Anjelica Huston reveals 50-year-old grudge, battles with Bill Murray and Oprah, and why she'd still work with Woody

When it comes to a harsh review she received 50 years ago for her first film, Anjelica Huston has neither forgotten nor forgiven.

Critic John Simon wrote of the actress's debut performance in 1969's A Walk With Love and Death, directed by her father, John Huston: "There is a perfectly blank, supremely inept performance by Huston's daughter Anjelica, who has the face of an exhausted gnu, the voice of an unstrung tennis racket, and a figure of no discernible shape." (A gnu, in case you're wondering, is a type of antelope.)

It was the only review blurb Huston included in her 2014 autobiography A Story Told Lately: Coming of Age in Ireland, London, and New York and provided for umbrage from the 67-year-old in a new no-effs-given interview gone viral that the actress conducted on the press rounds for her latest film, John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum.

"It sticks with you. And now that you’ve reminded me, it will stick with me for another ten years," Huston explained to Vulture's Andrew Goldman. Told he wouldn't have even brought it up had she not included it in her memoir, Huston retorted: "No, I completely accept that. I think the news there is he’s dead and I’m not."

Simon, however, is still alive. He's 93 now, Goldman informed Huston.

"He’s dead as far as I’m concerned," she shot back.

21 PHOTOS
Anjelica Huston Jack Nicholson
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Anjelica Huston Jack Nicholson
American actor Jack Nicholson with American actress Anjelica Huston at a Screen Directors Guild showing of Alan J. Pakula's 'The Parallax View', 10th June 1974. (Photo by Frank Edwards/Fotos International/Getty Images)
008689 01: Actor Jack Nicholson stands with Anjelica Huston at the Cannes Film Festival May, 1974 in Cannes, France. Nicholson won the festival's Best Actor award for his performance as a military policeman in the film 'The Last Detail.' (Photo by Liaison)
Anjelica Huston and Jack Nicholson during Mabel Mercer in Concert at the Dorothy Chandler Pavillion in Los Angeles - March 21, 1978 at Dorothy Chandler Pavillion in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
American actors Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston attend the New York Film Critics Awards dinner at Sardi's restaurant, New York, New York, January 1977. (Photo by Tim Boxer/Getty Images)
American actors Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston attend the Academy Awards ceremonies together, Los Angeles, California, March 29, 1976. (Photo by Fotos International/Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - MARCH 3: Actor Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston attend Tribute Gala Honoring Jack Nicholson on March 3, 1983 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
Ava Gardner, John Huston, Anjelica Huston and Jack Nicholson (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
UNITED STATES - JULY 01: Anjelica Huston and Jack Nicholson (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - circa 1985: Actor Jack Nicholson with his partner, actress Anjelica Huston. (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
PRIZZI'S HONOR - Airdate June 13, 1985. (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images) JACK NICHOLSON;ANJELICA HUSTON
NEW YORK CITY - SEPTEMBER 12: Actor Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston attend the premiere party for 'Amadeus' on September 12, 1984 at the Limelight in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston during 'Amadeus' Premiere - September 12, 1984 at Lowe's Tower East Theater in New York, New York, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
Actor Jack Nicholson with his partner, actress Anjelica Huston with their awards from the New York Film Critics' Circle, 1985. (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - circa 1985: Actor Jack Nicholson with his partner, actress Anjelica Huston. (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
Lindall Hobbs, Jack Nicholson, and Anjelica Huston (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
382233 01: Actor Jack Nicholson stands with Anjelica Huston at the premiere of 'Terms of Endearment' November 23, 1983 in New York City. Nicholson won six major Best Supporting Actor awards, including the Oscar, for his performance in the film. (Photo by Maureen Donaldson/Liaison)
Jack Nicholson, Anjelica Huston, and Huston Family (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 01: Anjelica Huston and Jack Nicholson (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
Anjelica Huston and Jack Nicholson during 58th Annual Academy Awards at Dorothy Chandler Pavillion in Los Angeles, CA, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, UNITED STATES - CIRCA 1970's: Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston arriving at Beverly Hilton Hotel on circa 1970's in Beverly Hills, United States. (Photo by Tom Wargacki/WireImage)
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Huston has a right to be peeved. Read the quote again and you'll notice Simon – considered one of the snider critics of his time – is taking aim almost entirely at her physical appearance, rather than her actual performance.

Despite, yes, some obvious nepotism involved, Huston went on to become one of the most respected actors of her generation, making indelible marks on films like The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981), Prizzi's Honor (1985), Enemies: A Love Story (1989), The Grifters (1990), The Witches (1990), The Addams Family (1991), Buffalo '66 (1998), and The Royal Tenenbaums (2001). She won an Oscar for Prizzi's Honor, one of three times she was nominated.

The interaction about Simon's snub was hardly the only eyebrow raiser in the must-read interview, which was reminiscent of a similarly frank, pull-no-punches conversation with Quincy Jones from early 2018. Among some other topics discussed:

On how Oprah Winfrey never spoke to Huston again after losing the Oscar to Huston: "She never had me on her show, ever. She won’t talk to me. The only encounter I’ve had with Oprah was when I was at a party for the Academy Awards, a private residence. I was talking to Clint Eastwood, and she literally came between us with her back to me. So all of the sudden I was confronted with the back of Oprah’s head. … Nobody else would dislike me so much as to literally, physically come in between the person I was talking with that way. But I admire Oprah. God knows, she’s made some big steps."

On the public’s turn against Woody Allen: “I think that’s after two states investigated him, and neither of them prosecuted him.” [Asked if she’d work with again]: “Yeah, in a second.”

On Jack Nicholson's cocaine use: "Never took overt amounts. He was never a guzzler. I think Jack sort of used it, probably like Freud did, in a rather smart way. Jack always had a bit of a problem with physical lethargy. He was tired, and I think probably, at a certain age, a little bump would cheer him up. Like espresso."

On being arrested at Jack's house when Roman Polanski raped a 13-year-old girl: "Well, see, it’s a story that could’ve happened 10 years before in England or France or Italy or Spain or Portugal, and no one would’ve heard anything about it. And that’s how these guys enjoy their time. It was a whole playboy movement in France when I was a young girl, 15, 16 years old, doing my first collections. You would go to Régine or Castel in Paris, and the older guys would all hit on you. Any club you cared to mention in Europe. It was de rigueur for most of those guys like Roman who had grown up with the European sensibility."

On how nothing's really changed despite the #MeToo movement: "I was at the hairdresser’s yesterday, and I heard tales of such horror from women. There was one other client and two girls who were working in this rather small hairdressing shop. And one of the girls had been passed a Mickey Finn in a bar and had woken up on a couch with a guy ejaculating wildly all over her face. And as she was telling the story, another girl who worked in the salon came in and said, 'The weirdest thing happened to my friend last night. She was found at four in the morning in the Wilshire district, coatless, shoeless, with scratches and bruises all over her body. She doesn’t know whether she was raped. So, I’m trying to stop her from having a bath because we need to get her to the police.'

"Frankly, I think there’s a whole element of guys who will get up to what they want to get up to. I didn’t think Brett Kavanaugh was all that believable. And yet this whole thing continues to be whitewashed and whitewashed and whitewashed. On the other hand, there is a thing called a male imperative, and it is maybe stronger than any #MeToo movement, because it happens at birth. I have a great 3-year-old nephew who made his way over to my umbrella rack the other day and pulled an Irish walking stick out and said, “I am the leader of the universe.” Girls don’t do that."

On strife with Bill Murray: "He was a shit to me on Life Aquatic. The first week I was there, we were all in this little hotel, and he invited the entire cast to go and have dinner, except me. And everyone came down for dinner, a little dog-faced about my not being invited, and they were all like, “Oh, you know, we don’t really want to go.” That was worse than anything. … I think we met again in Florence, because that movie was shot all over Italy, and we were doing a scene at Gore Vidal’s house in Ravello, and he said, “Hey, how’ve you been? I missed you.” I said, “You’re full of shit. You didn’t miss me.” He looked all confused for a moment. He’s been a little nicer to me since. He showed up at my husband’s funeral. He couldn’t have been nicer that day. He showed up. A lot of people didn’t."

She also talked about John Wick 3 a little bit.

17 PHOTOS
Anjelica Huston out and about in recent years
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Anjelica Huston out and about in recent years
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 30: attends NRDC Night of Comedy event on April 30, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by ECP/GC Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 24: Anjelica Huston attends the 2019 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Radhika Jones at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on February 24, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 21: Anjelica Huston speaks onstage at the UCLA IoES honors Barbra Streisand and Gisele Bundchen at the 2019 Hollywood for Science Gala on February 21, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for UCLA Institute of the Environment & Sustainability)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 21: (L-R) Gerard Butler, Anjelica Huston and Rebecca De Mornay attend the UCLA IoES honors Barbra Streisand and Gisele Bundchen at the 2019 Hollywood for Science Gala on February 21, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for UCLA Institute of the Environment & Sustainability)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 21: Rebecca De Mornay and Anjelica Huston arrive at the Hollywood For Science Gala at Private Residence on February 21, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 21: Anjelica Huston attends the UCLA IoES honors Barbra Streisand and Gisele Bundchen at the 2019 Hollywood for Science Gala on February 21, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for UCLA Institute of the Environment & Sustainability)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 19: Anjelica Huston is seen on January 19, 2019 in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by SMXRF/Star Max/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 07: Anjelica Huston attends Joni 75: A Birthday Celebration Live At The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion on November 7, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for The Music Center)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - MARCH 04: Actors James Jagger (L) and Anjelica Huston attend the 2018 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Radhika Jones at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on March 4, 2018 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Danny Huston (L) and Anjelica Huston attend NET-A-PORTER and MR PORTER partner with Letters Live on February 26, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for NET-A-PORTER)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Anjelica Huston attends NET-A-PORTER and MR PORTER partner with Letters Live on February 26, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for NET-A-PORTER)
VERNON, CA - FEBRUARY 16: Anjelica Huston attends Mr Chow 50 Years on February 16, 2018 in Vernon, California. (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for Mr Chow Enterprises )
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 30: Actress Anjelica Huston donates her old fur coats to PETA so that they can be recycled and cut into bedding for orphaned wildlife at PETA's Bob Barker Building on January 30, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Amanda Edwards/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 30: Actress Anjelica Huston donates her old fur coats to PETA so that they can be recycled and cut into bedding for orphaned wildlife at PETA's Bob Barker Building on January 30, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Amanda Edwards/Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - OCTOBER 03: (L-R) Founder and Principal, Adjaye Associates David Adjaye and actor Anjelica Huston speak onstage during Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on October 3, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 17: Actress Anjelica Huston (R) and niece, Stella attend the Oceana And The Walden Woods Project Present: Rock Under The Stars With Don Henley And Friends at Private Residence on July 17, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Earl Gibson III/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JUNE 07: Anjelica Huston poses for a photo with the Seattle International Film Festival Outstanding Achievement in Acting Award before the world premiere of the film 'Trouble' at Egyptian Theater, Seattle on June 7, 2017 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Mat Hayward/Getty Images for Seattle International Film Festival)
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