February 10, 2018
by admin /

Diane Sawyer:
All right. How’s this for a success story? Ten years ago, a college kid from Springfield, Missouri, who loves movies decides he’ll just drive to California and become an actor. And in fact, in seven months, Brad Pitt has his first job.

Of course, it helps that as Dustin Hoffman has said, “Next to Brad Pitt, everybody else looks like an onion.” But out here, they talk more about the young actor’s constant search for serious roles, new mountains to climb.

We first saw him last February north of Vancouver on top of the world, making the movie “Seven Years In Tibet” about a mountain climber who stumbles into spiritual clarity. The 33 – year – old actor loved the danger, the bitter cold and the prospect of getting back to the 24 – year – old woman he couldn’t wait to marry. He called her his Gwynie.

But as mountain climbers know, any moment the weather can turn. As helicopters brewed up a blizzard for a movie shot, there was turbulence ahead in life. Soon, he would learn that a magazine had paparazzi photos of him and Gwyneth Paltrow on vacation, happy and naked. He sued for recall of the magazine and won. Later in the year, there would be a scare about his father’s health which ended up OK. Add to it all, the breakup. Gossip sheets have blamed Pitt. They’ve written stories that he had a roving eye, but the gossip sheets apparently have it very wrong. Last Monday, we met up with him again outside a blues club in LA. He is tall, famously polite and hates interviews — especially those personal questions about why he broke off the engagement and about his broken heart.

Brad Pitt:
Well, that happens to everyone. But listen, that’s — are we on the love conversation now?

Diane Sawyer:
We are.

Brad Pitt:
The love line?

Diane Sawyer:
We are. Everybody has been speculating it was about somebody else for one or the two of you.

Brad Pitt:
It wasn’t one thing. It wasn’t, you know, it just — boy, I hit a brick wall here, didn’t I?

Diane Sawyer:
He says for everyone, love is about commitment and trust (on camera) Still believe in happy endings?

Brad Pitt:
Yeah, absolutely. Happy endings. Um, happy endings? No, I believe in perfect moments. And then I believe in miserable moments. And then you collect another perfect moment.

But you know, listen, oh, boy. This is the big one. It’s love, I think — I think it’s a fantastic thing. It’s fantastic. I think it’s – I don’t know, when you first meet and you have that first touch and there’s this euphoria, and it’s exciting. But that’s — that’s not it. I mean, that only lasts for so long. And love is work. Love is work. And so, you’ve got to make your choice, if that’s what’s most important to you, you know? What do you want? Do you want to be with someone, or do you want to play around? You make your choice. And you’ve got to be honest about it, if — if you find yourself going another way, that’s all. It’s very simple stuff, honesty. Yet it seems to be the toughest thing to grasp. Honesty with yourself. How’re you really feeling? Honesty with others. Otherwise, you’re better off alone. Don’t waste someone’s time.

Diane Sawyer:
You really believe in fidelity?

Brad Pitt:
Me? Yeah, I do. But it’s taken me a while to learn it, you know? I had to screw up a couple times. I had to fail to figure it out.

Diane Sawyer:
But how long ago did you learn this?

Brad Pitt:
I would say coming out of college, you know? Because your college years, you’re all over the place. At least, I was. Listen, I’ll go on to the next one just as open. And if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work. You know, I’ll keep trying. I have a lot of respect for love. And I think I’m speaking for the both of us here. You — you put yourself into a relationship and you expose yourself, and it doesn’t work. Sometimes you know, you see it’s not — it’s not going to be so healthy for the long run. You’d better get out.

Diane Sawyer:
Will you be friends again? Will you be close again?

Brad Pitt:
Oh, I don’t see how we can’t be. Um, shared a big part of our life together.

Diane Sawyer:
Some day?

Brad Pitt:
Sure, we will.

Diane Sawyer:
Do you think men and women are essentially different?

Brad Pitt:
I don’t know. I have no idea. What is that book, "Men Are From …

Diane Sawyer:
"Mars."

Brad Pitt:
… "Pluto, and Women Are From" …

Diane Sawyer:
Who knows where.(Laughter)

Brad Pitt:
I have no idea. I think women are fantastic.

Diane Sawyer:
Does it ever make you happy at all when the girls are screaming?

Brad Pitt:
Oh, sure it does. What am I, crazy?

Diane Sawyer:
Just checking.

Brad Pitt:
Come on.

Diane Sawyer:
But can you experience it? Can you say, "They all want me"?

Brad Pitt:
No. It’s not like that, though. You know, it’s — I mean, my sister had Andy Gibb up on the wall, you know? I mean, really, you know?

Diane Sawyer:
Fame is fleeting.

Brad Pitt:
Yeah, yeah. And it’s a poster.

Diane Sawyer:
Yeah.

Brad Pitt:
But every now and then, you get the individual who comes up and you know they were moved by a movie you were involved with. You know, they were honestly moved. Because that was my experience as a child. That’s why I love movies. Because someone demonstrated or articulated something that I had felt but never been able to put it that way and it made sense to me, and someone showed me some clarity and it really moved me.

Diane Sawyer:
Do you like the money? Would you ever be nervous about losing it?

Brad Pitt:
No. No. My father said to me when I was a kid, which I — it really took me off – guard. He said — because he’s very practical. And I’m not very practical. He would always say, "You either are going to be filthy rich or dirt poor. So prepare yourself."

Diane Sawyer:
Tell me about your mom and dad. Tell me about your dad.

Brad Pitt:
He’s integrity. He’s very unassuming, but he walks — he just walks it. You feel it. And where we grew up, it was all about actions and not words. We didn’t have much of a vocabulary. It was just actions.

Diane Sawyer:
And your mom?

Brad Pitt:
She’s goodness. Lovely, lovely woman. Growing up we would, you know, we would have our bedtimes and so the three of us siblings, we’d jump in our beds, separate rooms, and we’d all be yelling for her, because she’d take turns coming from room to room, right? And we’d just talk for hours sometimes. Just talk.

Diane Sawyer:
But the all – American kid came to California ready to take chances. Just look at the risky roles he keeps playing, the opposite of what he calls "the Velveeta," the glamour.

Brad Pitt:
They start throwing all this money at you, you got a responsibility. You feel more pressure if the movie’s successful because they give you this money. You want them to make their money back, you know?

Diane Sawyer:
But do you worry about what they’re going to think? Do you worry about whether you’re going to be embarrassed?

Brad Pitt:
No, no, no. No, no, no. No, I worry about the getting it right.

Diane Sawyer:
The new movie is a true story of Austrian Heinrich Harrer — Olympic athlete, epic bully. The real Harrer recently surprised the filmmakers by admitting he had joined the Nazis before the war. (on camera) On Heinrich Harrer …

Brad Pitt:
Mm – hmm.

Diane Sawyer:
… did it cause a jolt when you found out that, indeed, he was confirming that he had been a Nazi?

Brad Pitt:
Oh, yeah. It threw me a little bit. Sure because I—you know, the first thing are those images that come in the head. You think of Auschwitz, you think of the atrocities that went on, and they certainly went on. But he wasn’t a part of it.
He was a man of great hubris and an ego – maniacal, and he would have signed up with anything if it advanced himself. And this was a big honor at that time before the war, and that’s what — it was never stated this before the war broke out.

Diane Sawyer:
Would you have done something differently?

Brad Pitt:
No, that’s the story. I think it should have been enhanced in the story. That’s the story.

Diane Sawyer:
That he goes from the person who could do that?

Brad Pitt:
That’s the metamorphosis of this man, yeah.

Diane Sawyer:
It is the story of Harrer’s transformation when the tired adventurer meets the Dalai Lama, a boy lit from within.

(Clip from "Seven Years In Tibet")

Diane Sawyer:
The character he plays finds serenity, a sanctuary. Looking at this, you wonder if Brad Pitt ever will.(on camera) Among the things that have to have been — sort of rocked you this year were the "Playgirl" pictures and the whole paparazzi issue.

Brad Pitt:
Sure. There was all that to deal with as well.

Diane Sawyer:
Did you immediately think, "I’m going to sue"?

Brad Pitt:
Yeah, I think so. You know why? Because things are printed every week, and I got to tell you they are always wrong. Listen to me, they are always wrong. I don’t fight it. I don’t say anything. I just let it go. But when this thing came out, I felt like, you know, enough is enough. You know, if people — I was on a private property, and to get those photographs, you would have had to have trespassed on private property. And if people aren’t going to have common — any kind of common decency, which I see it dwindling, then I felt like it was time to make someone accountable for it. And I don’t want to infringe on the press, but correct me if I’m wrong, the code of the journalism was, I believe it was an unbiased account of newsworthy events. Is that the goal?

Diane Sawyer:
Yeah.

Brad Pitt:
Unbiased is tough, I know. But that’s the goal. But it’s that key word, newsworthy. Right? And the fact that Pitt has a penis and here’s proof, it’s not news. It’s not needed. Do you know?

Diane Sawyer:
Do you hate that people who buy those magazines and look?

Brad Pitt:
No, I don’t because it’s everyone’s impulse. It’s my impulse. It’s human nature, you know? But I, again, I say I see it slipping. I need to know if I need to shut all the shades in my house. Because right now, I think the laws have not kept up with technology. I don’t think that our forefathers saw telephoto lenses, you know, when they were writing it out, so listen, I’ll take the line. I just need to know.

Diane Sawyer:
The paparazzi themselves, of course, have been heard to say, "Look,he’s a grown – up."

Brad Pitt:
"Shouldn’t be running around" …

Diane Sawyer:
Exactly.

Brad Pitt:
"Buck naked."

Diane Sawyer:
Yeah. I mean, "What is he going to think when he comes out like that?"

Brad Pitt:
Well, yeah. Listen, I never expected it to come out. That’s what I’m saying.

Diane Sawyer:
No, but when you walk out the door like that.

Brad Pitt:
It was in a private property and, believe me, I checked it out ahead of time, because I’m paranoid. I’m paranoid of these things. Well, see, I would hate to think I couldn’t have these special moments, you know? Because they are, I mean, come on, it was a special moment. And they’re private moments. And again, you know, common decency. That’s what I think.

Diane Sawyer:
Private moments, which brings us back where we began — talking about what he wryly called "this Charlie Brown year," a year he can’t wait to leave behind.(on camera) What is a Charlie Brown year? What do you mean?

Brad Pitt:
A Charlie Brown year?

Diane Sawyer:
Yes.

Brad Pitt:
It means you can have the best intentions, but you’re still going to end up with rocks in your Halloween bag, you know? You just have periods where you know, your number’s not coming up. Things aren’t working right. I just call it the Charlie Brown year.
People have much worse years, and people survive. That’s what’s, you know, that’s where — it’s just when you don’t think you — you’re not sure you can take much more, you know? You find something. And you get over that hump.

Diane Sawyer:
And you said you’re getting to the end of it?

Brad Pitt:
I don’t want to make a big deal. I mean, we’ve all done it. We’ve all gone through tough times, and we all will continue to. That’s all. I’m not asking for sympathy or not even empathy, just stating the facts

Diane Sawyer:
Speaking of the paparazzi, there was something we noticed as we finished the interview. We came out of the club where we did the interview, looked up and right there in the window up above us was a huge telephoto lens

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