Clint Eastwood Says He'd 'Say Something Else' If He Could Have RNC Re-Do

Eastwood RNC Obama

Making his first press appearance since that headline-grabbing Republican National Convention speech, Clint Eastwood laughed off his rambling, off-the-cuff missive to an invisible Obama. “It didn’t get the response I wanted,” joked the 82 year-old actor and filmmaker at a press conference for his upcoming baseball flick Trouble With The Curve, “because I was hoping they’d nominate me.”

Eastwood’s been around the block long enough in the film (and politics) game to acquit himself well with charming self-deprecation. But as the line of questioning briefly veered from his turn as an aging MLB scout to his now-infamous rambling RNC appearance (which he discussed with hometown paper The Carmel Pine Cone the other week), audible groans seemed to come from the direction of the publicists in the room.

Unperturbed, Eastwood explained what he’d been trying to convey when he improvised an exchange with an empty chair on the RNC stage: “My only message was [that] I wanted people to take the idolizing factor out of every contestant out there. Just look at the work, look at the background, and then make a judgment on that. I was just trying to say that, and did it in kind of a roundabout way which took a lot more time, I suppose, than they would have liked.”

A journalist asked if Eastwood would give the same speech if he could go back and do it all over again.

“I’d probably say something else,” Eastwood admitted, “but I’d try to get the same message across so that people don’t have to kiss up to politicians. No matter what party they’re in, you should evaluate their work and make your judgments accordingly. That’s the way to do it in life and every other subject, but sometimes in America we get gaga, we look at the wrong values.”

Then again, the former Mayor of Carmel, CA did make up his speech up on the spot just minutes before taking the stage. It might be hard not to do things differently. “I thought of that five seconds before we started,” he smiled. “You walk there [in front of] an audience of ten thousand people who are extremely enthusiastic and your mind goes blank, anyway. So I’d say something else.”

Stay tuned for more on Trouble With The Curve, in theaters September 21.

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