Empire – 1997

THE HEART THROB – by Garth Pierce

Garth Pierce: What were you doing the day Empire first went on sale?
Brad Pitt: Struggling… really struggling. I can remember that in the summer
of 1989 I had just $800 in my bank account and I spent $600 of it traveling
to see my then girlfriend on a film location. I must have been crazy.

GP: What is the worst film you have been in?
BP: I have just got myself into a load of trouble over remarks I made about
The Devil’s Own. I am not going to make the same mistake again. Sorry.

GP: What was your last birthday like?
BP: It was a week before Christmas [December 18] and I was in Argentina filming
Seven Years in Tibet. My girl, Gwynnie, came to visit and threw a surprise party.
It was great. She is the most wonderful thing in my life. I believe in marriage
and want to kiss the bride, wear the ring, wear my suit… And wake up in
the morning and go: ‘Good morning, wife. Can I get you tea or coffee?’
[Since this interview was conducted, Brad Pitt and Gwyneth Paltrow have split

GP: What has been the best thing in cinema in the last seven years?
BP: That is a pretty weighty question, isn’t it? I was reading an article
in Time or Newsweek in which they were saying that we do not have the great
films we had in the 70s. That is untrue, because I have seen Fargo, Trainspotting
and Emma in the last year and they’re as good as anything you’ll
see. My favourite film tends to be the last great one I’ve watched. I
saw Swingblade last night—so that’s got my vote at this particular

GP: What do you think of Oliver Stone: genius or goat?
BP: Don’t get me into trouble. He’s an accomplished filmmaker.

GP: Which role do you’d wish you’d played?
BP: None of them. If I don’t get something, I put it out of my mind. The
reason is that whatever role you want, the actor who gets it gives a different
interpretation, so it spoils the dream.

GP: When was the last time you got medieval on someone?
BP: I’m sorry, I don’t understand the question.

GP: Who was your first crush on?
BP: A girl at high school. I don’t think she ever realized it—and,
no, I’m not going to give her name.

GP: Which character or star would you most like to have sex with?
BP: It’s obvious, isn’t it? My girl.

GP: What’s the most outrageous thing you’ve read about yourself.
BP: That I stink.

GP: Do you read or care about reviews?
BP: Some I read and some I don’t. I care to some extent, but most reviews
I don’t agree with. They’re written by people who weren’t

GP: Does any piece of criticism stick in your mind?
BP: I try and forget it all.

GP: What was the first film you saw?
BP: I was very small, it was something with a good ape and a bad ape. I can’t
remember the title.

GP: Can you quote a line of poetry?
BP: I am not into that. I hate favourite songs and movie questions; there’s
so much I like and I don’t have a clear idea of what’s best. David
Thewlis, who is with me on Seven Years in Tibet—and one of the greatest
actors I have ever worked with, by the way—writes beautiful poetry. I
draw. I like the outline that a pen makes on a blank piece of paper.

GP: Which film means the most to you?
BP: A River Runs Through It meant a lot at the time. So did Thelma & Louise.
Seven was the most fun of any set. Fincher, the director, was so damned funny
and Morgan Freeman was king, a real gentleman. But I suppose the real answer
is: the next one.

GP: Who do you think is the most powerful person in the film industry?
Who gives a damn?