30 Pro Tips For a Successful Celebrity Interview

This has been a week full of weird interviews. From Charlie Sheen's monstrous call-in segments with Dan Patrick (during which he compared himself to Superman and revealed that crack is perfectly fine if it can be managed socially) to Justin Bieber's comments on abortion to January Jones' awkward hometown bashing session with Jon Stewart -- these publicized conversations have been so uncomfortable that we here at Movieline HQ have no choice but to help. Herewith, 30 pro tips that will improve any question-and-answer session, whether it be television, radio or print. As always, dear readers, feel free to contribute your own advice in the comments section. These celebrities need all the help they can get!


DO NOT show up drunk or high for an interview.

DO NOT insult interviewers to their face or make jokes about how press junkets are torture...while at a press junket that will promote the movie that will make you millions of dollars. Just ask Russell Crowe and Christian Bale.

DO NOT talk excessively about how wonderful your cast members are and how they became "family" over the course of production. This is annoying.

DO provide details, just like in an actual job interview! If you think your co-star was hilarious, give an example of his/her hilarity on-set. If a big-name film star sexually harassed you on the casting couch, share some details.

DO NOT be afraid to show your vulnerability. Talk about that teenage crush that broke your heart or the actor you stalked for months -- it will make you seem normal (or weirder than us!), and your fans will appreciate your honesty.

DO NOT grope or sexually harass your interviewer.

DO NOT attempt to kick your interviewer in the head wearing platform shoes.

DO NOT bring up all of the charity work you do. This is an interview turn-off.

If you have a documented history of alcohol abuse, drug use, theft, run-ins with the police and jail time, DO NOT try to deny said personal problems in interviews (cough, Lindsay Lohan, cough) unless you want to insult the few fans you have left.

DO NOT engage your interviewer in a ridiculous debate about depression and science before declaring yourself an expert on the history of psychiatry, as demonstrated beautifully by Tom Cruise below.

DO NOT jump on the furniture.

DO NOT insult your employers on national television. (Here's looking at you, Katherine Heigl.)

DO NOT take off your shirt and simulate live birth on a local news anchor's desk.

DO NOT talk about how much you love food or hate exercise if you are a beautiful actress or model whose BMI is less than 18, as demonstrated by nearly every Hollywood actress or model.

If you're a 16-year-old male pop star, DO NOT offer your opinion on abortion.

If your most significant contribution to society is a shaggy, prepubescent haircut -- no one cares about your thoughts on health care. Spare us.

DO NOT pretend to be something you're not -- like a sexy domestic goddess during a print interview by baking an apple pie. And then gifting said apple pie, that was baked mid-interview, to another guy the next night on national television.

DO NOT be afraid to poke fun at your image. Refer to any Bruce Willis or Bill Murray segment on the Late Show with David Letterman ever.

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  • Jen Yamato says:

    Point of contention: In the case of Quentin Tarantino vs. Jan Wahl (AKA The Hat Lady of San Francisco), QT was well within his rights pwning her on live TV.
    As a Bay Area native who grew up having to listen to her on the radio/TV, I can attest that she is not, as her website claims, "Your favorite movie critic."
    But all the other Pro Tips? Gold. I hope the Biebs is reading this rightnow.

  • stolidog says:

    Do not fart.