Dick Cavett - Katharine Hepburn Two   View more episodes

Aired at 02:00 AM on Friday, Jan 15, 2010 (1/15/2010)      View all transcripts from this day


00:00:01Of the big things in life, isn't it?
00:00:03And now, on television, talking is a total necessity.
00:00:07Now, roosevelt against wilke -- roosevelt could talk so much better.
00:00:11He had a charming voice.
00:00:12Look at the power of winston churchill's voice.
00:00:15I mean, a great voice.
00:00:16You hear -- some folk look at me, they'd have no idea who I am.
00:00:20But the minute they hear the voice.
00:00:22So the voice has tremendous power.
00:00:24And I really think in the schools, we should start again.
00:00:29Why should we sound unpleasant and be a joke to the rest of the human race?
00:00:34Yes, and english take pride in criticizing us on that.
00:00:38And I -- they have some, of course, great actors, but I don't think they had anybody who could do what tracy could do.
00:00:43I don't think they're any better than we are.
00:00:45But I think, because they've done the classics, and this is why I did the classics.
00:00:49And lawrence langner said to me, "kate, if you don't, you're going to be considered " so, rather late in life, I thought, "well, he's right.
00:00:57" it was a red flag to you.
00:01:01Well, I think, again, you know, we must proceed.
00:01:04We must develop. we must improve ourselves.
00:01:06We can't just stand still.
00:01:09That's the trouble with a lot of our product.
00:01:12It's played down to the lowest common denominator.
00:01:16It's played down to the audience.
00:01:17And the audience doesn't wanna be played down to.
00:01:19They'll receive it. they'll laugh.
00:01:22The americans are an enormously polite people, but they want to be raised up.
00:01:26They've got more money now.
00:01:28They want to improve.
00:01:29A father doesn't want to see his children just, you know, travel along at the same clip that he did if they can improve themselves.
00:01:36Have you ever gotten really sore at an audience?
00:01:39I remember once at stratford, someone snapped your picture during a performance with a flash bulb.
00:01:44And you stopped and said, "there will be no more of that, " and it was one of the most dramatic moments -- well, I did that once in "coco," too.
00:01:53I said, "now here we have someone who is willing to destroy everyone else's good time " so, why don't we just stop?
00:02:03We haven't gone very far. we can begin again.
00:02:05And let her take as many pictures as she " that's why I would have been a great school principal.
00:02:13I have a feeling that woman was never seen or heard of again.
00:02:18Could you -- suppose you just finished a movie -- summertime, let's say.
00:02:23And then you go right into a play, or maybe you went to shakespeare, I don't remember.
00:02:28What do you tone down, or what do you tone up to go on the stage?
00:02:31I don't think there's any difference.
00:02:33Really? that answers that question.
00:02:35'Cause I'm so tired of that whole question.
00:02:37No, no -- to me, there was no difference, and to spencer, there was no difference at all.
00:02:41Because it's concentration.
00:02:43But if you and I were speaking -- I have a rather loud voice anyway.
00:02:47Voice, that's the difference.
00:02:48I'm loud, but, I mean, voice, you would -- and then you are aware when an audience is quiet and when you're looking at them.
00:02:55You don't have to pitch a thing up, even in a huge theater.
00:02:58I don't care particularly for the loudspeaker, but I think it's necessary because everybody is so used to hearing it loud now.
00:03:06The music is loud.
00:03:07Everything is sort of stepped up, you know.
00:03:10Yeah, a screen actor will fail in the theater without voice, but other than that, you don't think there's a major difference?
00:03:16No, 'cause I think it's concentration.
00:03:18Isn't it? yeah.
00:03:19One more thing -- did tracy ever resent the idea that people would say, "well, sure, he's great, but he can't play richard iii, and he can't play --" no, I don't think he thought anything about it.
00:03:29I don't think he thought anything about it.
00:03:31It would have never occurred to him to.
00:03:33I think it was -- to me, it was a great pity that he didn't do certain of those things.
00:03:38But he did what he wanted to do, and what suited him.
00:03:42And, uh, I think, had he stayed in the theater, he undoubtedly would have done many of those different things.
00:03:50But a lot of the actors at that time, the style was to go to hollywood and sign a long-term deal.
00:03:57And he needed the money.
00:03:58Had a boy who wasn't too well, and he just needed the money.
00:04:01And it suited him.
00:04:03He liked the warm climate.
00:04:05I like the cold climate.
00:04:06And then I was so tormented in the theater -- it frightened me so that I thought, " and it took me my whole life.
00:04:16I mean, I even did that in "coco" how I could have been insane enough to do "coco" when I couldn't, obviously, sing at all, you know?
00:04:24I study singing, I still study it.
00:04:26Fascinates me.
00:04:27It's taught me a lot about talking.
00:04:29And a certain amount of singing I studied with a woman named sue seton.
00:04:33And it's very difficult, the voice.
00:04:35Because, you see, you wonder -- [clears throat] MI MI MI.
00:04:38"Am I gonna be able to make a sound " did you ever lose a part to bette davis?
00:04:46Not that I know of.
00:04:47But, I mean, I might have.
00:04:50Do you like her?
00:04:51Yes, I do. I think she's awfully good.
00:04:54And, uh, but, um, I knew someone was -- I played what I wanted to play by and large.
00:05:02When I ever did a thing because I felt sorry for the studio because they had to pay me or something, then I was sorry that I'd done it.
00:05:11And one or two things I did because I disliked someone, and I knew that they were gonna be offered it if I didn't do it.
00:05:19So, I did it.
00:05:20 my reason -- I mean, you have to really want to do it.
00:05:25Do you know what I mean?
00:05:27Fundamentally, you have to think of every reason why not to do something, and if you can't give yourself a satisfactory answer, then you must just do it, mustn't you?
00:05:37I mean, you mustn't sit back.
00:05:38" because it's all scary.
00:05:43Were you among the people considered to play scarlet o'hara?
00:05:47Yes. I never knew that.
00:05:48Yes, the book was sent to me first.
00:05:51But the publishers.
00:05:52And I gave it to someone who was at the head of rko -- all these people will have to be nameless -- to read.
00:06:00And he gave it to his chief, sort of, of staff.
00:06:03And they read it, and said, "it's not a sympathetic " and then, when david bought it, it was going to be directed by my great friend, george cukor.
00:06:13Who, again, thought that it was wrong for me.
00:06:16Then after they'd looked for two years, george thought it was right for me.
00:06:20And it was at this point that my career had done the most dismal failure.
00:06:24And I had gone from offers of $150,000 and a percentage, and a piece of everything down to $10,000 for a picture, or no offers at all.
00:06:35In six weeks, my career dropped that far.
00:06:38" you probably weren't born.
00:06:42I never think of you as -- as being a failure. well, I've had my share.
00:06:46And, um, so david selznick sent for me.
00:06:49And he said, "we'd like to have you do a " and I said, "david, you brought me into the business, you and george, and I'm not gonna do a test.
00:06:57You know how I'd play it.
00:06:59And you've gone out on a limb to find an unknown girl.
00:07:03And you can't tell me you're going to be stupid enough not to find one.
00:07:07So, we'll have this -- let us say this.
00:07:09If you get within two days of shooting, within two days of shooting -- and the man who was doing the costumes has dressed me many times, many times, walter plunkett.
00:07:21He could do the first dress in 48 hours.
00:07:24" he said, "i have to begin the picture by " you send for me, of course, because I said, "you wouldn't have to pay me anything.
00:07:33And I know you well enough to know " and you just pay me off, it would be very cheap.
00:07:40And that would break my heart, and I have to protect myself " and I don't wanna have it announced, you see, and then they're sort of -- " when they found vivian.
00:07:56When you see that film now, do you have pangs?
00:07:58No, I haven't seen it since.
00:08:00And I never have pangs about anything.
00:08:02Once it's over, that's it.
00:08:03Not my nature. no pang. no regrets.
00:08:05 a pang is a waste of time.
00:08:08 hepburn, we need celluloid, and we're going to have to melt down all the films you've made except one, could you pick one?
00:08:19" okay.
00:08:23 we have a message, and we'll be right back.
00:08:28How do you decide if they're asking you to do something too dangerous or not?
00:08:31I know there are actors who take pride in the fact that they fell down those stairs, or they -- yes, yes, actors are sweet and silly.
00:08:38And I'm one of them.
00:08:39Have you ever had a debate with yourself where -- no, I learned to ride side saddle for jack ford.
00:08:46For what picture?
00:08:49Mary of scotland.
00:08:51And rode at a full run under the limb of a tree, and heard jack's voice way in the distance say, "kate, duck." and I ducked.
00:09:00Otherwise I would have been as dead as a door nail.
00:09:03And then I fell into the canal for david lean.
00:09:06I had to walk backward insummertime, and fall into a canal.
00:09:10And, of course, a canal is a sewer.
00:09:12I can't believe that.
00:09:14This is how stupid I am.
00:09:16Just stupid, stupid of me.
00:09:18And I used to go around -- 'cause I hate to wear clothes, you know.
00:09:23I'd wear my old rags, and then I'd put the make up on in the street, and, uh, leave my hair in curlers, and have a sombrero on, or something.
00:09:32So that I could get dressed and made up -- made up, five minutes and dressed, five minutes.
00:09:37So then I didn't have to sit and get exhausted.
00:09:42And what I did was, I would go around the community and knock on the door and say, "i beg your pardon, " and practically always they would say yes.
00:09:52And sometimes, they'd give me a roman bath.
00:09:54So, when I knew I was gonna have to fall into the canal, I went -- I cased the joint very carefully, you see.
00:10:01Well-trained in my youth to know a good house from a bad one.
00:10:05All those years as a cat burglar.
00:10:07Yes, all those years.
00:10:09And, uh, so a woman had a tub waiting, everything.
00:10:14And I thought, "well, now, I can't catch " so, they would -- the audience was told very carefully, "miss hepburn is doing this on purpose.
00:10:22" so I backed up just if I were backing up off this stage.
00:10:28Well, then I saw the movie.
00:10:31My feet went up in the air, my mouth opened wide, my eyes opened wide.
00:10:36And I never thought of my eyes.
00:10:40I brushed my teeth, I washed my mouth, I did all the things that one would imagine.
00:10:44And I never thought of my eyes.
00:10:45And I've had the eye infection ever since.
00:10:47You've never been able to shake the infection?
00:10:50You never can.
00:10:52You never can.
00:10:53Was anybody advising you you were silly to do this?
00:10:57No, no, no.
00:10:58Oh, no, they'd never advise you that you're silly, 'cause then they'd have to hire somebody to do it for you.
00:11:03And it doesn't look like anything.
00:11:05I mean, then you can't really do the scene.
00:11:07That's one of the hazards of the business, I think.
00:11:10I've seen that film several times.
00:11:12The first time I saw it, I sat through it again.
00:11:14He's a brilliant man, david lean.
00:11:18David lean may be my favorite.
00:11:19Oh, he's brilliant, brilliant.
00:11:21Nobody in the world like him. brilliant man.
00:11:24He knows more about film, really, but there are 100% concentration, you know?
00:11:30Are you the kind to ever storm off a set?
00:11:33No, I stay there and fight it out.
00:11:36You like that kind of behavior?
00:11:38I don't storm off.
00:11:39'Cause the man who goes off is lost.
00:11:41I mean, unless he keeps walking.
00:11:43And you can't keep walking if you're in it.
00:11:46Anybody ever walk out on you?
00:11:49No, no.
00:11:50No, I've never -- I've fond people amazingly amiable.
00:11:55People are nervous, you know?
00:11:57I think most actors are absolute angels.
00:12:01I think the whole -- all the sort of bad behavior comes from terror.
00:12:05I think -- now, I mean, I was brought up in a school where once you said you'd do it, you did it, you know.
00:12:14Now, I think this is too bad.
00:12:15And once you say you're going to be an actor, then, presumably, if you're going to do the thing eight times a week, or whatever you're supposed to do, you really have to -- it's a prison sentence.
00:12:25Because you've got to play if you're sick.
00:12:28'Cause if you don't play and you are a big star, it's an enormous disappointment to the audience.
00:12:34And I was brought up to play.
00:12:36I played for a month and a half with pneumonia " and couldn't get rid of it.
00:12:43I had a temperature of about 102 or 103 every time I started.
00:12:46Now, I'm tough, and I have a very strong constitution, and I am perfectly willing to do nothing but the one thing.
00:12:54You see, most people won't settle for that.
00:12:57How do you mean that?
00:12:58Well, I mean, most people try -- think they can lead two or three lives.
00:13:02I don't think you can.
00:13:04I think -- at least I can't.
00:13:05 it takes enough out of me, so that I can't do anything else.
00:13:09Did you ever wanna chuck it all, even on those nights when you were so sick with pneumonia and you had to go onstage?
00:13:15Oh, yes. sure.
00:13:17Oh, sure. oh, sure. oh, sure.
00:13:19But I think -- I mean, I think that goes -- that is discipline.
00:13:22And I think without discipline, there's no way to live.
00:13:26I mean, there's one person you can correct in life -- this I've learned -- and that's yourself.
00:13:32I can't worry about your character, but I can improve my own character.
00:13:37You're not the kind, then, to say, jack barrymore, "you're drinking yourself to death.
00:13:43" no, no, not unless I could really be of some help.
00:13:48If I could help him, and I felt that I wished to, then I would dedicate myself to that.
00:13:54That's an all-time job.
00:13:55To take care of somebody is an all-time job.
00:13:58To bring up a bunch of kids and try to make them -- it's an all-time job.
00:14:03So what are the poor women gonna do?
00:14:05You see, they're not the man.
00:14:06It's an all-time job for the man to make the living.
00:14:09Now, I certainly think that their job opportunities ought to be equal.
00:14:14No question about that.
00:14:16I can't see the difference between any of us.
00:14:18 can you imagine -- I can't see the difference between any race, any color, any sex.
00:14:24But I do think that the women as opposed to the men are in a spot because they have the children, and they have much more real interest in them than the men do.
00:14:36By nature? I think by nature.
00:14:39And if you haven't got it by nature, and I haven't got it by nature at all, don't have them.
00:14:46You know, do what you're gonna do, and do it.
00:14:49Don't do them both 'cause you just get split in half.
00:14:53You can give -- you see, a woman can give a man enormous confidence.
00:14:57And we all lack it.
00:14:59Or a man can give a woman enormous confidence and stay at home and do the cooking.
00:15:03Somebody's gotta give somebody some confidence somewhere.
00:15:06There is not just one way to kill a cat.
00:15:09There are many ways that are open, but you can't have it all.
00:15:13You cannot have it all.
00:15:15And this notion that you can have it all, you can't have it all.
00:15:18But to be able to realize that at an early age is a pretty good thing.
00:15:22No, I don't think so, unless you're stupid.
00:15:24Open your eyes, you know.
00:15:25I mean, I realized that at an early age.
00:15:27And I settled -- I knew absolutely.
00:15:31" she did a lot, but she had five and help in the house.
00:15:36Nobody has any help now.
00:15:39The women are really up against it.
00:15:41Your mother had how many children?
00:15:43She had six.
00:15:44And yet, she was very interested in birth control.
00:15:46Well, she did a lot of talking on birth control, a lot of talking on women's suffrage.
00:15:49And when she started out, she said she could remember wheeling tom and me in a baby carriage, and thinking, "well, here I am.
00:15:57a, degree, I'm supposed to be intelligent, and here I am.
00:16:05" now, dad -- who was a pretty smart guy -- felt this discontent.
00:16:12And he said, "you know, there's a woman named pankhurst, " well, pankhurst was the name of the great english suffragette who was speaking here.
00:16:22Was it sylvia?
00:16:23Ah, emmeline pankhurst was the great one.
00:16:25Sylvia pankhurst, I think, was the sister -- the daughter.
00:16:29I'm not sure.
00:16:31Can't tell you. can't tell you.
00:16:33One was sylvia, and one was emmeline.
00:16:35And she used to visit us when I was a kid.
00:16:38And, uh, mother, then, made these speeches, but she was there.
00:16:46And daddy was there at tea time.
00:16:48He didn't become a victim of being a surgeon, you know?
00:16:52He was there. and they were there.
00:16:54And, uh, I suppose that's why I never went out to dinner.
00:16:57You know, we led very home life.
00:17:00Very strong.
00:17:02And, uh, that house is just gone out of -- I gave it to -- the family gave it to the university of hartford just two years ago.
00:17:12People whose lives went to hell in hollywood, like jean harlow and all, did they in all cases, have no home life?
00:17:19I don't know.
00:17:20I mean, why somebody's life goes to hell, one doesn't know, does one?
00:17:24I mean, unless you're awfully wise.
00:17:26I had every possible advantage, and if my life had gone to hell, I would have had to be a dithering idiot, you know, really.
00:17:33Because I had every advantage.
00:17:35And I had money enough, also, to be able to say no.
00:17:38I didn't have anywhere near as much money as people think, but I had money enough to be able to say no.
00:17:44And I was smart enough here to get one of the first contracts which had a theater clause in it.
00:17:51And since my first pictures were a great hit, the theater cause was an absolute whip hand, and I could get whatever I wanted.
00:17:58What is a theater clause?
00:17:59Theater clause was to come back and do a play.
00:18:02And that was unknown in those days.
00:18:06And that was very important, and I said, " I was getting 50 at the time.
00:18:16And, uh, they offered me everything -- david selznick did.
00:18:20550, 750, 1,000, 1,250.
00:18:24" 'cause I thought, "they gotta know " do it.
00:18:32Now, that took a lot of nerve.
00:18:34And I called up dad and mother and I said, "well, they've come up to 1,250, " and dad said, " and then, for a lot of the time, I handled my own business.
00:18:44And when you handle your own business and don't have an agent, that's the way you have to do.
00:18:48Gee, that's great.
00:18:50It's sorta yes or no.
00:18:51But I think that's true in a lot of other things.
00:18:53'Cause I think life is thrilling in every possible direction, but I know that I can't have it all.
00:19:00I cannot have it all.
00:19:01I haven't had it all.
00:19:03I've had a wonderful life, a wonderful time, but I haven't had everything.
00:19:07I'm going through that now, at my age.
00:19:09I'm thinking there's so many careers I'm not gonna have.
00:19:11So many things I'm not gonna read, so many places I'm never gonna see.
00:19:14And it sorta paralyzes you. oh, no, no, no!
00:19:16Then do what you do, just do it the best you can.
00:19:20That's what's important.
00:19:21And if it doesn't interest you enough, and you have enough money, uh, stop and do something else.
00:19:26What can you say to comfort the people who didn't make it?
00:19:29You know the old "b" movie scene of, usually, a british actress is making up for a great star, and a ragged old lady comes in a says, "you don't remember me, but I used to be in this chair, and I had this dressing room.
00:19:42" you know those old -- that scene -- I don't think that ever happens.
00:19:49Maybe only in the movies.
00:19:52But, you know, there are people who must wonder "why the hell did hepburn make it and I didn't?
00:19:56 why the hell did i?
00:19:59" and better-looking, and can sing.
00:20:03[Laughing] but it isn't all luck.
00:20:08A lot of it's luck.
00:20:10A lot of it is luck.
00:20:12You see, I've survived a long, long time.
00:20:15If you have the right kind of looks, the right kind of voice, you kind of stand for something just a little bit new, and then you survive, and, uh, you change.
00:20:28You see, most people, I figure, have a reservoir that you walk into town with your little box of goodies, you know?
00:20:36And, "this is me, and this is what I have " then, after a while, you've sold all those goodies.
00:20:42And if you don't go away and fill up another box, you're just repeating.
00:20:48Then you're just growing old.
00:20:50And then for -- you know, certain people, there's a time when you're switching from, uh, "you're too old to do this, " and you have to figure out what are you and what really interests you?
00:21:07You see, we're all creatures of habit, and we get in a rut, and we run down that rut, happy as bugs.
00:21:14Well, sometimes you're bloody sick of what you're doing, and you haven't got the brains to stop.
00:21:21You know.
00:21:23And you could change.
00:21:25That's why -- really about this thing, I thought, "can you think of any really good reason not to do it ' ' or, 'oh, are they gonna find out how boring '" you know?
00:21:41And that was the only reason now, in a sense, not to do television.
00:21:46Because it certainly is a method of expression certainly is.
00:21:51Which, you know, has to be accepted as these things come along.
00:21:54How do you feel about having your political views known?
00:21:56Someone with your strength, you must be -- I'm not much of a politician.
00:22:00I always just say be on the affirmative and liberal side.
00:22:04Affirmative? yes.
00:22:06Don't be a "no" person.
00:22:08And yet, have horse sense.
00:22:10My family were very, very left of center, but I was always quoting them.
00:22:16I'm not a great political expert myself.
00:22:19Did you suffer from that in your community?
00:22:21Yes, very much.
00:22:23Ooh, ooh. very snubbed.
00:22:24That's why I got the old chip on the shoulder, and forged ahead, you know.
00:22:28" I think so. I think it's a great help.
00:22:32To be loved is very demoralizing.
00:22:35Could you have been hap-- yeah, I wanna stop and think about that.
00:22:40Could you be, um, happy in a repertoire company had you played every part you wanted and never made a movie?
00:22:47I guess what I'm asking is the fame important that comes from being an international film star?
00:22:52How important is that fame?
00:22:54I don't think you can answer that.
00:22:56You never -- if you have fame, you never feel that you have fame if you have the brains of a flea.
00:23:03'Cause fame is something that's over back of you.
00:23:06It ain't ahead. yeah, good.
00:23:09Not ahead at all.
00:23:10I mean, if you've done it, that's great.
00:23:12But what are you gonna do tomorrow?
00:23:14Is the only thing that matters.
00:23:17We must take a message today.
00:23:22Miss hepburn, could you have happily married humphrey bogart?
00:23:26It never occurred to me.
00:23:29I did.
00:23:30Didn't I marry him inthe african queen?
00:23:32 every time I see that, I think, "i wonder if they could have been " was he a funny man to be around -- lighthearted, serious?
00:23:40Uh, he was serious.
00:23:43He was enormously fair.
00:23:45He was very much of a gent.
00:23:47Very well born, frightfully good manners.
00:23:49Not a tough guy.
00:23:51Not at all. the exact opposite.
00:23:54Exact opposite.
00:23:55But he was one of the few actors, he really liked his profession.
00:24:00He really enjoyed winning the academy award.
00:24:04He really was proud of being an actor.
00:24:08He was doing what he wanted to do, and I've asked this -- betty McCall is a good friend of mine.
00:24:13And I think he was really -- he was well-trained.
00:24:17He was proud of it.
00:24:19This is not true of all actors.
00:24:20I think spencer would have liked to have been something else.
00:24:22I swear that I read somewhere once that tracy -- tracy said, um, "this is an odd, " I think he thought so, and I think bogey was not at all.
00:24:35Bogey was very secure within himself.
00:24:37Bogey drank a lot, but I don't think -- I think he just liked to drink.
00:24:42I mean, I don't think it was an escape or anything else.
00:24:46And he was on that trip, uh, uh, uh, to africa.
00:24:51Betty was with him and I was alone.
00:24:52 you feel all right?
00:24:55" " did you down in real african rivers and waters and take chances on getting bitten by various things?
00:25:04Uh, well, we weren't in the water because there's a disease, so that you cannot get wet.
00:25:11It's a terrible sort of inflammation of the kidneys, or something like that.
00:25:16That you can catch from that?
00:25:17 that's why edwina booth died.
00:25:19She did a picture 1,000 years ago, and, uh, she caught that very bad disease.
00:25:25They just said to me, keep out of the -- if you get your feet wet, dry them and powder them.
00:25:30This bug apparently enters any body opening -- pores, anything.
00:25:36When you were fixing the boat and all that stuff, a lot of that was in the studio.
00:25:41 yes, but not -- practically all of it we did down there.
00:25:45I suppose, you know, the boat got wet on the inside.
00:25:47And john huston, who was doing it, didn't know a hell of a lot about river traffic, you know, and the current would take us careening down.
00:25:56And when we would do it, going on a raft, you know, in mock-ups of a part of a boat, we'd get swept way over to one side, " and we'd lie flat.
00:26:08Otherwise, we would have been scraped right into the crocodile pit or something.
00:26:13So, it was -- you were heavily insured, I presume.
00:26:17I had no idea.
00:26:18But everybody was sick.
00:26:21The big joke was on me because I was rather self-righteous, and I thought, "well, I'm traveling with two drunks, " so, I drank lots -- lots of the water.
00:26:32Lots of the water.
00:26:33Everything you're not supposed to do.
00:26:35John never got sick -- huston never got sick, bogey never got sick, and I nearly died of the dysentery because the water was poison.
00:26:45Shows how sensible they were.
00:26:47You and your health measures.
00:26:49That was really funny.
00:26:51One episode there, I had -- I'm always busy getting to know people in a community that I know I'm never gonna be in again.
00:26:59So, I made an arrangement.
00:27:01I used to walk to work, and that first shot in the church, john looked at the church and they were methodists and they don't have steeples.
00:27:10" because he could pan down.
00:27:14So, methodist or no methodist, he waited while they built a steeple.
00:27:17In the meantime, I got to know a lot of people in the community.
00:27:20And they had wonderful hard wood there.
00:27:22So, I went to a lumber place and I got a lot of samples of wood because my family were interested in wood -- to take back, you know?
00:27:29A man said, "wouldn't you like to see a tree " " so, we made a date.
00:27:34By this time, the picture has started.
00:27:36My dysentery has also begun.
00:27:38And I'm absolutely -- I'm playing the organ, and they broke the record and the only thing I knew how to play " so, I was playing "lead kindly light," and their sense of what is a note is different than ours so that it was total discord.
00:27:55They'd found two black mambas in the ladies' john.
00:28:00So I couldn't go in there. the snake?
00:28:03Snakes. snakes.
00:28:04And, uh, the time of my watching the tree felled, 00 'cause we lost the sun, by then it was coming up.
00:28:12And finally, I said to john, "i have to go " and I said, "i have a date which I have to keep.
00:28:17" and he said, "kate, we'll keep your date.
00:28:20" and I said, "be enthusiastic about it.
00:28:25" so they all went to see the tree cut down.
00:28:31They drove out into the forest in jeeps, got there, the tree was half sawed through.
00:28:38A terrible lightning storm came up, hit the tree, the tree nearly fell on all of them instead of being pulled the other direction.
00:28:48They got soaked.
00:28:49They came home and I was lying, dying, you know, of the dysentery, with my little black man watching me and being sure that I was gonna leave this earth.
00:28:58And they all came in drunk.
00:29:00They went to the man's house who owned this lumber place, drank all his liquor, took all his clothes, and came home in dry ones.
00:29:09Had to wake me up.
00:29:10They kept the date, nearly got killed and you stayed home?
00:29:14Yes, even bogey behaved badly then.
00:29:16How would you have explained that to their survivors?
00:29:18I don't know.
00:29:19One second, were those real leeches on bogart?
00:29:22No, no leech would -- I said to bogey, "surely, you're a man.
00:29:25You're this great strong man, just take a leech " they were repulsive-looking.
00:29:32 I'm not gonna put any " you know, bogey was pretty skinny.
00:29:37So, everybody was making things and sticking them on bogey.
00:29:41And they wouldn't -- they'd just fall off.
00:29:43He was so bony, every move -- nothing would stick to him.
00:29:46Finally, they got something that stuck, but it wasn't a real leech.
00:29:49They looked like leeches, and they occurred in my dreams many times since seeing that film.
00:29:54We'll be right back.
00:29:56I'm talking with katherine hepburn, a lady you can also see in american film theater's a delicate balance by edward albee.
00:30:04Is there a kind of actor you can't work with?
00:30:07You know what I mean?
00:30:09No, I don't know what you mean, mr. cavett.
00:30:11What do you mean?
00:30:12I meant, uh, well, there was a time when there were people who were saying, "oh, all those method people.
00:30:18" and that sort of thing.
00:30:21And there were people saying, "i'd never " and yet, um, see, I don't think of brando as a limited actor.
00:30:29I don't think he is a limited actor.
00:30:31He's a brilliant actor.
00:30:32He may be a slightly limited person, but I don't think he's -- he's a brilliant actor.
00:30:37Did that offend you when an oscar was turned down -- I just thought it was silly.
00:30:42Why not withdraw your name?
00:30:43Just withdraw your name, and nobody'd vote for you.
00:30:46Just dumb.
00:30:47Well, maybe the idea came after -- oh, no, then that's foolish.
00:30:52Then you see whether you're nominated and withdraw.
00:30:54It doesn't make any sense. it's just silly.
00:30:56 scott did?
00:30:58I think he said it before he played the part, you know.
00:31:03You're either in a business or you're not in a business.
00:31:06Don't complicate it.
00:31:08And you're not that important.
00:31:09Nobody is. it's just foolish.
00:31:12I think I should go and pick 'em up.
00:31:14I should have gone and picked them up, but I really just didn't.
00:31:17I don't admire myself for it.
00:31:19I'm not that stupid.
00:31:21And the big moral stand about not running for a prize -- oh, no.
00:31:27Well, what would you have said if we weren't on television?
00:31:31Well, I wouldn't have said it.
00:31:33Oh, joseph cotton is in a delicate balance with you -- yes, and a lovely performance.
00:31:39He's absolutely wonderful.
00:31:41I thought maybe he had quit acting.
00:31:43No, no, no ,no.
00:31:45 he always just does it.
00:31:47And he's great. he's great.
00:31:49He gives a wonderful performance, true as true.
00:31:53I saw you the other night inphiladelphia story.
00:31:55Do you get plagued with questions about -- like, for example, when you get pushed in the face by cary grant, you go flat on your back.
00:32:02Did you hurt yourself? what'd you hit?
00:32:05Broke my back. been broken ever since.
00:32:07Are you kidding?
00:32:09I don't even remember it.
00:32:10Don't you know that scene where you come out with the golf clubs, and you throw them down and smash them.
00:32:14That's right at the beginning, yeah.
00:32:15And he comes back, and he just pushes you in the face, and you fall like a tree, just wham!
00:32:20Did you hurt yourself?
00:32:21No, I don't think so.
00:32:22I'm a pretty good, uh, athlete.
00:32:24Didn't bother me. I don't even remember it.
00:32:26 no, I don't remember it.
00:32:29It's a wonderful movie. it is?
00:32:32Yes, I saw it.
00:32:34Some of them I don't see.
00:32:37No, I don't remember that fall.
00:32:38Maybe you hit your head so hard that you've forgotten it.
00:32:40No, I don't think so.
00:32:42Are you sorry you never acted with olivier?
00:32:45Well, neither of us is dead yet, even though you may think so.
00:32:51[Laughs] pardon me.
00:32:55I think I speak for larry as well as myself.
00:32:59I'm terribly -- that's all right. don't blush.
00:33:02You'll be as red as I am in a minute.
00:33:06How could you?
00:33:07Are you sorry you have never yet acted with olivier yet?
00:33:11I don't know why I did that.
00:33:14Well, you thought it and you said it.
00:33:15Well, you still got a few good laps left in you.
00:33:18A few good laps or laughs?
00:33:20You still get around the track.
00:33:22Thank you very much.
00:33:23You're very encouraging, mr. cavett.
00:33:25I appreciate that.
00:33:27As long as we're on the subject of time and mortality, I've never heard a film actor say, "the reason I make movies is that people " it seems to me -- oh, no, I don't mind at all whether they remember me one minute.
00:33:44It's a great business, the greatest here is, thrilling.
00:33:48I don't know why they pay you.
00:33:50It's fascinating! fascinating!
00:33:52It's great to hear you say that.
00:33:54Oh, yes, you get to travel.
00:33:56You get to do fascinating things.
00:33:58You get to do some pretty boring ones at times, but most of those, uh, you can rise above.
00:34:05But the immortality idea -- that's of no interest to me whatsoever.
00:34:10In the year 2050 -- no, no.
00:34:11And I can't imagine anybody being dumb enough to be interested.
00:34:16I think the world goes on.
00:34:18I think everything becomes different.
00:34:20Is there any chance, I suppose that -- when we look at a movie that was made, now 40 years ago, they look silly.
00:34:28Bill of divorcement.
00:34:30Now, just a minute, I'm 40 years ago.
00:34:33Yes, you'd have to go up.
00:34:34They don't look silly to me.
00:34:36And lillian gish, mary pickford, lot of those pictures, a lot of the comedies -- I didn't realize that 40 years ago was that recent.
00:34:47It's 1973, and I started in 1932.
00:34:52That's 41 years ago.
00:34:54That gets in everything.
00:34:56And some of them were dull, and some of them were interesting.
00:34:59And I think that's true of -- you look at it, uh, uh, maybe with a different point of view.
00:35:05You look at silent pictures with a different point of view because they are different.
00:35:09But some of them are thrilling, I think.
00:35:11I think it's a great medium.
00:35:13Let me sharpen my point, as they say.
00:35:15There is film of doosa, for example, but they say it looks ludicrous.
00:35:19Or that was of bernhardt?
00:35:21But that in the early, early days of film.
00:35:23Who does it look ludicrous to?
00:35:24It might not look ludicrous to me.
00:35:26 you might see something -- well, I would see her.
00:35:30And I would see -- I mean, you're stupid if you're influenced by a costume, or if you're influenced by the fact that the mechanics of the thing weren't as well thought-out then.
00:35:39Now, we're very well-protected, I hope.
00:35:43But I guess there is -- I was just wondering if there was anyway that a film likesummertime orafrican queen would ever look dated.
00:35:50I can't imagine it would I can't see that it would.
00:35:52Because it just seems timeless and it seems right.
00:35:57Well, I think -- yes, and I think the type of story that we did then, is, uh, is different.
00:36:04I mean, we were doing sort of hero stories, weren't we -- and heroine stories?
00:36:10That wasn't exactly heroine, but it was the story of a woman.
00:36:14Now we're doing the deeply troubled sex life of most of us.
00:36:20And I find this a bit dull.
00:36:22Are there films you won't go to -- no, I have no sense of virtue.
00:36:27I'm just sick of whether somebody's impotent, or -- you know, I should think he would be impotent considering the life he's led.
00:36:35I think it's reasonable to think that at 40 he's impotent and has a problem.
00:36:41And I can't feel that his problem is terribly interesting to me, you know?
00:36:47I'm sure it's very interesting to him.
00:36:51If not obsessive.
00:36:52Well, he's been obsessed with the subject, so he's tired out.
00:36:56But let me go back a minute for one second.
00:36:58Were there colonies in hollywood when you went out there?
00:37:01I know there was an english colony.
00:37:04And then I heard that there was a russian colony.
00:37:07I don't know anything about it.
00:37:09I never went out.
00:37:10Never went out anywhere ever except to george cukor's house.
00:37:14I'm not sure that isn't why you survived.
00:37:16No, that's not true.
00:37:17I think hollywood was a wonderful place, so don't try to lure me into knocking it.
00:37:22No, 'cause it's -- it doesn't make any difference where it's done, it was a brilliant group of people.
00:37:28And they led a fascinating life, and they were dumb enough to turn down television.
00:37:33So, another group took the ball and ran in a certain direction, and the world changed.
00:37:39But suppose someone had said to you, "come on, kate, you gotta loosen up now.
00:37:42I know you gotta work tomorrow, but let's go out and get drunk and sniff a little cocaine, and that's what " I don't believe everybody's doing that in the first place.
00:37:50And certainly I wouldn't do it.
00:37:52'Cause I like to feel good and healthy.
00:37:54And I think that's a bore.
00:37:56And I've got plenty of energy without it.
00:37:59Cold sober, I find myself absolutely fascinating.
00:38:04[Laughter] you realize that an audience has trickled in here since we started talking.
00:38:15Off the street.
00:38:16Yeah, we're drawing 'em off the street.
00:38:18But you've destroyed a lot of myths for me tonight.
00:38:21There weren't lecherous old goats waiting for the fresh young girl?
00:38:26I never had a man make a pass at me in my whole life unless he was drunk.
00:38:30Then he would have thought better of it the next time, and I helped him home and departed.
00:38:36I cannot believe that.
00:38:38Never had a man make a pass at me.
00:38:39What about all those nasty producers who said, "well, come in, young lady -- no, no, no. never ever.
00:38:46Never ever. nonsense.
00:38:47I don't know why I say I can't believe that.
00:38:50Let me change that to I can believe that.
00:38:51Because -- not only because it implies that you're a liar -- now you can believe that nobody'd make a pass at me.
00:38:58Well, I know what you mean.
00:39:00You do trap a man in the things he said.
00:39:04Maybe that was my troubles.
00:39:06Maybe that's it, yes.
00:39:08You just blew your chances with me.
00:39:10I always hear that there were all those guys who chased the ladies around, and that was one of the things you had to brace yourself for when you got out there.
00:39:18No, that's nonsense.
00:39:19Well, they're safe today because nobody chases the ladies around, if you get what I mean.
00:39:26I do, what's -- what's happened? I don't know.
00:39:29.. yes, we're over populated.
00:39:32It has to be straightened out.
00:39:34What makes people turn out the way they do?
00:39:38The men get feminine and the women get masculine.
00:39:41And it has to do with the sheer numbers of people I would think so.
00:39:47From their parents, possibly?
00:39:49 I think the population problem.
00:39:51They always blame that on women, you know?
00:39:53If a young man has an overprotective mother -- everything is blamed on women anyway.
00:40:00But they're trying to put that right.
00:40:03And you hope they do.
00:40:07I think they will.
00:40:10We have to take a pause we will be right back after this pause.
00:40:14Stay with us.
00:40:15I feel I have to ask this.
00:40:17Everybody says that garbo had something that no one ever had before or since.
00:40:23I'm willing to believe that this is not true.
00:40:29No, this is true.
00:40:30Is it? yes, I think so.
00:40:32She had a real mystique and a real, real gift for movie acting.
00:40:39And what is it?
00:40:41If I were in a room with her, and the camera were there and she were here, and I could see her on the set ofcamille, would I see that in that room?
00:40:48Yes, I think you would.
00:40:50I think she was mysterious -- is mysterious.
00:40:54Have you met?
00:40:55Yes, yes, many times.
00:40:56She's charming and sweet and nice and funny, but she's -- she certainly photographically had something that nobody else had.
00:41:06I think that's what made her.
00:41:08You don't become that famous for no reason.
00:41:11Did you get the feeling that she got pleasure from her career, though? she seems not to.
00:41:15Yes, I think she did.
00:41:16I think people -- everybody has a different way of living.
00:41:19They have to, uh, some people have happy natures, some people have -- I have a happy nature so I have a good time, you know?
00:41:27You do. yes, I do.
00:41:29You ride, you play tennis, play golf, swim -- bicycle.
00:41:35You cook.
00:41:37Yeah. I work.
00:41:39You work. and I work.
00:41:40I clean the house and wash the dishes and do what everybody else does today.
00:41:44You know how to clean the sink and all of those things.
00:41:47And I enjoy it enormously.
00:41:50You know, but I have, uh, I'm a compulsive over-worker.
00:41:57It's a let-off to me, so I enjoy that.
00:41:59Someone said once that we have no way of knowing if garbo ever read a book.
00:42:04Have you read a book?
00:42:06Yes, I've read a few.
00:42:08I can read.
00:42:09Are you a compulsive reader?
00:42:12Am I a compulsive all-the-time reader?
00:42:15Yeah, I doubt if I've read anything on the current bestseller list, for example, and I just wonder if, um - no, I'm a funny reader.
00:42:22I like to read, like to read about people.
00:42:24I wouldn't say I was a brilliant creature, but I'm interested in people.
00:42:31But I'm physically a very active person.
00:42:35I get rid of a lot of energy that way.
00:42:36That's why I don't have to take the stuff very often or the stuff, you know, 'cause I have a lot of vitality.
00:42:42Do you mind if I reveal that there's no actual illicit drug over there at all, but something that keeps your lips from drying?
00:42:51Chapped lips.
00:42:53I didn't want the audience to worry.
00:42:56I don't think they would.
00:42:57When you were doing lion in winter, for example, would you read historical biographies of the character you played?
00:43:04Yes, I read everything about her that I possibly could read.
00:43:08'Cause I thought she was a fascinating character.
00:43:11And I thought he was, and I thought it was a wonderful relationship, and I enjoyed doing that picture very, very much with -- I hadn't worked for a number of years then.
00:43:21I hadn't worked for seven years.
00:43:23And, uh, I really enjoyed doing that picture with peter.
00:43:26He's a wonderful actor -- wonderful actor.
00:43:28Yes, he said he'd do anything for you.
00:43:30He was here one night.
00:43:32Oh, we just got on great.
00:43:33I hit him right in the jaw once, right in the jaw.
00:43:36 what had he done to you?
00:43:39We were sharing a makeup man, and he wasn't working, and I was working.
00:43:42And I sent for the makeup man.
00:43:43" he happened to be o'toole's makeup man.
00:43:47So I just, uh -- I was way down the basement of the monastery in provence, and, uh, finally I sent for him again, and he didn't come.
00:44:01So I walked upstairs and I got hysterical as I saw myself in a rage walking along.
00:44:07I lost my rage, and I opened the door of his dressing room and there he sat, and he turned around and I biffed him.
00:44:14You want me to show you?
00:44:16Sure. we're near the end.
00:44:17I biffed him that way, and then I biffed him that way.
00:44:20And I said, "the next time I send for the makeup man, " so I went back roaring with laughter.
00:44:26I really socked him. he was dumbfounded.
00:44:29It did him a lot of good.
00:44:31I does everybody good to be hit.
00:44:33So, so, I got down and in no time at all, peter came down with crutches.
00:44:41His leg all bound up, his head all bound up with bandages, came onto the set.
00:44:46 to make me feel guilty.
00:44:49And then you caused an accident with your niece the other day.
00:44:51You're sort of a dangerous person to know in some ways.
00:44:54I imagine. yeah.
00:44:55I'm overenthusiastic.
00:44:57Do you mind if I mention that your niece was riding a horse and you applauded?
00:45:01Scar the horse, and she shotp into their, turned a somersault, and feltn heback.
00:45:05She's all right, though. she didn't mind.
00:45:08It made her the center of -- she could show how well she behaved, not a tear.
00:45:14We'll be back after this message with katherine hepburn. stay with us.
00:45:18I'm back, talking to katherine hepburn, a promising actress who recently had a job with the american film theater.
00:45:26There's a legend about you that you can sleep when other people can't.
00:45:32What is the secret of that? clear conscience.
00:45:36[Laughter] well, for those of us for whom it's too late for that, what do you recommend?
00:45:44The people who watch the show particularly -- watch late night television -- are desperate.
00:45:52Well, yeah, many times.
00:45:55You're getting me for that thing I said earlier.
00:45:59But many times it's not the last thing they watch at night.
00:46:02They stay up and they say, "god, please get a man on " is there a secret?
00:46:09Do you lie in the same position?
00:46:11I always thought that would help, lie on your back.
00:46:14I just think I'm an old bore, and I just go to sleep.
00:46:17I lie down and I go to sleep.
00:46:18 I'm come on the program, I talk.
00:46:21I'm supposed to talk, I talk.
00:46:23I go to bed, I sleep.
00:46:25I have some food, I eat it.
00:46:26It doesn't seem very -- I'm uncomplicated.
00:46:28You're uncomplicated.
00:46:30Rather stupid, I would think, probably.
00:46:32You're not a joiner, obviously, and, um, in void of those cults and groups out in hollywood.
00:46:39IN NEW YORK IN THE '30s, There was that legendary group of wits, you know, benchley and thurber -- yes, they were just a little bit older than I am.
00:46:48I was their victim.
00:46:49You were a target rather than -- yes, I was a target.
00:46:52'Cause I was constantly making an ass of myself, so I fed them.
00:46:56Do you think you would have enjoyed them?
00:46:58The ones I knew I enjoyed very much.
00:47:00They were fascinating, but it was a different -- again, it was a different sort of lingo.
00:47:05Dd you know what I mean?
00:47:06It was a lingo just, sort of, maybe 10 years older than i.
00:47:11Just a different lingo.
00:47:13Just the way you're a different lingo.
00:47:15We talk okay, but we're really, fundamentally a different lingo.
00:47:19 I feel very in tune with you in some way.
00:47:21That's my business.
00:47:27Do you mean when you smile at me it's acting?
00:47:29Putting on the charm.
00:47:31[Laughter] well, all right, now I'm gonna ask you something really, really embarrassing.
00:47:41Do you remember me as an actor at all?
00:47:47Do I remember you as an actor?
00:47:51I've been told I should.
00:47:53Well, we were in a play together.
00:47:59Are you sure?
00:48:01Well, there's my answer.
00:48:02Did you say, "are you sure?" yes.
00:48:04Were at stratford connecticut together.
00:48:06I was a child.
00:48:07I was an apprentice. I was still in school.
00:48:09" I had a beard.
00:48:13You were not even on the stage when I was on, and I had one line in that play, and I was able to write home and tell everyone I was "playing" with katherine hepburn in the summer.
00:48:25Oh, dear. and what was the line?
00:48:28Oh, I knew you'd do that.
00:48:31"Gentlemen, my master antonio is at his house " and is that the way you said it?
00:48:39[Laughter] oh! that's unkind.
00:48:47Oh, that's brutal.
00:48:49That's unfair!
00:48:50I've never walked off on a guest.
00:48:52You should go.
00:48:53You just move then and I'll take over because I think -- you're right.
00:48:57You're right.
00:48:59And I'm sorry.
00:49:00You've got the property in montauk.
00:49:02You can live a happy life.
00:49:05That is how I said it, and, um -- I had to say a line like that once, and I got fired, too.
00:49:13Did they keep you or let you go?
00:49:14They kept me, possibly because you never saw my scene.
00:49:17Oh, dear.
00:49:18There were only two men onstage at the time.
00:49:22One night you fell down.
00:49:24We came running on.
00:49:25There was another scene I was behind you in a crowd, and they had cables.
00:49:30And you went wham! coming on.
00:49:33I don't know if you remember that.
00:49:35And your costumes had snaps here and it drove them into your arm.
00:49:39It was very painful and it bled.
00:49:40And you went right through that scene.
00:49:42I looked, I couldn't see a trace of pain on your face.
00:49:45And afterwards, you were really kinda badly mangled.
00:49:48Never be beaten by a snap.
00:49:50That's the motto of the theater.
00:49:52No, I don't -- I think when you're really concentrating, you don't feel anything like that at all.
00:49:59I truly do believe that.
00:50:01I think you just don't feel.
00:50:03That's why I think you can play when you're sick.
00:50:05Because it's a -- if you achieve -- pure concentration is like mesmerism, you know.
00:50:12You just, uh -- terrible things have happened to people on stage, they've gotten through it and come off and faint.
00:50:18Or die. or die.
00:50:21Or die, yes.
00:50:22You're looking into the wings.
00:50:23Well, I'm looking to see if there's a chair.
00:50:26A chair? for me to die in.
00:50:28Is that how you'd like to go -- in some very theatrical manner?
00:50:32No, no.
00:50:34In bed. die in bed.
00:50:36Go to sleep.
00:50:37Just go and not know that you went.
00:50:40That's right.
00:50:41Can I ask you if you think you go anywhere after you die?
00:50:44No, I don't think you go anywhere.
00:50:46I hope you just go -- just lie in the ground, happy, at rest at last.
00:50:52But "at rest" implies being conscious in some way.
00:50:56Don't have to rake anymore leaves.
00:50:58No, I just think it's just fine.
00:51:00You know, I think that would be fine.
00:51:03I don't feel that -- I never have felt the slightest interest in the next world.
00:51:10I think it's here, and I think anything good that you're gonna do, you should do for other people here, and not do anything to make yourself have a happy time in the next world, you know?
00:51:21That really goes back to the egyptian days when I was buried with all my jewels to show that I was rich and I'd like to stay rich.
00:51:29That effects the way you lead your life, though, that conviction.
00:51:33No, I don't believe in religion.
00:51:36I think religion -- I believe in christ, and I believe in the example of a perfect human being.
00:51:44That he certainly proved that if you can live for other people, away from yourself, you will be happy.
00:51:52And if you live for yourself, you will be unhappy.
00:51:56And you will then not be able to sleep or do anything else.
00:52:02And, uh, and I think that in so far as people live -- and I really believe this very passionately -- in so far as people do live with the other fellow in mind, they have to be happy.
00:52:18Because it raises you up, you know?
00:52:21A sort of golden rule.
00:52:22I think so. I really think so.
00:52:24And I think in so far as that can be observed.
00:52:26After all, we have no notion as to what the next world is, if there is one.
00:52:31So there's no point in that.
00:52:33But there's -- it's always been -- I hear a lot of people saying, "well, what's the -- I don't know the difference between good " I know totally for myself the difference between right and wrong.
00:52:44I know this because wrong makes me very uncomfortable and right makes me very happy.
00:52:50And I don't think it's so very difficult to know when you're doing the right thing and when you're doing the wrong thing.
00:52:56And I think each person, the right thing, the wrong thing varies.
00:53:00But committing a stinking act to someone else should make you unhappy.
00:53:07If it doesn't, you're diseased.
00:53:09And you certainly are miserable.
00:53:11Somebody said morality is self evident.
00:53:13Absolutely self-evident.
00:53:15And decent behavior in relation to our fellow man is, uh, uh, is the source of tremendous joy and tremendous lack of pain.
00:53:26I mean, you can rise above.
00:53:28With the spirit, you can rise above anything if you're totally dedicated.
00:53:34As christ was to someone else, to other people, to the notion of other people uh, then he could rise above all pain and all sorts of things. and I believe that.
00:53:47I do believe that entirely.
00:53:49And I think many, many people practice it.
00:53:51I think we are in the habit today of picturing and hearing about nothing but the dismal failures.
00:53:57But I think many, many people -- many women with children, you know, young children who have a tremendous problem live the lives of absolute saints.
00:54:09People do the most extraordinary things for each other.
00:54:13People have done the most extraordinary things for me.
00:54:16" and I think, "oh, god, not I wonderful.
00:54:19" so I think there is a way of, um, you know, I think man can get better and better and better.
00:54:30That's why I'm interested in elevation and not sort of settling for the dismal sort of washout.
00:54:38I find this a bore.
00:54:39The sameness of things.
00:54:41No, I mean the person who obeys now rules, doesn't do a god damned thing for anybody else, refuses to do anything for anybody else.
00:54:48Thinks entirely about themselves, and wastes it, and spends it, and tosses it.
00:54:52I can't be terribly interested in them.
00:54:57We'll be back after this message with katherine hepburn. stay with us.
00:55:01Can you tell a friend, if he's lousy in a film or in a play?
00:55:05How do you handle that?
00:55:06Oh, I think it's a great bore to tell someone " I hate people who come back and don't tell me I'm wonderful.
00:55:13What the hell can I do about it if I've done it?
00:55:16If I've done it.
00:55:18You meant to be good.
00:55:19Well, I mean, obviously I was trying as hard as I could.
00:55:22I think it's terribly -- you know, I think it's the biggest bore in the world.
00:55:27Have you noticed that I haven't asked you any of the things that, um, like "do you " " " you mean any of the absurd things that you usually ask people?
00:55:43Thanks a lot.
00:55:45Well, I assume that -- it was hard for me.
00:55:48I had you terrified.
00:55:50I did make an exception.
00:55:52Thank you very much.
00:55:53I wanna ask you something -- can I mention bette davis' name one more time?
00:55:57Yes, you may.
00:55:58I asked her once if she could detect a parallel between how her private life was going and how her work was going.
00:56:05In an actor's life, does the one affect the other adversely or favorably?
00:56:12Yeah, well, I think -- no, usually favorably.
00:56:15The worse your private life, the pleasanter, uh, it is to go into a land -- the never never land.
00:56:26And then if you're very, very happy, the never never land -- so most actors, I think, fundamentally can use the miseries.
00:56:33I think that's why I'm so happy.
00:56:35Some people can't use the miseries, you know?
00:56:38I think any kind of an artist generally can use the sorrows and the miseries for creative effect.
00:56:46Terrible thing to say 'cause it's not very, you know, flattering to their characters, but it is true.
00:56:52But it makes you lucky to be an artist, doesn't it because other people don't have a place to use -- oh, I think you're lucky to be an artist.
00:56:59Well-paid, especially this kind.
00:57:01If you can call it an artist.
00:57:03Forgive me, are those teeth your own?
00:57:06They are some of the -- I should say the most famous teeth in the world.
00:57:10There's a crooked bottom one, but it doesn't show so much.
00:57:13It's lucky they're my own 'cause I show them all.
00:57:16I saw a picture of walter houston and me roaring with laughter and you could see the wisdom teeth.
00:57:22They're my own, too.
00:57:23You have our wisdom teeth? four of them.
00:57:26What good are they?
00:57:26Well, they're just waiting to hold everything in some day.
00:57:31Terrible thought.
00:57:34What is your size, by the way?
00:57:36Do you mind revealing that?
00:57:38What actors are you taller than?
00:57:41Uh, I'm 5'7" and a little plus.
00:57:45That makes you taller than robert taylor.
00:57:49Taller than yesterday.
00:57:52Not taller than cary grant.
00:57:54No, the ladies -- I was tall.
00:57:56And I was got rid of several times 'cause I was just tall.
00:58:00And now, I'm short.
00:58:02So, when I play with the young girls and I want to dominate them, I have to have them walk on the downside of a hill, or off a step or something 'cause I like to be taller than they are.
00:58:14Were you taller than tracy?
00:58:16No, no, no ,no. I wasn't.
00:58:18Spencer was about 5'11".
00:58:20But I -- mind you, when you put on the high heels, there you go. you have an advantage.
00:58:25And he slumped and I stood up straight.
00:58:27What else did they say was wrong with you in those days?
00:58:31Practically everything.
00:58:33Voice. well, voice.
00:58:36Tallulah bankhead said, "kate has the most terrible voice I've ever heard.
00:58:40You go into a theater and you nearly die for the first five minutes.
00:58:44And when you come out, if anybody else talks, " so, somebody else said I had a voice that sounded like nickels dropping into a slot.
00:58:55So, it's loud and clear.
00:58:58But like anything, if you live long enough, as I have, you get an affection for something that irritates you 'cause you miss it when it's gone.
00:59:08" can you disguise it if you had to?
00:59:12Can you call up a friend and be someone else and fool 'em?
00:59:14" and if I don't want to talk to them, " what can they say?
00:59:22They can't say, "oh, you're not," 'cause I have two of them.
00:59:25Do you sisters sound like you? would I know?
00:59:28Yes, yes.
00:59:29One sounds better, and one sounds worse.
00:59:31Well, by the way, did you or did you not -- they'll never know which one.
00:59:37 you covered everything, then.
00:59:40Did you or did you not do commercials for herring on the radio once?
00:59:45Never did a commercial.
00:59:46And if I had done a commercial, I wouldn't have done one for herring.
00:59:53I know there was an imitation of you one time.
00:59:56Yes, there was.
00:59:58But not very good imitations.
01:00:00Nobody's ever done you right on the nose.
01:00:03I don't know who did that.
01:00:04No, not really.
01:00:06"My name is eva lovelace.
01:00:07' " that's what they imitate.
01:00:15Yeah, 90 years ago.
01:00:17And the old calla lilies line.
01:00:18"Calla lilies are in bloom again.
01:00:20Such a strange flower.
01:00:22I carried them on my wedding day, and now I place them here " that was the line.
01:00:29While you're here, can I ask you one other thing?
01:00:31During the blacklisting period in hollywood, I find that period entirely incomprehensible.
01:00:37I read as much as I can about it.
01:00:39There's a recent book by a mister kanfer on the subject.
01:00:43And I just wonder -- two things about it are never satisfactorily explained.
01:00:48Why people put up with the brutal rotten treatment that they got from the committee and all on that side -- oh, I think they had to 'cause I think it was popular.
01:00:56Anything that's popular, just the way it's popular to be anti-nixon, it was popular to be terrified of the communists.
01:01:04And the papers sort of took the sides.
01:01:10There were a lot of very reactionary papers, and they'd give a headline to the effect, "hepburn a communist" was a favorite cry.
01:01:17Your name didn't come up.
01:01:20Oh, yes, yes.
01:01:21My name came up because I did a speech about censorship in movies.
01:01:29I've read that speech somewhere.
01:01:32I was against it. well, I did two things.
01:01:35That was in the gilmore stadium.
01:01:38And i, like a silly, thought of wearing a white dress and then I thought they'd call me the dove of peace.
01:01:45So I wore a pink dress, and played right in their hands.
01:01:49And they picked that up.
01:01:51And then they were very cagey about me for a while, and then tried to force me to sign all sorts of things.
01:01:58And I wouldn't.
01:02:00But it was very difficult.
01:02:01I mean, it was fine with me because if i didn't work, I still had money enough to live.
01:02:06And, but it was very, very tough on people who had families whom they had to support, and they, really, literally, could not get a job.
01:02:15Some were literally killed by it.
01:02:17Absolutely killed by it.
01:02:19Can I ask you how mr. tracy felt on that subject?
01:02:22" and he didn't go in for politics.
01:02:30An actor.
01:02:32That's right.
01:02:35There's something about you.
01:02:36I know that as long as I've been in this game, people have said, "i don't suppose there's any chance " " 'cause I know years ago, I worked in talk shows, and you, at one point said, I have a quick answer for that.
01:02:56And, it's unbelievable to me, I guess, really that we're sitting here.
01:03:01I have a feeling I'll wake up and they'll say, "you gotta get to work.
01:03:05And by the way, hepburn isn't gonna show " I don't know what that is.
01:03:10I've fallen in love with you at least seven times that I can count in the past hour or so.
01:03:22Before I come apart, I think we should take a message.
01:03:26We'll be back.
01:03:28I'm so grateful to you for being here, and I'm looking forward to the american film theater project.
01:03:34A delicate balance, edward albee is your play.
01:03:37And I guess we mentioned earlier -- paul scoffield. paul scoffield to be in that.
01:03:40And they also haveolivier andthe three sisters andrhinoceros, andhomecoming, and full-length the iceman cometh, which was a real -- yeah, yeah, four hours.
01:03:49Well, the time has come to say goodbye to you.
01:03:51I can't think of anything I'd less rather say to you.
01:03:53I have never enjoyed anything more than this in my life.
01:03:56You know something funny.
01:03:59I've enjoyed it, too.
01:04:02Have you really? yep.
01:04:04I have, I didn't know whether I would or not, but I have.
01:04:08Well, I'm glad, and I'm glad for the handful of people who go to sit in this studio and see you do this unexpectedly the way you did.
01:04:16I know your feelings about privacy.
01:04:18I realize the rarity of this event, and I'm damned proud to be able to say that I know you.
01:04:25And thank you for being so generous and so wonderful.
01:04:28Well, you been -- you can't do it alone, so thank you very much.
01:04:31We'll see you.
01:04:34Good night.
01:04:35Captioning provided by turner studios captioning made possible byturner entertainment department of education [no audio] hello, herbert!
01:12:48Hello, herbert.
01:12:49 why, you're a sorry sight, my friend.
01:12:52Well, we got awful cold on that boat.
01:12:54We wallowed around for 3 days while the captain tried to dodge nazis.
01:12:57Well, come along. I got a cab waiting.
01:13:01Where to, children-- the nottingham hotel?
01:13:02 we've written to reserve the flat we had last year.
01:13:05We've made up our minds we're going to have a home for a few months.
01:13:09It takes more than a war to upset nora's homing instinct.
01:13:11 you're a brave girl to have a baby at a time like this.
01:13:15If nora had been with custer at little bighorn, everything would have been homey, up to and including the last stand.
01:13:21What was the number of that flat?
01:13:23338 Littletown square.
01:13:25 such gay wallpaper in the bedroom.
01:13:29They say it's important what a baby first sees.
01:13:32338 Littletown square?
01:13:33But that entire square was bombed out last week.