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The “TimesTalks” Interview with George Clooney & Alexander Payne

Feb 10th, 2012 | By | Category: Celebrity Sightings

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This past Wednesday afternoon, the fabulous Miss Pinky Lovejoy, of the Thinking Pink blog, informed me that she had just scored two tickets to The New York Times “TimesTalks in L.A.” interview with actor George Clooney and his The Descendants director Alexander Payne.  Pinky wanted me to be her plus-one for the event, which was taking place that evening at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood, and, even though I have never been a huge George Clooney fan, I immediately accepted.  Now don’t get me wrong, I loved Ocean’s Eleven and think GC (yes, there’s another one!) is a great actor, but, unlike most females on the planet, he has never been my end-all, be-all.  I have always just kind of felt fair-to-middling about the guy.  Oh, how that was all about to change!  Pinky and I showed up to the event about an hour early and there were already a good 100 people in line.  Thankfully though, we were able to snag some second row seats and Pinky was literally on the edge of hers the entire time waiting for the interview to begin.  You see, George Clooney has long been Pinky’s “unicorn”.  While almost all of her other stalker friends had managed to snag pics with him over the years, she had somehow missed him at countless events and was beginning to think the guy didn’t exist.  So to make sure that this would not turn out to be yet another failed opportunity, she knitted George a scarf and wrote him a card, hoping that he would take pity on us and, in turn, pose for a couple of photos.

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The interview got started right on time and when George Clooney walked onto the stage, I am pretty sure my mouth fell open about a foot . . . and I might have even drooled a little.  In person, without the aid of professional make-up, lighting, and Photoshop, the guy still looked movie-star-perfect!  Like WOW!

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Unfortunately, the moderator for the event, who shall remain nameless, was beyond-words horrible!  How he managed to make an interview with George Clooney and Alexander Payne boring is absolutely beyond me, but he did!  About thirty minutes into it, I turned to Pinky and said, “I would rather stab a pen through my eye than have to sit here and listen to this guy any longer!”  Winking smile I swear, if Joel McHale and The Soup writers got hold of the video of the event, they would have a field day!  At one point, when an audience member asked George and Alexander what movies had inspired them over the years, the moderator opted to also give an answer himself.  Like, really??  I don’t think anyone was asking you!  And while Alexander seemed annoyed with the guy (and rightfully so!), George (gotta love him!) was repeatedly trying to help him out.  He continually attempted to lead the conversation in a much more interesting direction and gave beautifully-crafted answers to the many inanely-crafted questions.  All I could think while watching him was, George Clooney is not just nice, he’s kind.  I honestly do not think I would have been nearly as gracious in the same situation.

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George was also EXTREMELY funny, witty, and quick to laugh, as you can see above.  I can only imagine how dreadfully boring the whole interview would have been had he not been carrying it.

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George also seemed incredibly down-to-earth.  When the moderator opened up the interview to questions from the audience at the end of the evening and then realized there were no microphones set up in the auditorium, George immediately jumped out of his chair to help find one.  Um, LOVE IT!  And the tipping point for me was when a much older, slightly clueless, gentleman got up to ask a question, during which he told George that he had once submitted a script to George’s uncle, movie director Jose Ferrer, and that, in response, Jose had written him the kindest rejection letter he had ever received.  He happened to have the letter with him and George immediately jumped off of the stage to accept it, then gave the guy a hug, and posed for a photograph with him for the press in attendance.  The gentleman, who by that time was no longer near the audience microphone, then asked George if he wouldn’t mind moving a bit closer to him so that he could use the microphone affixed to George’s lapel to continue to tell his story (not kidding!), which went on . . . and on . . . and on.  The whole thing was absolutely unbelievable, but George, once again, was beyond kind about it and never rushed the man or acted in any way uninterested in hearing what he had to say.

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As soon as the interview was over, Pinky ran up to the stage and called George over to give him the scarf and card she had made.  George honestly could NOT have been nicer, thanked her, and happily agreed to pose for a pic . . .

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. . . which turned out ADORABLE!  <3

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Then I asked for a pic and George, once again, happily obliged.  Pinky often says about the friendlier stars she has met over the years, “That celeb was so nice, he/she would have braided my hair if I had I asked!”  Well, I am very happy to report that George Clooney was braid-your-hair nice.  Smile

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Alexander Payne was also incredibly nice and down-to-earth and actually kneeled down on the stage next to me so that my picture with him would come out better.  LOVE IT!

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Pinky and I took the above photo as we were walking to our car after the interview, squealing like little schoolgirls the entire way!  She captioned the pic on Facebook, “This is our ‘We just met George Clooney’ face!”  Smile

Watch live streaming video from nytimes at livestream.com

You can watch a video of the entire “TimesTalks in LA” interview with George Clooney and Alexander Payne by clicking above.

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Upon leaving the event, Pinky, ever the stalker, decided to search the WireImage website to see which stars were in attendance at the This Means War premiere that was taking place over in Hollywood that same night.  And she just about flipped when she saw that Kristin Cavallari was there, because it just so happens that KCav is my unicorn!  I absolutely LOVE the reality star and have not only missed her at several appearances, but when I did end up meeting her a few years back, the Grim Cheaper had a massive fail with our photo op.  So Pinky and I immediately headed right on over to Hollywood to try to catch my unicorn!  And while we didn’t end up seeing Kristin, we did get some pics with some other celebs including Holly Marie Combs (don’t we look like besties in the above photo?  Smile);

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Perrey Reeves, aka Mrs. Ari on Entourage;

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Melanie Lynskey – aka Rose, Charlie’s stalker on Two and a Half Men;

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Ashley Jones, from The Bold and the Beautiful and True Blood;

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and Francois Arnaud from The Borgias.  All in all it was a FABULOUS night that I am still on a complete and total high from over 24 hours later!  You can read Miss Pinky Lovejoy’s write-up of the evening on her blog here.

Big THANK YOU to Pinky Lovejoy, of the Thinking Pink blog, for inviting me to this event and for turning me into a huge George Clooney fan in the process!  Smile

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  Smile

Stalk It: Unfortunately, there is no stalking location for this one, but you can catch The Descendants in theatres now.

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5 comments

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  1. Allison says:

    Nice work! I need you to come with me to something sometime–I never know what to say to introduce myself to people. George is from my hometown!

  2. Lisa says:

    Love George Clooney! Love the post!

  3. Love it! Although the sentence “I immediately accepted” is a bit misleading. You forgot to mention how you tried to decline the invitation to allow a “bigger George Clooney fan” to attend. :) I’m glad I bullied you into going. LOL. ha ha ha.

  4. LAVONNA says:

    I knew George would be down to earth..he’s from our area. My brother went to NKU while George was a “student” there..he said George played a mean game of foosball. He said George was always in the rec center..never in class guess that’s why he flunked out..LOL. His dad, Nick, was newscaster in Cincinnati for years…very nice family. Glad you got to meet him and Pinky got her Unicorn. I think we pick the wrong months to visit.

  5. Beth says:

    Love it!! :)


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