The Spanish actor told ABC News that his secret for playing the villain in movies, despite being a self-proclaimed "nice boy" in real life is "having the good material."
"Where you can have layers to play ... that’s ... the fun part,” Bardem said. "At the end of the day what you're trying to do is to create a human being behind a monster, and that's the most important thing."
He adds that behind the frightening facade of his character "is revenge, it's rage, and also it's pain."
In order to be transformed into a "monster" for the screen, Bardem reveals he spent "three hours, every day," in the makeup chair.
“You go through every state of mind, you start to be very patient at the beginning, and then you lose it," Bardem joked of his time spent getting makeup applied to him. "At the end of the day you’re like, take me out of here."
Bardem said Cruz told him, "You’re going to forget that you’re working actually.”
The actor adds that he brought his two children to visit the set of the movie, but only while they were filming the "part in the movie where I'm alive."
"That’s the part that I wanted them to see rather than when I was with the makeup on,” Bardem added. "That's too scary."
"Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales" hits theaters nationwide tomorrow.