as a special forces officer in his new film 'The Gunman', and he insists that it's not unrealistic for a man of his age to play an action hero.

He reflected: ''President Obama's biggest surprise when he met the Seals who went into Abbottabad to get [Osama] Bin Laden was that they were old.

''It's also a conversation about who's going to the movies these days. Maybe older people go the theatre more and will identify [with someone my age], while kids are looking at movies on their laptops.''