ВСЁ, ЧТО ВЫ ХОТЕЛИ ЗНАТЬ ОБ АЛЕКЕ БОЛДУИНЕ, НО БОЯЛИСЬ СПРОСИТЬ
Movieline May 1994 (продолжение)
Q: Have you always been conscious of your looks?
A: [Laughs] No. I wake up in the morning and all I see is what's wrong with me.
Q: You went through a period where you labeled yourself a "womanizing jerk."
A: Yeah, I wasn't straight with a lot of people. I was a guy who grew up with no money and no special qualities. When you become successful in this business and you've got a lot of money, it's a very potent blend. You meet beautiful women, you've got a lot of time on your hands, people pay attention to you a lot more than you deserve - I acted out on that as much as most young guys do who come to that place.
Q: When did you wake up to not being that?
A: About a year before I met my wife. All of 1989, when I shot The Hunt for Red October, I really got tired of wasting all that energy. I had just turned 30 the year before. I filmed Talk Radio, Miami Blues, and I came out of 1988 fed up with the crap I'd been through. What I wanted to do was just face it: I'm 30 and I'm going to be 35 and then 40 and if you want to get married and have a family what are you going to do? How are you going to live your life? What kind of a life are you going to have? Do you want to be one of these guys who's 55 and still trying to bag some 25-year-old actress? There are these guys who just don't want to let it go. I wanted to settle down.
Q: How did you know you were ready to let it go with Kim?
A: I met a woman who just wouldn't put up with that. A relationship with her had to be the way I now realize it has to be. My wife and I are very interconnected, very aware of each other. Our lives are very intermingled. My wife's the number one priority.
Q: Full time.
A: Oh man, you've got that right. Oh, baby.
Q: Have you ever met anyone like her?
A: Never. My favorite line among my friends: I called my friend Ronnie Dobson, a playwright, and said, "I don't know what to get Kim for Christmas. What do you think Kim wants most as a gift?" And he paused and said, "To return to her native planet."
Q: What do you find so endearing about her?
A: There's a naivete about her. She just doesn't get it. And that's what I love about her, that she doesn't get it. I look at Kim and I see somebody who could have had a lot more of the riches of this earth if she was more out for herself, if she was more selfish. She certainly would have all of the millions of dollars that her plaintiff in the case against her assumed she had. They couldn't believe she wasn't as avaricious as they imagined her to be.
Q: Did that lawsuit over Boxing Helena bring you closer together?
A: Oh yeah.
Q: Did you feel it was the two of you against every one else?
A: No, the business is what it is. The real essence of this case is, there's a certain kind of politics among creative people. I don't say to you, "You know, Larry, everybody days you're really good shooter as a director, but really think you know dick about a screenplay or how to direct actors. So when we work together, I'm going to be a little uptight and will be keeping my eye on you, because I'm not sure you can cut it." No one goes into a room and says that. The opposite is true. You say the most reassuring, positive things, knowing that all the material terms and conditions of the contract are being worked out by legal representatives outside of the room. If you're the director and I'm the actor, you and I have a very vital relationship to protect, and some of it is protected by a lot of blind reinforcement and approbation, none of which should be taken very seriously. And this was a case in which somebody, for the first time in history, went into a courtroom and said, "Did you say such-and-such?" And Kim said, "Yes, I did." And [that person] turned to a jury at the end of the case and said, basically, "Shouldn't these rich movie stars be held to the same standard that we're held to? That they should mean what they say and say what they mean?" And the jury went, "You're goddamn right they should! Jesus Christ, I'm a postal worker making six bucks an hour…" And they felt they could really drill it to her. And they did.
Q: What do you want for the two of you?
A: For us to have great memories. I'm looking at a woman who is an international beauty, who's in the movie business. She's been wealthy, she's dated men, traveled, been everywhere in the world except for Australia and Ireland. I'd say to her, let's go to Hawaii. Been there. Africa? Been there. Tokyo? Been there. Europe? Been there. One time I said to her, "I hope you and I get a stockpile of great memories." And our wedding was one. I wanted it to be sincere. Christie Brinkley said she had gone to a wedding that was more like a coronation it was so unreal, but that ours was really pretty.
Q: Were you actively seeking wife?
A: No. I wasn't anxious to get married. But I was fascinated by the idea of who I would marry. I know I'll never get married again.
Q: How can you say that?
A: Because I know I'll never get out of this marriage. Never. If my wife and I didn't split up by now with the shit we've been through…[Laughs]
Q: How much time do you spend with Kim?
A: A lot. Five times more that anybody that I've ever known before.
Q: Do you get hassled much in public together?
A: I had a guy come up to us at a sushi restaurant recently, sat down at our table and said, "Hey you guys." I thought: problem. I'm very protective of my wife and the first thing I thought of was how far away is this guy's face from my right hand? I felt myself sit back and torque my body so that I could rotate and send my fist right into his face. For a moment my wife was really uptight - the guy was drunk and had an eerie glow to him. He finally was asked to leave and he left. But what do you do? I tend to overdo it at times. Years ago, I was in New York and my girlfriend at the time was bent over on First Avenue tying her shoes and a man bumped into her and her head cracked into the corner of a building. I was in a bad mood and grabbed this guy and spun him around. He was a gnarly-looking older guy maybe 50, and he had an accent. He said, "Vat, vat? I do nothing!" Then I saw him put his hand in his coat and I punched him in the face as hard as I could. His feet went out from under him and he landed on his back. Then two Tony Danza-type Italian guys came flying out of this garage and they wanted to kill me: "What are ya doing punchin' him? He's an old man. You like if we fuckin' punch you, hah?" They were all over me and I thought, here we go. Everybody's looking for a place to put that energy, everybody's got a lot of anger.
Q: Do you carry a gun?
A: Kim asked me if I wanted to buy a gun. I said no, because if you buy a gun you have to be ready to use it. But after the L.A. riots I thought about getting a gun. I'm married, I've got to protect my wife - what do you do? So I was talking to these prop guys as I held this pistol. One said, "Yeah, that's a good gun." The second guy said, "Yeah, but that's not your house gun, this here's a small caliber, it's not a stopping gun. You don't want a clip gun that can get jammed, you want a Colt." The third guy said, "That's not your house gun, a shotgun's your house gun. That way you don't have to be a good shot, you just aim in a direction and you'll get a piece of him." I went home and said to Kim, "A shotgun is your house gun." Like it's all my wisdom now. Kim's going, "Aha, I see, all right darlin'."
Q: Can you usually recognize who will be a problem?
A: Your ordinary people are generous. The people who are not forth-coming with my wife, who are not polite or positive, tend to be the wives of directors. People in the business.
Q: How do people respond to you?
A: I get a very respectful and low-key reaction. I'm not Tom Cruise where they're lining up outside my hotel room picketing. And I've crossed the line age-wise, too. I'm not a young leading man featured in Tiger Beat magazine. More that I care to, I have young, attractive girls, not women, batting their eyes and saying, "Hi, how are you? Could you give my phone number to your brother Billy?"
Q: Are there any talented people out there today who you would like to work with?
A: Oh, yeah. I'll tell you somebody who I always wished I could work with, because she's the most missed performer in the film business today: Jane Fonda. Jane Fonda is beautiful, she was funny, she was extraordinarily sympathetic, she was powerful, she could act, she had an intellectual credential that could make you believe her in roles a lot of actors can't play, like a psychiatrist. She had it all. A lot of actresses today, they're so serious, you can see their veins popping in their forehead they want that Oscar so bad. They're white-knuckling every frame on film. Where's next Jane Fonda? Somebody having a good time who's sexy and funny and alive.
Q: Besides Patriot Games, Harrison Ford replaced you in The Fugitive. What did you think of that film?
A: It wasn't at all the kind of movie I would have made. I can see now where that's why they didn't want to make the movie with me. Walter Hill was going to direct the movie, and we sat down with people from Warner Bros. And Walter started talking about Dostoevsky and mytho-poetic iconoclasm of the character Kimble and the guys from Warner Bros. Blinked a couple of times and their eyes glazed over and it was like, Get these people out of here.
Q: Ford's films are big box office. Does it irk you at all when you see films he's in which you wanted?
A: He's a brand name.
Q: do you know him?
Q: Would you want to know him?
A: No. But that's nothing personal. I have no desire to know most actors.
Q: Part of that must be the frustration an actor like yourself must feel when competing for certain parts. You've been up for some big ones, haven't you?
A: I went to audition for GoodFellas. I went to Scorsese's apartment in midtown. If he told me to jump out the window I would have done it to get the part. I was aching. But it was like I was in a blackout. What the fuck am I doing there? What am I supposed to say? Am I supposed to say something now to make you do something for me? WHAT IS THAT? HOW CAN I FIND OUT? I wanted to rip the plaster off his walls to find the fortune-cookie-size piece of paper that has the answer for what I'm supposed to say to make this man give me this job. I'll drill through the walls with my finger nails, my teeth. But there is no answer. The hour goes by and Scorsese says, "Okay, thank you very much." I leave and I don't get the job. Ray Liotta got it and he was great in it, nobody could have done it better. There are so many movies I've wanted to do, that I've begged to do. I wanted to do The Godfather, Part III, everybody knows that. One of the most paralyzing moments of my life was getting the FedEx'd script. I went numb. I took the script with me to Central Park and when I opened it I started to hear the music. It could have been an episode of "Lavere and Shirley" and I would have gone, "Hey man, I'm in." I remember one real black-belt-genius studio executive was offering me one more bogus comedy after another and I kept trying to explain why I didn't want to do them. I'll never forget this moment. I'm having lunch with this guy and he looks at me and goes, "Aha. Aha. I get it. I see what you want now. You want the good stuff."
Q: How are things now for you as getting the "good stuff"?
A: Tough. I would have loved to have done Lestat in Interview With the Vampire. I would love to be in an absurd costume drama like that, that's ripe for visual imagery. To be in this business and have tremendous integrity and only make distinguished choices is very tough. Denzel Washington's career is an enormous luxury. Compare him to Wesley Snipes. Do you think that they set out for it to be that way? All actors set out for the same thing: to make both entertaining films and important films.
Q: When you decided to become an actor, what misconceptions did you have about the business?
A: I didn't think that it ate its young the way it does. I thought it was more in the interest of the powers-that-be to cultivate and bring along people that they had faith in. But it's very adversarial. People are driven by fear. One wrong decision can ruin your life or derail you for a significant time. There's a lot of money at stake. Paul Newman is a friend and I asked him how the business has changed and he said, "Failure is much more expensive now than it was."
Q: Writer Richard Corliss wrote in Time: "Hollywood doesn't quite know what to do with Alec Baldwin. He keeps disappearing into his roles."
A: I'm not convinced of this, but I'm beginning to think that that's a hindrance to a successful career in films at this time. The times demand people other people can identify with and be comfortable with.
Q: How lonely is acting?
A: It's lonely. You have to have other people there. Acting demands these peculiar forums to have something special. The curse of the actor is that you're always boring everybody around you because you're trying to make them into audience.
Q: Are you a complex person?
A: On the simplest level
Q: Are you an optimist or pessimist?
A: I'm very optimistic about everything when I'm away from the movies [laughs].
Q: How'd you survive the earthquake?
A: A lot of things broke. I wasn't scared but I was upset days later. I never had such a profound delayed reaction to something. The inevitability of it. It let a lot of people know there is a God. Los Angeles is a fairly godless place.
Q: What's the most embarrassing thing that's happened to you?
A: When I was a kid, we always had secondhand cars and in the winter time we'd have to push-start my father's car. It was like a scene from a John Hughes movie where all the dads would be in their suits and get in their new cars and drive out of their driveways and here I was pushing my father's car down the street.
Q: Weren't you in a serious car accident in1983?
A: An old lady in a big Cadillac made an illegal left turn right in front of my Karmann Ghia Volkswagen in a rainstorm. My car was crushed into an accordion and I hurt my neck and my back. Her car didn't have a scratch on it. Which changed my mind about transportation in L.A. forever. I will never have a convertible and I will never have a small car again.
Q: Last question: You've complained about studio executives being petrified to make any decisions. If you were in their shoes would you know what to do?
A: I don't have a fucking clue. I've got to get up in the morning and get through the day. I don't have any answers. I've got to go with my instincts. I'm another animal in the jungle, man. And in the background in my heart I hear OOOOO aaaaa whaaaa - all day long I hear those jungle sounds. I'm trying to figure it out.