I’ve been coming home from work and making food and putting on old Dick Cavett interviews with Orson Welles and Marlon Brando, and on and on. Man, they’re incredible.

Anyway I found one with Marlon Brando and Connie Chung from 1989, and apparently it was Brando’s first TV interview in 16 years. Whoa.

At one point near the end of the interview he lays down THE REAL STUFF:

CHUNG: You said that in the last nine years you’ve been searching for what you really want to do.


CHUNG: Have you decided?

BRANDO: Have you?

CHUNG: Did you ever want to start a national theater or something like that?

BRANDO: There is no—we have no basis for culture in this country. There is no culture in this country.

CHUNG: Why do you say that?

BRANDO: Well there’s almost no culture any place in the world. Who are the present great artists, painters, thinkers, philosophers? Where are they? Do you realize that in Greece for a 150 years we had Sophocles, Plato—why go down the list.

CHUNG: Couldn’t you bring it to the American stage?

BRANDO: That’s an enormous presumption. I mean people throw the word “artist” around like a . . . a football. There are no artists. There are only people like you and me who make money.