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Clint Eastwood reflects on age, America and acting



By Jake Coyle

Ahead of his Broadway adaptation "Jersey Boys" on Friday, Clint Eastwood, 84, shares his thoughts on how to stay young, his first time acting and why America is "floundering":

ON DIRECTING LATE IN LIFE

You have more experience as you get older. You have more to draw on, as long as you don't lose your faculties. You can play on that if you're lucky enough genetically or you take good enough care of yourself, or a combination of the two. You can go ahead and experiment with things. There's so many different stories to tell out there. You can be 21 or 81. ... If you tell yourself, "I'm too old to do that" - bulls---. You're not too old to do anything.

ON HIS FIRST ACTING EXPERIENCE

As a kid, I didn't know what I wanted to do. I was forced to do a one-act play when I was in an English class. ... We had to put it on for the senior high school. This was junior high school. Jesus. We were all talking about cutting school and not showing up. And I did the play and it was successful. Everybody kept going around saying, "Oh that was fun." And I said, "Yeah, but I never want to do that again, ever." I was adamant about it. And here I am.

ON AMERICA

I think we're floundering. Both of the last two regimes got into a spending spree that put us into a recession longer than any recession before. Everybody talks about living within your means, but nobody really wants to do it, at least in government. I have strong feelings about that because I was born in 1930. I was a Depression kid. It was a long time before my parents got stable. I lived with grandparents and various relatives while they were struggling, so it's just engrained in me.

ON MISSING ACTING

No, not particularly. There are less parts as you get older. But you can also do things like "Gran Torino" where you can experiment with some of your past things.

ON CASTING

Selling yourself as an actor is tough to do. You go in there, you do interviews. There's 10, 15 guys your height, weight, everything and they all want the same thing. You're going, "Oh, s---. What are the odds?" The odds were against me for quite a few years, say from '53 to '59. I did a lot of other jobs other than acting, that's for sure. That's why when I'm casting, I always cast off-types for stuff. Otherwise, I'd hire everybody. Because I've been there.

Join the discussion

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Neal Berke June 16 2014 at 7:20 PM

Clint may not miss acting but I miss him!

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3 replies
Richard June 16 2014 at 8:02 PM

I would love to see him walk right up to Obama, and say "Go Ahead Punk Make My Day". Priceless.

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44 replies
captjameslee June 16 2014 at 7:25 PM

clint for presiden. go staighten out this bulls****

Flag Reply +98 rate up
13 replies
debnaert June 16 2014 at 7:53 PM

Well.... on the subject of the depression.... I was there.... I watched what happens when the GOVERNMENT destroys the economy... wake up people.... our country has suffered so badly under this liberal leftie fascist.... ONLY the republicans KNOW how to kick start the economy!

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49 replies
DebbieHall11151@ June 16 2014 at 7:41 PM

We love you Clint! You are the man and boy oh boy do you make sense. We have always loved your work.. Blessings for health and joy!

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7 replies
quincy_maxwell June 16 2014 at 7:37 PM

He's retiring. I'm crushed.

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2 replies
gerald pagano quincy_maxwell June 16 2014 at 11:10 PM

I"M sick over it

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burton99x quincy_maxwell June 17 2014 at 9:07 AM

he is 84 let him go....

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1 reply
goodgrief61945 burton99x June 17 2014 at 10:57 AM

I look worse than him, and I'm "only" 68.

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captjameslee June 16 2014 at 7:22 PM

YES CLINT let me get out my crying towel. i'm sure you could play peter pan if you wanted to and if they didn't hire you you would see that they never worked in that city again. you always will be the greatest actor on the planet. captjameslee@aol.com

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4 replies
antiquefla June 16 2014 at 9:29 PM

He is a true patriot. His comment at the last Republican convention, "Obama is the biggest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people," will go down as one of the most insightful and gutsy comments ever delivered by a keynote speaker. Too bad America wasn't listening. We're paying dearly for affirmative action in the White House. Qualifications do matter!!

Flag Reply +8 rate up
rbnhall6 June 16 2014 at 11:14 PM

The man is a class act!

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miryerhart June 16 2014 at 11:16 PM

Though I've never met Clint, I know a number of people who do know him. One common trait they all agree on...he's as down to earth as they come. Fame and Fortune hasn't changed that fact !!! Hope he keeps in the business for years to come.

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