Diane Keaton: "Then Again"

Transcript for: 
Diane Keaton: "Then Again"

MS. DIANE REHM

11:06:53
Thanks for joining us I'm Diane Rehm. Diane Keaton once said, there was no love of my life except my mother. The award-winning actress has starred in some of the most memorable movies ever made, among them "The Godfather" trilogy and "Annie Hall."

MS. DIANE REHM

11:07:18
Now in a new memoir she writes about her life off screen and the bond with her mother that defines them both. The book is titled "Then Again" and Diane Keaton joins me in the studio. Throughout the hour we'll take your calls, 800-433-8850. Send us your email to drshow@wamu.org and join us on Facebook or send us a tweet. Diane Keaton, how wonderful to meet you.

MS. DIANE KEATON

11:08:01
Thank you, thank you, Diane.

REHM

11:08:03
Yes.

KEATON

11:08:05
Another Diane.

REHM

11:08:07
We are two Dianes here in the studio together. I want to tell people how you're dressed.

KEATON

11:08:13
Oh, please do.

REHM

11:08:14
You have a darling -- what kind of hat do you call that?

KEATON

11:08:19
I would call this a man's bolero hat...

REHM

11:08:22
A man's bolero hat.

KEATON

11:08:25
...with a high crown, though...

REHM

11:08:27
Yeah.

KEATON

11:08:27
...so I can push it down.

REHM

11:08:27
Okay.

KEATON

11:08:28
And hide my face, Diane.

REHM

11:08:29
And hide your face.

KEATON

11:08:31
I'm not stupid.

REHM

11:08:31
We have been talking about this before we've gone on the air, about the fact that I have said, I am never doing anything to my face. You had, at one point, said you would prefer not to do anything to your face.

KEATON

11:08:53
I would prefer it, but, you know, I'm always afraid when I make these pronouncements. It's sort of like when I was young, I said, I'm never, ever going to have intercourse before marriage. That would have been a big loss for me and so I don't want to like, you know, and I don't think that it's right to go to headshrinkers. I mean, some of the...

REHM

11:09:12
Yeah, yeah.

KEATON

11:09:12
...stupidest things came out of my mouth. I think that, yeah, I don't want to just make a law here, but I would prefer to age as gracefully as I can with the face I am given.

REHM

11:09:27
Exactly, exactly. I think, with your face, you can afford to be an example to the world of what a beautiful woman's face looks like as it ages.

KEATON

11:09:45
Maybe, maybe, okay, I like what you're saying.

REHM

11:09:49
I want to talk about the cover of your book because this is straight out of "Annie Hall."

KEATON

11:09:54
Oh, yes.

REHM

11:09:54
Your mom is on the back cover. That is such a gorgeous picture.

KEATON

11:10:02
Isn't she beautiful?

REHM

11:10:03
She really is. She's absolutely beautiful.

KEATON

11:10:06
She's handsome.

REHM

11:10:07
Yeah.

KEATON

11:10:07
Don't you think?

REHM

11:10:08
I understand what you're saying.

KEATON

11:10:10
Patrician...

REHM

11:10:10
Yeah.

KEATON

11:10:10
...great straight nose, beautiful face actually, beautiful, wide jaw, but of course, she didn't feel she was beautiful.

REHM

11:10:18
She didn't?

KEATON

11:10:19
No, not at all, no.

REHM

11:10:22
Tell me about your relationship with her growing up.

KEATON

11:10:26
Well, of course, I was just devoted to my mother because she was devoted to me. My mother was by far the most active, intense, devoted listener that I've ever come across in my life.

KEATON

11:10:40
I used to love to spend time with my mother just sitting across from her at the kitchen counter and telling her about my problems. I had many problems and she would always sit there and she would also look and go, oh Diane, it's going to be alright. She never made a judgment call. She just allowed me to go on and on and was always, as I said, actively interested, so she was this fabulous person to listen to and she had a great sense of humor.

KEATON

11:11:07
So you know she would laugh and she would encourage me and this is true with my siblings as well, Randy, Robin and Dorrie. So this was a great gift and I don't think people really understand how important listening is. You know my problem in life has always been that I like to express myself.

KEATON

11:11:25
I don't like to listen as much as I like to express myself, but I'm learning and I do think it's a great gift because I think it makes for a more enriched life, but it's hard sometimes.

REHM

11:11:38
It's hard.

KEATON

11:11:39
You want to be the person who finds an audience and is seeking out attention and my mother really did encourage all of us to tell her what we thought so she was really kind of like my first psychiatrist.

REHM

11:11:54
What about your father?

KEATON

11:11:56
My father was very different, Jack Hall. He was always -- he was a civil engineer. He had a very interesting background. His mother, Mary Hall, drove from Nebraska, brought him to California and Mary was more man than woman, that's the way we described Mary. She was a fine Irish matriarch and there was a difference between Mary and Grammy Keaton. There were these two Grammys.

KEATON

11:12:21
My mother's mother was Grammy Keaton and of course Grammy Hall was my father, Jack Hall's mother. And you would describe my Grammy Hall as like I told you more man than woman and Grammy Keaton's face was filled with faith. We're talking about the '30s, 1930 right? And Grammy Keaton would always make us angel food cake and Grammy Hall would always make us, when she did make a cake, devil's food cake.

KEATON

11:12:44
And Grammy Keaton was someone who devoutly believed in Heaven and while Grammy Hall was a Catholic she felt that Heaven was a lot of bunk so my father, you know, had this very unique mother who had been abandoned by his father and she never told anybody. So we didn't know who this man was and she didn't allow anybody to ask questions and so my father of course complied and never asked anything about his father. We sometimes wondered if he was a bastard, that's what you called them in those days, if you didn't have. Maybe she hadn't married this man, Chester Hall.

KEATON

11:13:20
My father died never knowing anything about his father including his first name. His first name was Chester. It turns out that Chester was a barber who had been killed in a labor dispute, murdered. So these stories just were astonishing.

REHM

11:13:37
Wow, wow.

KEATON

11:13:37
So this Mary Hall was some character. So my father wasn't really a man to discuss his feelings or things like that. He was very, he always encouraged success. He always asked me to ask a lot of questions, that's what he did and I always... oh we're moving on.

REHM

11:13:57
No, I just want...

KEATON

11:13:59
I want to keep going on. I'm rambling and rambling on.

REHM

11:14:02
No, I just, I wanted to ask you...

KEATON

11:14:02
Yeah?

REHM

11:14:05
...whether...

KEATON

11:14:06
Sure.

REHM

11:14:07
...your father was a listener.

KEATON

11:14:09
Oh my father was, no, not, no, no, no, no. No one could be like my mother as a listener. She was graceful. She was encouraging and comfortable and warm. My father was a debater. My father and I used to debate together when I got older and this became a kind of a way that I got to know him and enjoy him. He was also a man who loved nature so we were, you know, we were a family of the '50s.

KEATON

11:14:34
We were a very average American family in Southern California in the '50s and my father's heart went to the ocean and we would camp out at Huntington Beach and Doheny Beach. And we were constantly driving and camping and my dad would always sit out and look at the ocean. And that was the love of his life. He was a surfer. He was a skindiver. He was a man of the water.

REHM

11:15:00
Sounds as though he was more internal...

KEATON

11:15:04
Yes.

REHM

11:15:04
...than your mother opening herself to what was coming...

KEATON

11:15:06
To us, to the children, yes, and I think that their marriage was a classic marriage of the '50s, her role was to be of course the housekeeper in life and in fact in my book I talk about my mother who had these other ambitions that of course she didn't really fulfill, but when she was young, she entered the Mrs. America Contest at the local level and this was at Mrs. Highland Park. She was trying to become Mrs. Highland Park and I remember I was nine years old and there was this stage in this movie theater. It was the first I'd been in a movie theater by myself at night. It was very exciting.

KEATON

11:15:45
I was sitting there and I was looking and my mother was onstage with four other women and suddenly I hear her name. And so then they put a crown on her head and it was like the most insane image ever. I will never forget it. And I'm going wait. I don't understand. What's going on?

REHM

11:16:01
What's happening?

KEATON

11:16:02
What's my mother doing up there? What is this? And then the curtain parted. I'll never forget this, this curtain parted and this cornucopia of gifts from like. She had a wardrobe from Ivers Department Store and a set of Samsonite luggage and a Philco washer and dryer. And I just was like, wait a minute this is like, this is one of those milestone memories. You know it's like that was the moment I knew that I would have to. I would have to go on stage...

REHM

11:16:31
You wanted to be onstage?

KEATON

11:16:32
Of course it had to be me and I also was very worried that what would happen to my mother if she. You know she went on to become Mrs. Los Angeles too by the way and she was crowned by Art Linkletter, the famous Art Linkletter at The Ambassador Hotel. So we started to get very nervous in the family. Were we going to lose our mother? Like was she going to become another Bess Meyerson or something horrible like that? And I wouldn't have my, you know afternoon snacks with her and where would she go? And why would she have...

REHM

11:17:01
So what happened?

KEATON

11:17:02
She became -- she made it to the finalists of Mrs. California, but I think she felt the pressure from kind of all of us that we didn't want her to win Mrs. America or go off and leave us and become a spokesperson or, I don't know, write a column for McCall's magazine. I don't know.

REHM

11:17:24
So instead, she turned her enormous talent to doing for you all and writing in these 85 journals you found.

KEATON

11:17:39
Yes, yes, she did. I remember seeing my mother kind of like, when there was a moment and there were not many moments, just trying to find a place to go and be by herself for half an hour. And there, obviously, she had a whole secret world, an internal world that we knew nothing about. I think we instinctively felt it, all of us but we didn't have very much curiosity because our need was so overpowering for her. You know we didn't really want to know what it was like in her, what her dreams were basically, you know what were Dorothy's dreams.

KEATON

11:18:21
She was always enabling mine, but I didn't really want to know hers.

REHM

11:18:25
Diane Keaton and her new memoir with her as "Annie Hall" on the front and her beautiful mother, Dorothy Hall on the back, we'll be right back.

DIANE KEATON AS ANNIE

11:20:04
Hi, hi, hi.

WOODY ALLEN AS ALVY

11:20:07
Hi, oh, hi, hi.

ANNIE

11:20:12
Well, bye.

ALVY

11:20:19
You -- you play very well.

ANNIE

11:20:20
Oh, yeah? So do you. Oh, God, what a -- what a dumb thing to say, right. I mean, you said you play well and then right away I have to say you play well. Oh, oh God, Annie. Well, oh well, la-de-da, la-de-da, la-la, yeah.

ALVY

11:20:39
You -- you want a lift?

ANNIE

11:20:41
Oh, why? You got a car?

ALVY

11:20:45
No. I'm -- I was gonna take a cab.

ANNIE

11:20:48
Oh, no. I have a car.

ALVY

11:20:51
You have a car? So I don't understand, if you have a car so then -- then why -- why'd you say do you have a car, like you wanted a lift?

ANNIE

11:21:01
I don't -- I don't -- oh jeez, I don't know. I wasn't -- it's -- I got this VW out there. What a jerk, yeah. Would you like a lift?

ALVY

11:21:14
Sure. Which way you going?

ANNIE

11:21:17
Me? Downtown.

ALVY

11:21:18
I'm -- I'm -- I'm going uptown.

ANNIE

11:21:20
Oh, well, you know, I'm going uptown too.

ALVY

11:21:22
Wait a minute, you just said you were going downtown.

ANNIE

11:21:24
Yeah, well, but I mean --

ALVY

11:21:26
So sorry.

ANNIE

11:21:26
-- I can go uptown, too. I live uptown, but what the hell. I mean, it'd be nice having company, you know. I mean, I hate driving alone.

ALVY

11:21:32
Yeah.

REHM

11:21:34
Diane Keaton, what's it like for you listening to that?

KEATON

11:21:37
Well, it's very different than seeing it because when you see it -- and I have seen clips obviously of this scene. I get caught up in the visual. I'm more visual than verbal. And to hear it is so astonishing how Woody captured an essence of me. It's almost as if I'm listening to somebody in real life actually talking and actually -- like reality TV. It's just -- it's amazing what he wrote. It's absolutely astonishing how he captured the sound and the nuance and the kind of weird rhythm that I have when I speak, and also the kind of missed seconds. And it's just -- it's pretty -- it's his writing. It's just his writing.

REHM

11:22:21
He wrote that for you.

KEATON

11:22:23
Yeah, he did write that for me. Yes, he did. And you can tell 'cause it sure sounds like me, doesn't it?

REHM

11:22:28
Well, and the other aspect of that is exactly as you say, it sounds like you.

KEATON

11:22:35
Yeah.

REHM

11:22:36
So he wrote it with you in mind. How did you and he first meet?

KEATON

11:22:44
Oh, it was at an audition for "Play it Again, Sam" the play. I was in "Hair" at the time and I knew a person who knew the director who got me the audition. It was -- I mean -- and so I met him on stage at the Broadhurst Theater. And I auditioned and I got the part. Isn't that amazing?

REHM

11:23:05
It's amazing.

KEATON

11:23:06
Yeah, I know.

REHM

11:23:08
And then he wrote this for you.

KEATON

11:23:11
Yes, he did. But as you know, as you -- if you look at what he's -- you know, this -- Woody's work throughout the years he really does have an amazing capacity to capture other people's voices, particularly women's. It's really quite a gift. Because it's almost like there was a tape recorder taping a conversation as opposed to having written it down. But he wrote that down. He created that scene. I never met him like that. Was nothing like that at all.

REHM

11:23:39
I was going to ask whether in fact that dialogue was simply on the spot...

KEATON

11:23:46
No.

REHM

11:23:46
...because it is your voice.

KEATON

11:23:50
I know.

REHM

11:23:51
Totally your voice.

KEATON

11:23:52
No, this is his gift. He's a (unintelligible) ...

REHM

11:23:54
What was -- what was your relationship with Woody Allen at the time?

KEATON

11:24:00
At the time, we were friends. We had been romantic and -- we'd been romantically linked before, but when -- by the time "Annie Hall" rolled around, we were friends. We were no longer an item, as they say.

REHM

11:24:13
Do you see him now?

KEATON

11:24:14
Oh, yeah, I do.

REHM

11:24:15
You do.

KEATON

11:24:16
Oh, every time I go to New York City I see him.

REHM

11:24:18
How did you feel when his marriage -- his relationship with Mia Farrow broke up?

KEATON

11:24:27
I'm always sad when relationships break up because I know that there's a lot of pain attached to any kind of a breakup. Particularly one involving, you know, a family. So it was sad and I was very upset for all parties like it always is.

REHM

11:24:46
Yeah, it's tough. Do you think you'll ever make another movie with him?

KEATON

11:24:53
With Woody? I don’t know. I went back in "Radio Days" and I was -- he asked me to sing a song and that was completely -- that was my idea of heaven. I always wanted to be a singer. So I don't know. I went back, you know, and "Manhattan Murder Mystery" as well. And that was extremely fun because he had changed his style. What he -- at that point he was doing those handheld movies. I don't know if you remember those. "Husbands and Wives" was one.

KEATON

11:25:21
So this was just like, oh what are we doing? There's no marks, there's -- it's just free. And I remember he would go and he would look at a scene and he would say, this is just way too long. He'd go into another room and then he'd cut the scene in half, rewrite it and boom, there you are again. And we're out there shooting that thing. And it was so much fun, it was so exciting. And it was, you know, like no one else. Always his movies, he's always had this tendency to downplay the role of the artist, the actors, artists.

KEATON

11:25:50
You know, I'd go up to him, I'd say, well what should I be doing in this scene? And he would say, just do it. Don't talk to me about it.

REHM

11:25:55
Just do it.

KEATON

11:25:56
Just do the scene and don't worry about it and stop standing on the mark so perfectly. Just be yourself.

KEATON

11:26:36
Oh my God, I would -- I wanted to be a singer so bad.

REHM

11:26:39
Did you?

KEATON

11:26:39
But obviously I've wanted to be many things. Have you noticed?

REHM

11:26:41
Yeah, yeah.

KEATON

11:26:43
There's a lot of -- I -- you know, I wanted to be a designer. Now I've got this product at Bed Bath and Beyond. I've wanted -- I'm a jack of all trades master of none.

REHM

11:26:51
And you're --

KEATON

11:26:51
And Chico's, of course. There I am.

REHM

11:26:52
And Chico's -- on the cover of Chico's. The singing.

KEATON

11:26:57
Yeah, the singing is still -- oh, I love music and I love singing. And in fact, you know, I don't ever, ever play music around the house. I don't ever want to hear it because it's too much. It is the most extraordinary -- I can't live with music because it just takes you over. It's the most powerful of all the arts to me. Music -- don't you feel that way? You listen to music and it just -- oh, it takes your whole soul. Don’t you feel that way?

REHM

11:27:29
I love to be in my car.

KEATON

11:27:32
Oh yeah, alone, right.

REHM

11:27:33
Alone….

KEATON

11:27:34
That I understand, yeah.

REHM

11:27:35
...with the music...

KEATON

11:27:36
Yes, yeah.

REHM

11:27:37
...surrounding me.

KEATON

11:27:37
Exactly.

REHM

11:27:38
It's just fabulous.

KEATON

11:27:39
And I love to sing. I still sing. I mean, you know, I love this -- you know, I love all music too. I don't know if you know Kanye West and Jay-Z. This new album of theirs, oh my God, they're -- and I sing with me and I'm thinking they probably think this very strange woman, this woman, you know, age 65...

REHM

11:28:00
I love it.

KEATON

11:28:00
...I jog and sing to Jay-Z…

REHM

11:28:02
I love it, I love it.

KEATON

11:28:03
...and Kanye West. They're brilliant.

REHM

11:28:05
All right. I want to go back for a moment to your mother because you found these 85 journals.

KEATON

11:28:18
Well, they were lying around the house.

REHM

11:28:19
Lying around.

KEATON

11:28:20
Yes, but she had them in one room in particular but she was always working on a journal. And I remember that I came across a journal in the '70s. This was -- this may be before or after "Annie Hall" and I remember that I was using her dark room. And I saw -- you know, she was a big -- we were all into collage. Collage was kind of the metaphor for our family. You know, just taking things, visual things, throwing them together, mixing them up and then coming up with something new. And what were you looking at and it was really a very exciting thing.

KEATON

11:28:50
That was one thing that mother was just so -- I don't know -- she taught us how to see. She taught us how to appreciate beauty. I remember her taking me to a museum when I was a girl. And we were looking at statues, Greek statues or Roman statues. And the lion -- you know how it is, like the lion would be missing its nose or the woman didn't have an arm. And my mother would say, Diane, look at this. Just look at this, Diane. Isn't that beautiful? And I'd say, why? Why? They don't have -- where's the nose? And mom would say, no don't you see? Look at how amazing that is in itself. Look at that. And it's just -- that's what she did for all of us. All of us are visual and she taught us how to see in a way...

REHM

11:29:32
But once you got into these journals and began to really...

KEATON

11:29:38
Oh, well, that's a different part of her life (unintelligible) ...

REHM

11:29:38
...see your mother.

KEATON

11:29:41
Yeah.

REHM

11:29:43
What was the gut reaction on your part?

KEATON

11:29:49
Well, at the first time, that time when I actually looked through one of them I saw an item about, oh she was working at Hunter's bookstore and she was making $1.39 an hour and she was kind of excited by this. $1.39 an hour? I'm going, really. And then she -- and then I turned the pages and I found this other excerpt that said, for you readers in the future, watch out. You know, you friggin' bastard, Jack. And I just went, that's it. I closed it. I never opened...

REHM

11:30:22
Because she was talking about your dad.

KEATON

11:30:24
Her real feelings and she was talking about my father. And it was too much for me to address her needs, her feelings, her aspirations for herself. And so I never -- I never read any of her journals.

REHM

11:30:40
Did you say anything to her?

KEATON

11:30:44
No, no. No. I pretended like I never seen it.

REHM

11:30:48
So then when you went back for the writing of this book and really took in those journals, what was your gut reaction?

KEATON

11:31:03
My gut reaction was that it was like I was being transported back to then. You know, that's what I titled it, "Then Again." But it was then again where I was learning about my mother and how complicated and how her feelings were sometimes euphoric but other times very insecure and unhappy and unfulfilled that she didn't really have the -- I remember one time I read -- while I was reading this for the book that she had -- I read a whole journal that it was her intention to write her own memoir. And she had titled it "Memories." And it was just really about her early girl days. And it's in the book and I used a lot of that.

KEATON

11:31:55
And you see that she really did want to write this -- and she wrote me a letter. I have the letter. At the time it must've been the '80s that I -- she had written that and she wrote me a letter about wanting to write a memoir. And, you know, I had an agent at the time. I could've helped her out. She might've been able to have written her own memoir. And I did nothing for her. And I didn't even remember the letter, 'cause it was convenient for me not to remember that she might've needed something.

KEATON

11:32:28
So just to tell you how I feel, I feel obviously a lot of regret that I was a person who insisted on remaining a daughter and not growing up in relation to my mother. I really wish that I -- you know, why couldn't she have written a memoir? She did -- she has the material. But it was kinda like she was asking me to be interested in her interests and I just didn't take her up on it.

REHM

11:32:59
And you're listening to "The Diane Rehm Show." Diane Keaton is here in the studio. Her new memoir just published by Random House is titled "Then Again." All right. We're going to open the phones and go first to Long Island, N.Y. Good morning, Scott.

SCOTT

11:33:23
Hi, good morning, Diane and Diane.

REHM

11:33:26
Thanks.

SCOTT

11:33:28
My mother's also Diane so this may be the most Dianes I've been talking to in a day.

REHM

11:33:30
Oh, my gosh.

SCOTT

11:33:34
My comment is, Diane Keaton, you're really a part of my family history probably without even knowing it. My twin sisters are 26 years old and they were Baby Elizabeth in "Baby Boom."

KEATON

11:33:49
No. Oh, no. No. How are they? Oh, they were beautiful babies. Oh my God.

SCOTT

11:33:56
Well, they're beautiful girls.

KEATON

11:33:57
Are they? Oh, that is fabulous. That is hilarious.

SCOTT

11:34:03
Yeah, so you come up in conversation all the time at family gatherings. I haven't -- I was five years old at the time so I have some memory of it. But they're doing great and we talk about you all the time.

KEATON

11:34:15
Are they actresses?

SCOTT

11:34:17
No. They're both teachers.

KEATON

11:34:20
They're teachers.

REHM

11:34:20
They're teachers.

KEATON

11:34:21
That's perfect.

REHM

11:34:22
Scott, I'm glad you called.

KEATON

11:34:24
Thank you, Scott.

DIANE KEATON AS JC WIATT

11:34:25
I was very excited about this offer, but, you know, I don't think I really thought about what it meant. And you see, I'm not the "Tiger Lady" anymore. I mean, I have a crib in my office and there's a mobile over my desk and I really like that. I mean, Fritz, do you remember that night when you told me about the things that I was gonna have to give up and the sacrifices that I was gonna have to make? Well, I don't wanna make those sacrifices. And the bottom line is, nobody should have to.

DIANE KEATON AS JC WIATT

11:34:59
No. I don't think this is gonna work out. And I'll be honest with you, I think I'm doing pretty good on my own. To be quite frank, if the Food Chain could put Country Baby on every supermarket shelf in America, so can I. I'm sorry. I just think the rat race is gonna have to survive with one less rat.

REHM

11:35:24
And that was, of course, from "Baby Boom."

KEATON

11:35:26
"Baby Boom," yeah.

REHM

11:35:28
Tell us about your own children.

KEATON

11:35:32
Oh, all right. Well, as you know I adopted my daughter when I was 50. And Dexter is now 15 years old. And, in fact, I'm flying home tomorrow to California. And on Saturday we have a big swim meet. And Dexter is going to be swimming the 200 back, the 200 breast. And we've got a big weekend ahead of us. So Dexter is a swimmer. She's part of a swim club called Team Santa Monica.

KEATON

11:36:03
And Duke is also a swimmer. That's my son and Duke is five years younger than Dexter. And he's beginning to really enjoy tennis and he's very fast. Duke is fast. So I think tennis is probably going to be the game for Duke because -- so these sports have really kind of become -- you know, my family, we were not sports oriented really. I was -- in fact, growing up, look, you know, I thought it was disgusting for a woman to play sports in all events because I was very interested in being Twiggy. You understand what I mean.

REHM

11:36:37
I understand.

KEATON

11:36:38
Or Audrey Hepburn.

REHM

11:36:39
Of course.

KEATON

11:36:39
I was interested in passion of course, you know. So now that I'm a sports mom, I can't believe where my life has -- I mean, my life has gone from one extreme to another. And it's so much fun for me. You have no idea. I so enjoy it.

REHM

11:36:54
What prompted you at age 50...

KEATON

11:36:57
Fifty, yeah. Well, as you know, I kinda failed in my relationships. I didn't quite -- I didn't quite manage to find a relationship that had any real lasting value. And my father -- when I was about 45, my father -- you know, he was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. And I'd been living my life basically, as we now know, pretty much involved with myself and my romances and my career. And I remember I was driving him home and he was -- should I not say it?

REHM

11:37:35
No, I want you to finish it.

KEATON

11:37:37
Diane is kind of an orchestrating person.

REHM

11:37:38
Yeah.

KEATON

11:37:39
You are. You're fabulous.

REHM

11:37:41
And at this point, we'll hold that story until we come back.

REHM

11:40:04
It's seems that just as we're having to break Diane Keaton is in the middle of a wonderful story. Finish the story about your dad.

KEATON

11:40:16
So he'd been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer and he had been put on this experimental program and he failed. And he was sent home to, you know, it's the quality of life not the quantity, which is, of course, ridiculous, but, in any event, I was driving him home from the hospital -- UCLA Medical Center. And we were just driving along and I didn't know what to say to my father. I don't know, it felt awkward.

KEATON

11:40:39
And then, suddenly, he said to me, you know, Diane, I always hated my job. And I'm going -- yeah, and I wish that I had spent more time with you kids. I wish that I had traveled more. I wish I'd taken more risks. And that was it, when he said risks, for some reason, that really resonated so powerfully for me because I thought about all the risks that I hadn't taken -- certainly revolving around the word, intimacy.

KEATON

11:41:13
And so he really was -- he really was the person who helped me come to realize that I had to make a decision about what my life was going to be. And I wanted to make a change and I knew that -- I knew that I was going to adopt a baby based on that moment with my father.

REHM

11:41:38
Did you adopt the two at the same time?

KEATON

11:41:41
Oh, no, no.

REHM

11:41:42
No.

KEATON

11:41:43
Dexter was first and then five years later it was Duke.

REHM

11:41:46
Mm-hmm.

KEATON

11:41:46
So, I was 55 when I adopted Duke -- 55 years old, yeah, because I felt that Dexter needed to have somebody to experience what she would be going through with me. When she's 30 I'll be 80. I didn't want her to go through that alone. And, also, I thought she needed -- she needed to experience what it is to have a sibling because, for me, my siblings have meant so much in my life now. We've come -- we've become even closer.

REHM

11:42:16
You not only saw your father go through brain cancer...

KEATON

11:42:21
Mm-hmm.

REHM

11:42:22
...you saw your mother go through difficulty at the end.

KEATON

11:42:25
Yeah, problems with the brain. Yes, my mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 1993 and then, again, later more -- it was sort of, like, she might have this problem and she got this letter, but then it was the diagnosis became official. And I remember she told Robin, my sister, she said just please be sure to remind me to kill myself before I get too far gone. I want to commit suicide. She didn't, of course, thank God, but she -- in a way she felt like she didn't want to be a burden to anybody.

REHM

11:43:06
I understand. Lots of people are asking about the movie, "Reds."

JOHN J HOOKER AS SENATOR OVERMAN

11:43:15
Do you believe in God?

DIANE KEATON AS LOUISE BRYANT

11:43:18
I beg your pardon.

OVERMAN

11:43:20
It's a simple question, Ms. Bryant. Now, do you want me to repeat it?

BRYANT

11:43:23
I'm sorry. For a moment, I thought you asked me if I believed there's a God.

OVERMAN

11:43:26
That is precisely what I asked you.

BRYANT

11:43:29
I see. Well, I have no way of knowing.

OVERMAN

11:43:32
Are you a Christian?

BRYANT

11:43:34
I was christened in the Catholic Church.

OVERMAN

11:43:37
Well, are you Christian now?

BRYANT

11:43:38
I suppose I am.

OVERMAN

11:43:41
Do you believe in our Lord Jesus Christ?

BRYANT

11:43:43
I believe in the teachings of Christ. Am I being tried for witchcraft?

OVERMAN

11:43:48
Ms. Bryant, tell me, are there no decent God-fearing Christians among the Bolsheviks?

BRYANT

11:43:53
Does one have to be God-fearing and Christian to be decent? Senator, the Bolsheviks believe that it's religion, particularly Christianity, that's kept the Russian people back for so many centuries.

OVERMAN

11:44:03
Ms. Bryant...

BRYANT

11:44:03
If any of you had ever been to Russia and seen the peasants, you might think they had a point. On the subject of decency, Senator, the Bolsheviks took power with the slogan, An End To The War. Within six months, they made good their promise to the Russian people. Now the present president of the United States of America went to this country in 1916 on a no-war ticket, within six months, you'd taken us into the war and 115,000 young Americans didn't come back. If that's how decent God-fearing Christians behave, give me atheists anytime.

BRYANT

11:44:32
By the way, Senator Overman, in Russia, women have the vote, which is more than you can say for this country.

OVERMAN

11:44:37
Ms. Bryant, do you advocate a Soviet government for this country?

BRYANT

11:44:42
No. In this country, I don't think it would work.

REHM

11:44:45
Wow.

KEATON

11:44:46
That is a wow. I've never heard that clip before. Do you know separate from actually seeing the movie where you just single out that clip Warren did a lot of work on that movie. Warren basically was so consumed by that film it took him a year to actually film the entire movie and, I think, it was, well, the most important professional experience in his life.

REHM

11:45:15
One person wanted to know how you see this movie and what it was like for you acting with Warren. How much of the anger and love expressed in that movie was real?

KEATON

11:45:37
Well, I didn't really take very well to being directed by Warren. I was not a very good sport at it. Warren was so impassioned and Warren liked to do many, many takes. Every single set up there was at least 35 takes and this included your medium shot, your master shot and your close up. So, you know, you -- and then I got a little bit confused about who I was because what happens is when you do so many takes, you kind of get lost in what you're doing.

KEATON

11:46:13
At the same time, though, I will say this, in a way it worked very well for the movie. I was so rattled and I think that it brought out a lot of really -- some very powerful scenes. And so, in a way, I always think that I was never really responsible or the author of my own performance because I feel like my performance in "Reds" was a response to Warren. Do you understand what I mean?

REHM

11:46:38
Of course.

KEATON

11:46:39
You know, yeah.

REHM

11:46:40
Of course.

KEATON

11:46:41
Yeah. So I -- but I really -- I love that movie. I love -- and I'm proud of that performance because it was very -- like I said before, it was a very emotional, raw performance.

REHM

11:46:54
And, of course, we are talking about Warren Beatty. Did you have a wonderful relationship?

KEATON

11:47:05
Oh, my God, I mean, he was a dream come true, of course. I mean it was -- I remember that I had this -- when he was first -- I don't -- I'll never know why. I remember Warren looking in my face and just -- he made me feel like I was suddenly perfect, you know, like that lopsided nose of mine, it changed. And I could just do about anything and I remember I was terrified to fly, which I still am, Diane. I'm terrified to fly. I've got to get over it. Tomorrow I'm flying to California. I can't take it.

KEATON

11:47:34
But, anyway, I remember one time I was so afraid and Warren took me to the airport and he got on board the flight with me. This is a long time ago when you could do that. And he held my hand and he sat down next to me and he flew all the way to New York with me and then he also -- I got off the plane, he kissed me goodbye and flew back to L.A. I mean that's just so completely romantic.

KEATON

11:47:59
And I think, you know, the thing about "Reds" was that there was something I didn't like about Louise Bryant. I felt like she was using John Reed to get ahead because she was so insecure and she wanted to be an artist and she wanted to be every bit as good as he was and I had a problem with liking her while I was playing her. And the one scene that changed my feelings about Louise Bryant was this scene at the end, or close to the end, where she hasn't seen him for a long time and she's been looking for him and they meet at the train station.

KEATON

11:48:29
And I remember, at the time; I don't know if you remember -- and people won't probably remember, but there was -- at that time in life there was this new instrument called the Walkman. And the Walkman changed the world of music. And what you did is you put in, you know, a player and you played the Walkman in your ear. And I was playing it when I was about to shoot that. By the way, that -- that scene took 64 takes...

REHM

11:48:51
Oh.

KEATON

11:48:51
...before I got it right.

REHM

11:48:52
Oh.

KEATON

11:48:52
Listen to me. So, anyway, I got Bob Dylan playing, you know pressing on pressing on and this was his song from an album of his called "Saved," anything not to hear Warren's direction. This is kind of the nice person I was. So there I'm going and then suddenly I hear action and I throw the -- I throw the Walkman off my ear and I start walking down that train. And suddenly, zoom, it was like love came rushing in and it was Warren and it was his face approaching mine and it was love and so after that I kind of forgave Louise Bryant for being imperfect. And so I always see that movie as an imperfect love story set against this huge epic background.

REHM

11:49:31
To Wheaton, Md. and Lauren, good morning.

LAUREN

11:49:37
Thank you so much for taking my call.

REHM

11:49:39
Certainly.

LAUREN

11:49:39
I'm a fan of both of you Dianes.

REHM

11:49:42
Thank you.

LAUREN

11:49:43
But my one question was for Diane Keaton. I've seen all of your movies and I just think they're all fabulous, but "Looking for Mr. Goodbar" was so dramatic, dark and violent I wondered how difficult that may have been for you to make.

KEATON

11:49:59
That's a really interesting question because I don't really hear about "Looking for Mr. Goodbar." I rarely -- people don't talk about it. I remember my father thought -- and he was not happy.

REHM

11:50:09
He was not happy.

KEATON

11:50:11
No, he was not happy. He couldn't stand the way I had to die in that movie, but I, of course, at the time, thought, oh, this is fabulous. This is a great part for an actress. I'm an actress and I can play "Annie Hall" and "Looking for Mr. Goodbar" in the same year. They were both made the same year.

REHM

11:50:28
Wow. I hadn't recalled that.

KEATON

11:50:32
Yeah, but the one thing I liked about "Looking for Mr. Goodbar" was that it was very physical. It was a very physical movie and I can get lost in that. And I felt very comfortable, oddly enough, in those scenes.

REHM

11:50:49
How did you react to your father's negative reaction to it?

KEATON

11:50:56
Oh, I totally understood it. I mean, I -- why wouldn't he feel -- I'm glad he felt that way. He's my father. That's his job is to care about his daughter.

REHM

11:51:05
I remember interviewing the author of that book. I'll never...

KEATON

11:51:10
Judith Rossner, yeah.

REHM

11:51:11
...forget reading it. All right, to Winston-Salem, N.C., good morning, Robert.

ROBERT

11:51:20
Good morning. I just really enjoyed listening to the show this morning. You know, I was really interested, Diane Keaton, about your relationship with your mother because I know you -- in the book you mentioned about her influence on, I think, as a child, even the clothing you wore...

KEATON

11:51:37
Yes.

ROBERT

11:51:38
...and things of this nature. And it sounded -- and it made me think of my mother. When I think of mothers and relationships -- how much they influence their children -- and it was really, you know, in many ways her being, in some ways, it kind of, like, maybe even a frustrated or potentially an artist. And that she found her influence indirectly through you because when I think of you I think of a person who really influenced fashion for women. I was hearing Diane mention what you're wearing today and I'm wondering if there won't be women thinking about that and maybe looking again -- you're eternally beautiful and thank you very much.

KEATON

11:52:17
Oh, my God.

REHM

11:52:18
Isn't that lovely?

KEATON

11:52:20
Yes, too good for me.

REHM

11:52:22
No, no. And for those of you who are Chico's fans, Diane Keaton is on the cover and it's just a wonderful outfit. It's got a turtleneck. She's got a black turtleneck on. She's got a cap on half over her forehead. You can only see one eye and she's got great jewelry and you're listening to "The Diane Rehm Show."

JACK NICHOLSON AS HARRY SANBORN

11:53:00
Have you always been like this or do I bring it out in you?

DIANE KEATON AS ERICA BARRY

11:53:03
Just, you know...

SANBORN

11:53:07
I don't think I've ever had this affect on a woman before.

BARRY

11:53:09
And what affect do you think you're having on me?

SANBORN

11:53:11
I don't quite recognize it. That's how I know I've never had it before. So you don't sleep?

BARRY

11:53:19
I only need about four hours a night.

SANBORN

11:53:21
Me, too. I never slept eight hours in my life.

BARRY

11:53:24
Me, either. I wish I could. Do you want me to shut these? The sun comes in pretty strong in the morning.

SANBORN

11:53:30
Sure.

BARRY

11:53:31
So Harry, who are you talking to at this hour?

SANBORN

11:53:34
A friend in L.A. It's only 10 o'clock on the coast.

BARRY

11:53:37
And that's not past her bedtime?

SANBORN

11:53:39
So you don't get more mellow as the hours pass.

BARRY

11:53:43
Goodnight, Harry.

SANBORN

11:53:44
Can I ask one other thing? What's with the turtlenecks? It's the middle of summer.

BARRY

11:53:51
Now, seriously, why do you care what I wear?

SANBORN

11:53:54
Just curious.

BARRY

11:53:55
I like them. I've always liked them and I'm just a turtleneck kinda gal.

SANBORN

11:54:00
You never get hot?

BARRY

11:54:03
No.

SANBORN

11:54:05
Never?

BARRY

11:54:06
Not lately.

KEATON

11:54:09
How about his voice?

REHM

11:54:11
His voice.

KEATON

11:54:12
Isn't that one of the all time great voices?

REHM

11:54:13
Yeah, it really is. And I gather for you...

KEATON

11:54:16
Yeah.

REHM

11:54:16
...he's one of the all time special men.

KEATON

11:54:20
Oh, my, certainly. There's no question about it. Jack is one of the all time special men. I think every woman who's ever known Jack would say that. And I think he's known a few. Yeah -- no, Jack is -- that was the most exciting -- that was really, in a way, my favorite film because it came so late in life this opportunity to be in a romantic comedy again, to be loved by two men, one the appropriate age, one much younger. I mean, it was like a fantasy come true. Are you kidding? I mean I'll never forget it.

REHM

11:54:48
And you won the Academy Award for it.

KEATON

11:54:50
No, I didn't.

REHM

11:54:51
Not for that.

KEATON

11:54:52
No, I did not.

REHM

11:54:53
For "Annie Hall."

KEATON

11:54:54
For "Annie Hall" I won the Academy Award, but I did not win it for -- but I was nominated and it was just a thrill. He was a thrill.

REHM

11:55:00
It was a fabulous movie.

KEATON

11:55:02
Oh, that's -- that Nancy Myers, another writer. I've been really fortunate. I've had some great writer/directors. I really have. I mean Warren, too. Warren, Woody, Nancy.

REHM

11:55:12
Do you still remain in contact with Jack Nicholson?

KEATON

11:55:17
I do, I do. Sometimes I'll go up to his house and have lunch with him. And, you know, I always want to bring a tape recorder. I always want to -- I always to just -- I want to -- if I could -- I tell you, there's a book in just listening to his stories -- talk about amazing, but he won't let me. He's not going to...

REHM

11:55:34
Why not?

KEATON

11:55:35
I don't know. I'm going to approach him again. You think I got a chance? I'll try.

REHM

11:55:40
Just on tape.

KEATON

11:55:41
Yeah -- no, just -- it would be -- you have no idea. He's by far the most -- it's almost -- he tells -- his mind is absolutely off the charts in terms of how he views the world, how he sees it, what's interesting to him. He's brilliant. He's just -- I wish I could -- I tell you, Diane, do you think -- maybe I could try again.

REHM

11:56:05
Maybe he's listening now.

KEATON

11:56:07
Well, let's hope so.

REHM

11:56:09
What's next for you?

KEATON

11:56:11
Well, what's next for me is I have two movies in the can that are going to be coming out next year.

REHM

11:56:16
Tell me about them.

KEATON

11:56:18
One is called, "A Darling Companion." It's a Larry Kasdan movie. And the other is something with Robert De Niro. And this has been a very good year for me to work with my contemporaries. Like, not only with Robert De Niro in this last film that I did called, "The Wedding," so was Robin Williams. These are two men I don't really know and I had the opportunity to get -- and Susan Sarandon, another person that I didn't know.

KEATON

11:56:44
And all my contemporaries I feel like I'm beginning to know them. You know, we all live in these kind of separate fiefdoms and so it's so wonderful to really get to know, you know, people that I grew up with in the sense of what we did together, you know, in the movies.

REHM

11:56:59
And I'm so happy that women of your age, women of Susan Sarandon's age are still...

KEATON

11:57:09
Oh, working. Yeah, we are.

REHM

11:57:09
...performing there on the screen. Diane Keaton's new book a memoir; it's called, "Then Again." What a pleasure to talk with you.

KEATON

11:57:20
Thank you. Thank you, Diane.

REHM

11:57:21
Thank you.

KEATON

11:57:22
Thank you.

REHM

11:57:22
Thanks for listening all. I'm Diane Rehm.
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