RADIO CALL — TAPE #683 EXCERPT
Q: Mark Russell Bell
M: Matt Drudge
J: John, caller from Alabama
M: It is Drudge on Sunday night at (gives number twice) on this Oscars night 2001 and, you know, sort of diverting from the regular format. You want me to give you all my good — trying to compete with this? You want me to get out here and give you some — a prime Drudge reporting in the middle of this? ("THIS") This night of the 60 share or the 50 share? Impossible. And now that I know Whoopi Goldberg isn't on there stinking it up, it's even a bigger audience I predict. Even though none of these films — I mean we're sitting here — we're sitting on pins and needles. Is it "Gladiator"? Is it "Traffic"? Is it ("TI") "Crouching"? The experience of tonight we will never forget. Until tomorrow. I'm trying to think what won last year. ("WE'RE SITTING IN A") What won last year? Oh — "American Beauty" won last year. So you didn't know until I said it, right? Well whatever wins this year, I assure you midweek I'll check with you and you won't know. It's just that kind of year and that's okay. It's the end of an era. We're closing out the American century and this is sort of the last one. Michael Douglas with his face. That's sort of the last face you'll see of the American century. Where it's going nobody knows. ("I") "Town and Country" is the frontrunner for next year — looking very, very provocative. Warren Beatty hasn't been this good since "Reds." Or is it — what's that comic strip thing he did where he tested every single frame allegedly? "Dick Tracy"? Hasn't been this hot — "Town and Country" is going to sweep the Oscars next year. That's my prediction. Sweep 'em. Even Dino De Laurentiis cannot compete with "Town and Country." Opening soon. Mark my words. Let's go to Alabama. John, line four, you're on the air with Drudge.
J: Yeah? Hello?
M: Good evening.
J: Yes, out in Birmingham. I kind of agree with you — what you say about Hollywood. I've lived down here for three years working in the entertainment industry and it's like seeing "The Wizard of Oz." You know? You watch "The Wizard of" — you want to go there and then you get there and it's like, "Well some guy behind the curtain."
J: That's what it is. That's exactly what it is. Like —
M: Well, you know, thanks for ruining our night. I was caught up here in the whole fantasy of the evening.
J: Okay. I'm sorry.
M: (laughs) Oh you mean these are real people? ("YEAH") You mean these are real, pathetic people? I thought they were heroes. I thought Russell Crowe was a hero.
J: I've never seen a Russell Crowe movie and when I heard this about the — I hear how like he plays this badass and all. Well, somebody's going to kidnap you — be one of those badasses . . .
M: Well . . . I smell a publicity stunt on that. You know, there's such little news right now? You can just sneeze and they'll put it on the cover of the National Enquirer or the Star and the Globe. You know, they're all owned by the same person. So you can get in the papers real easy. I'm going to do that. I'm going to start saying the FBI wants — is doing a protective order on Drudge. They're threatening to kidnap him. It probably will work.
J: I think —
M: And who are these people they're showing in this audience? There's Goldie. Goldie.
J: Is she the next big thing? There's always a chance to come back, you know?
M: "Town and Country" — mark my words. Hollywood . . . Thank you, Birmingham. . . . (several calls later) . . . Is 'Best Director' or 'Best Foreign Film' "Crouching"? Still can't tell. They haven't given us enough clues. A little bit for "Traffic." A little bit for "Gladiator." Now a little bit for Lee. Boy, that's going to be quite an ice storm over at the Dreamworks SKG lot if "Crouching" wins after all that money they spent on the "Gladiator" ads in Variety. And Harvey Weinstein won't be sending any boxes of 'chocolat' over there . . . Look at this kung-fu movie. I know it's the "Titanic" of Asia. I know. I know. I've read it all too. I tried. I tried going in the theatre. I couldn't quite do it. I better watch out. Adam's going to call me in for it. I tried to — I even went — drove by the — oh, here's Ben Affleck. They're really rolling out the star power now. They're really rolling it out. Is this the first time he's ever appeared without his sidekick Robin? Matt Damon? (BEEP) . . . Los Angeles, you're on the air with Drudge.
Q: Hi, Matt. I must say I do feel sorry for some of those people celebrating the Oscars tonight. And it is quite fitting that a film set in ancient Rome is being celebrated because I see parallels between contemporary society. I'm not watching television myself —
M: Well we're beyond Rome, sir. We're beyond it.
Q: Well —
M: Didn't you see Bjork get dressed up as a duck? Q: No. I personally have chosen not to watch television at all and be a victim of that whole mind control system.
M: (small laugh)
Q: But —
M: You've got radio on. We can show you that way.
Q: Well I'm reminded a few weeks ago when you had a caller talk about the parallels in ancient Egypt with the genetics —
Q: —going on and now what's happening. And now, of course, back in Rome they celebrated golden idols. And what are those big golden things out (in front) of the so-called 'Shrine' Auditorium in Hollyweird? I mean it's all happening again.
M: Well it's the 73rd time that they've passed this gold to each other. I know — I know, I'm with you on some of that. You know when the scaffolding fell outside of the Shrine — a funny term "shrine" — I put up the Oscar that hadn't been put up yet. It was sort of on its back. A dramatic thing because, yes, this whole thing — the music they use, the sort of operatic, sort of angels, no (or "NO"), chanting and these gold statues twirling and people barely keeping their clothes on, people dressing up like ducks, yeah it is kind of weird. I agree with you.
Q: The superficiality is what really disturbs me. And I can feel sympathetic because I, myself, had worked in publicity so I know what kind of — I mean they're so enchanted with their wealth and their success and their fame —
M: Here's an example. 'J-lo' — Jennifer Lopez is on now and she looks like she's wearing about $20 million worth of Harry (Winston) diamonds. J-lo, love don't cost a thing. You taught us that, didn't you? Yeah, you're right, they're very caught up in their materialism, who's wearing what and who's —(small laugh) —
Q: And it — what's sad is that when they come to the eventual realization as they must — they'll realize, "Well what have I been doing wasting all my time with all these problems in the world? I've just been ("ON A") on a big ego trip when there are people — 25,000 people are starving (to death) every day. And this is how I spend my money? Is that really a good choice?" Instead of who we pretend to be in celluloid and on TV, who are we really? Where does our money go?
M: Well Mark, I'm going to let you go. Thanks for the call. We're sitting here (line disconnected) — now Bob Dylan is preaching to us —Bob Dylan, ladies and gentlemen. From "The Wonder Boys," "Things Have Changed." The only thing I've seen changed is there's no Whoopi here tonight. And maybe, just maybe there's a breakthrough. Maybe the theme of the evening is that people are getting sick of maintaining airs that Hollywood is well. I mean Bjork showing up as a duck may be a turning point in pop culture. It could be, you know? ("IT IS") Small baby steps. And Steve Martin in his bravo performance — just bravo sitting there mocking them. And they're stuck in their seats. Yeah, Tom Hanks, you've got that flop sweat going. This ain't going to be your year for "Cast Away," is it? This ain't going to — you're feeling it, right? They just ("CLEARLY") cut to somebody in the audience. They're tearing up because Bob Dylan is telling them to be poor. Let's ream them on something. Bringing them a flashback to when they were all rebels and now they're all conformists. All the rebels — look at them now. They're all conformists. They've all become the establishment. And Bob Dylan pouring himself up there — used to be anti, used to be the rebel. Now they've all cashed in. Where's the gold? . . .
Q: (speaking into tape recorder) I wish I could've mentioned the fact also that movies definitely are more hype than reality. So, of course, in my metaphorical story that helps others evolve, how fitting it was that I was involved in hype which is the major foundation for these dreams that are shared with so many different people through technology.
M: . . . out on the coast. We gather all for a common love — publicity as they flash Julia Roberts's face. How many covers of magazines last week, Julia? How many of them were Warner Brothers — Time Warner? All of them? . . . .