The American actor is best known for his roles in movies like Goodfellas, Killing Them Softly and Blow. He's seen many changes in the film industry over the years and is especially disappointed that, in his view, the quality of features and the candidates for the Oscars aren't what they used to be.

"Cinema is becoming more and more about tentpole movies," he bemoaned to Digital Spy. "There's a few good movies, but they've become less and less.

"And now for some crazy reason, they nominate 10 pictures (for Best Picture) at the Academy Awards. I'm like, really, how many were really Oscar-worthy? Maybe three, if that?

"They just aren't making enough of what they used to do. They seem like they're more anxious to spend $250 million on one tentpole movie than make 20 movies for $10 million."

This is one of the main reasons why 61-year-old Ray has moved onto the small screen more permanently, currently appearing opposite Jennifer Lopez in series Shades of Blue. He plays police officer Lt. Wozniak, while the Jenny from the Block beauty takes on the lead part of New York detective and single mother Harlee Santos.

"I just saw the lay of the land - a lot of the better writing was going towards television. The landscape had changed," Ray explained.

"When I started, if you were on a television show, your career was over. Now it's just the opposite - you have the better writers and directors going towards television. You even have Scorsese on his second show. It just seems to be the way of the world right now - so I have to play the game to beat them at the game!"