Powered by i.TV
October 6, 2015

Al Pacino thinks through a simple question about Jack Kevorkian - TCA Report

by Joel Keller, posted Jan 15th 2010 11:29AM
Al Pacino and Susan Sarandon at the Winter 2010 TCAsYesterday was cable's first day at the press tour, and a morning full of panels by the Discovery networks and a few other assorted cable entities was followed by three hours of star-studded panels for HBO. I mean, we're talking about one huge name in entertainment after another: Claire Danes, David Simon (The Wire), Rosie O'Donnell, Susan Sarandon, Tom Hanks, Steven Spielberg, Ricky Gervais. Oh, and Al Pacino.

Pacino is playing Jack Kevorkian in the HBO movie You Don't Know Jack (Sarandon is also in the movie), and during the panel discussion, Pacino was acting a bit... odd.

How odd? He wore sunglasses on stage for the first half of the panel. His answers were often rambling statements punctuated with occasional insight. And the Bronx native spoke in a modified Midwestern lilt that made us think he hadn't gotten Kevorkian out of his system yet. When asked what it was like filming a movie for HBO, he replied, very Zen-like: "Well, it's television. It's HBO, and so HBO is television."

The height of Pacino's oddity was when I asked him a simple question: Did he ever meet Jack Kervorkian? I'm printing the answer below in its entirety, un-edited, to show Pacino thinking through the question right on stage, to the point where he realizes that, huh, maybe meeting the guy he was playing was a good idea:

"I didn't meet Jack. I hope I will now in the future. Sometimes, for some reason, I don't take access to that, and sometimes I do. And I felt with Jack it would be because I thought the script was so well was complete in its portrait. I mean, it felt as though there was room, and I had so much research.

"And with the media the way it is, there's so many things you could see and study and to read his books and get close to him in that fashion. Also, Jack was about ten years older then because he had gotten out of prison. We don't do him that age. We're when he's younger. And I wanted to I just felt this instinctively.

"Now, (director) Barry Levinson met him and got a great deal out of it, and there were times when I wish I would have. But in the end, I felt close to him in another kind of way.

"There are characters you do it with, and it works, and there's some characters you just you back away from doing. I don't know why. I didn't do for instance, I'll give you examples. With Frank Serpico, I studied and went with Serpico everywhere. I got to know him, to go back into the past. Anyone who saw that movie, it was him that I got to know.

"With Dog Day Afternoon, I didn't feel like I wanted to know that guy for this role and my interpretation. Now, I may have made a mistake. I don't know. I still to this day think I did.

"And with this, who knows. I probably did here too. But if you have the opportunity to meet someone as an actor, it's just great fodder for you. It's wonderful source stuff that we die for. And so that I didn't take access to it, you know, is a question, and I don't know why I didn't."

Wow, right? At the end of the session, the near-70-year-old Pacino made like he was going to leap off the stage into the waiting scrum of reporters, which would not have ended well. All I'm saying is that, whatever Al is taking for his various senior ailments, I may want some of that when I get to his age.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum


Filter by:

this is called show biz,,,,,,,think about it for a second,,,,,,it is not much to say al pacino tells of his new role in upcomming movie,,,,,but to say pacino gives wierd answers now thats show bizz.....makes you post more ,,,,rememeber it is when there not taliking about you,,,this writer got you to talk about him,,,good or bad,,,so next time you will remember him......cossell did this and became a star,,,,,,we all just fell for the headline,,,he did his job.....to make us post.......

February 12 2010 at 7:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Senile? No way.
Eccentric and qwirky, probably.

The question was did you get a chance to meet Kevorkian.
In his answer he was actually praising the writer IMO.
The script was so well written, he knew the character inside and out, so there was no need for him to meet him. Of course, there is always doubt, so part of him thinks he may have made the wrong decision, and he still questions himself on his decision not to meet the real life guy from "Dog Day Afternoon".
Pacino is said to be a very shy guy, and I'm sure this interview was torture for him, but, he has to promote the film.

January 16 2010 at 6:24 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Keller is off base. You can blame Pacino for his age. I blame the youth of the reporter. I also can't believe the editor let this piss poor article get posted. Probably another, celebrity obsessed, flunky.

January 16 2010 at 6:14 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jonitia Johnson

There are people that think faster than they can talk. These people also think emotionally which is something you can not convey in language. That is what appears to be Al Pacino's problem. Why is it when a person does not understand another one, drug, alcohol, etc...has got to be involved? Maybe Al Pacino's is the normal one

January 16 2010 at 5:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Don Douglass

This is just another example that is common these days. A reporter asks an asinine, stupid, idiotic question that makes the people at home go "What" and wonder how the reporter got their job. It is a common thing on TV these days. In many cases, the reporter is not even listening to the answer, and is only interested in their own career. I laughed the other day when 3 reporters in a row asked the same question because they weren't listening to the other reporters' questions or the subject's answer.

January 16 2010 at 5:34 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Sounds like Al was using a little Mary-Jane?

January 16 2010 at 5:32 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to pgrlights's comment

He probably gets the good stuff. Can't wait for it to be legalized and taxed. Our system could sure use it, and I'm tired of the politicians and cops making money on the side for those who pay them off, while not paying income taxes...

...and prosecuting people who smoke a joint. 80% of all prosecutions since the meddling Nancy Reagan started her phoney "War on Drugs" have been against someone with a few grams, smokers. Millions of lives ruined, billions of taxpayer dollars wasted on enforcement, and the tobacco and chemical companies get to sell their poison...

...it's time to stop the phoney Prohibition.

January 16 2010 at 5:37 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Didn't they make a movie about what Al did with running around with Frank Serpico?

January 16 2010 at 5:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Sorry, Joel, but in this case YOU are the one who seems to be on some sort of medication. Pacino's explanation made perfect sense, and was very insightful. Maybe if you could find someone to help you with the Big Words?

January 16 2010 at 5:08 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I can appreciate that in person, the response may have come across as "scattered". But, in reading it, I don't see how that response is the "height of oddity" as you described it.

Maybe this is just a case of "you had to be there."

January 16 2010 at 4:49 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Uh...So he didn't give a simple "yes" or "no" reply. I didn't have a problem understanding his explanation. He left out a few prepositions and helping verbs, but it didn't bother me.

January 16 2010 at 4:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Follow Us


From Our Partners