Never Say Die: 21 highlights from Josh Brolin's terrific,'Goonies'-heavy Reddit AMA
Though he was ostensibly promoting his role in the upcoming Robert Rodriguez sequel "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For," Josh Brolin's Reddit AMA on Thursday was delightfully all over the map, with topics ranging from "The Goonies" ("I've never had more fun on a movie") to his disastrous "Thrashin'" audition ("an 18 wheeler ran over it") to the insanity of working with Paul Thomas Anderson ("It felt like swimming in a Ralph Steadman drawing") to that horrible moment on the set of "American Gangster" with Russell Crowe ("I went back to my trailer waiting to be fired"). But mostly he talked about "The Goonies," and god love him for it.
Check out the 21 best moments from the spirited, candid and wildly entertaining Q&A below.
1. His favorite superheroes are the Hulk, Thor and...Richie Rich?
@Judomonkeykyle asks: Hi Josh, are you a comic book fan? Who is your favorite superhero/supervillan?
@Josh_Brolin answers: Thor and Hulk.
Richie Rich, which I am ashamed to admit. Richie Rich, Hulk, and Thor (I had a thing for blonds?)
2. Tommy Lee Jones is even grittier than you imagined.
@lmanders32 asks: Tell me which is grittier: Tommy Lee Jones' glare, or a literal bucket of grits?
@Josh_Brolin answers: Glare. Hands down.
3. He totally bombed his "Thrashin'" audition.
@judomonkeykyle asks: How much training did you have to do for Thrashin’? Did you already know how to skateboard?
@Josh_Brolin answered: I did. On the audition, part of the audition process was me having to skateboard outside while they watched me from across the street, second floor window. I hit a pebble, my skateboard went out into the street, and an 18 wheeler ran over it. The only reason I got the part was because the Goonies poster was up at the time. But yes I got the part.
4. He was a very, very pretentious teenager.
@I_am_solipsism asks: What's your craziest on-set story?
@Josh_Brolin answers: My craziest on-set story comes from during the Goonies, when I came up to Spielberg and said that I wanted to climb the walls of the tunnels and that it represented my mother's womb, for some odd reason. I was reading Stanislawski at the time and Spielberg's response was "Why don't you just act."
5. He has a lot of great "Goonies" stories.
@GrandMasterT asks: "The Goonies" is the all time best adventure kid's movie for my generation. Do you have a funny or interesting story from making that movie?
@Josh_Brolin answers: They didn't show us the - actually, I do! They didn't show us the ship that was being built, which would now be CGI I'm sure, so this was long enough ago that everything was practical (which made things much more fun & fantastical) - so it was on a stage, the stage was a massive pool with a practical 110 foot boat built in it. And they backed us up into the stage, into the water, had the camera set up so that we could have an "organic" reaction, put us underwater, I came up out of the water, turned around, we all came up out of the water, I turned around and said "Holy shit!" which ruined the whole take. And the surprise. So we had to resort to acting in the end.
6. He giggled as much at the name "One-Eyed Willie" as you did.
@trios13: Did you guys giggle everytime someone said "one eye Willy"? I never realized it was a euphemism until I went back and watched it in my teens! I've heard this story before...Why would "holy shit" ruin the take? Shit was said at other times in the movie.
@Josh_Brolin: My first day at work, half the day was ruined because I giggled so much. My dad didn't often bring me to the set, being an actor himself, so my infancy as an actor was wracked with a lot of giggles and nervousness.
7. He really, really loves "The Goonies."
@8_Wolf 182 asks: Hi Josh! Thanks for this AMA! Two questions: A. Being “The Goonies” your first movie, does it have a special place in your heart? If yes, more because of being the first or for the “adventure type of film and success it had?
@Josh_Brolin answers: I've never had more fun on a movie than I did on the Goonies. I thought that was how it was going to be for the rest of my career. And even though there have been massive fluctuations in the past 30 years, I still hold that as my greatest experience.
8. George W. Bush actually watched "W" - and Bill Clinton showed it to him?!?!
@GrandMasterT asks: What did George W think of your impersonation of him?
@Josh_Brolin answers: Oliver Stone saw Clinton at a art exhibit in China, where Oliver was selling some of his art. They started talking about W, Clinton (who's very close friends with W) loaned him his DVD, Oliver found out, and when Oliver asked Clinton how W liked it, his response was "Funny, but kind of sad."
9. He's on the fence about a "Goonies" sequel - but maintains that it's "possible."
@GrandMasterT asks: Is there a possibility of a sequel to "The Goonies"?
@Josh_Brolin answers (after joking, "We just wrapped"): There's always a possibility. Seriously, no teasing. About every 5 years it comes up. I've never read a script. It seems that recently in the last year, there's been more talk of it than usual from the likes of Corey Feldman and Richard Donner. But that's as far as it's gone for me. I don't know how I feel about a sequel, given that I love the original movie so much.
10. To reiterate: He loooooves "The Goonies."
@SensesAndSadness asks: My girlfriend hasn't seen goonies. What's wrong with her?
@Josh_Brolin answers: I'm concerned for her well-being. ...PM me an address, and I will send her a personalized DVD. Would she watch it then?
11. He was legitimately starstruck by John Malkovich.
@thisonehereone asks: Can you tell us about a time you got star struck?
@Josh_Brolin answers: John Malkovich! Who I asked to do Jonah Hex after I got to know him through the Coen brothers. And we went out for Ethan's 50th Birthday party to a german restaurant in New York, and it was the most star-struck I've ever been. I saw him in Burn This onstage, which was a turning point in my love of acting. Realizing how far you could go with a character.
12. He had a totally understandable reaction when seeing Javier Bardem's "No Country" haircut for the first time.
@wallowls asks: Hi Josh! Thanks for taking questions with us!
Honestly, what was your first reaction when you saw Javier's haircut on the set of No Country for Old Men?
@Josh_Brolin answers: His haircut? Hilarious. I laughed, I did. It was a Coen idea. And any idea that the Coens ever have is always absurdly hilarious.
13. "Never say die" is a mantra he still lives by.
@masterdebator88 asks: Have you ever said Die? Does saying Die, immediately get you booted from being a Goonie?
@Josh_Brolin answers: Goonies Never Say Die. And I am a Goonie. Invalid question.
14. He's still remaining mum on his true feelings about the "Oldboy" remake.
@o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o asks: Dude. You were awesome in No Country and True Grit. I just watched Old Boy last week, and again I was blown away by how awesome you were. How do you think the American Old Boy stacked up against the classic Korean version? It seems like there would have been a lot of pressure to get it right.
@Josh_Brolin answers: Don't ever really think about the pressure of getting it right. I think we were more into doing our own version. But I am still a massive fan of the original version. It's one of the best. That series, that trilogy, is one of the best in all Asian filmmaking.
15. He's not much of a TV watcher.
@seismicor asks: Do you, or your daughter, watch Game of Thrones? Do you have a favourite character?
@Josh_Brolin's daughter answers: YESS!!!! Absolutely. My favorite character is Tyrion. All the way.
@Josh_Brolin answers: And I haven't seen TV since Happy Days. Or Laverne & Shirley. To be continued...
I do love Breaking Bad. That's the only TV show I ever watched.
16. Expect to see some Tony Stark-Thanos sparring in a future Marvel film.
@pimbvlo asks: What was it like to play Thanos? How long did it take to put on all that makeup? And do you know of any plans you can tell us about your character? THANK YOU!!
@Josh_Brolin[S] answers: Thanos was a one-day process: it was a digital process that I was personally involved in.
Once I was at Comic-Con I realized what it meant to everybody. The critics' impact is minimal here, it's all about the fans. And when I was at Comic-Con, I realized the great rivalry between Robert & myself, and so did Marvel, so I think they have big plans for Thanos in the future.
17. Working with Paul Thomas Anderson sounds about as insane as you would expect.
@AlexanderBirchson asks: We all are looking forward to see "Inherent Vice". How would you describe working with Paul Thomas Anderson?
@Josh_Brolin[S] answers: After Goonies and the Coens, one of the greatest experiences of my life. He creates an ambience of creative insanity. It felt like swimming in a Ralph Steadman drawing. Whoa, deep. Heavy.
18. Yes, he knows "Jonah Hex" is terrible.
@Sheriffnickgrimes: Mr. Brolin, what went through your mind as you read the script for "Jonah Hex"?
@Josh_Brolin[S] asks: A great opportunity to do something like High Plains Drifter. Which was one of my favorite films. Didn't turn out that way. Sorry.
19. "Thrashin' 2"? Comin' atcha.
@LouisArmstrong3 asks: HEY JOSH! when will you be making Thrashin' 2?
@Josh_Brolin[S] answers: Right after Goonies 2. Back to back.
20. He LIVED your worst Russell Crowe nightmare.
@ckk524 asks: Hi Josh, Thanks for doing an AMA!
Loved American Gangster. What was it like working on set with Russell Crowe and Denzel Washington? Did any thing wild happen on set.
@Josh_Brolin answers: Yeah. With Russell, I told him before when I was doing "No Country" that I was going to lose weight for the role, so they had the measurements of what I was supposed to be. When I showed up, apparently, I had forgotten to lose the weight, so I put on my wardrobe and went to rehearse my first scene with Russell. I was nervous (obviously) and excited, I asked Ridley if it was ok if we just ran through the scene once, I grabbed a chair and sat next to Russell. Halfway through the scene, and the seat of my pants ripped wide open. I missed the mark in making it a joke to break the ice between Russell and I. Once the scene was over, nobody was very impressed, and I went back to my trailer waiting to be fired. So while I was in my trailer, pantsless, there was a knock at the door, waiting there was Ridley, who said "I love the vulnerability you've brought to the role. Let's go more with that."
21. There is one very simple way to be like Josh Brolin.
@Ladylovelybones asks: Any tips on how to be as awesome as Josh Brolin?
@Josh_Brolin[S] answers: Leopardskin thong.