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Clint Eastwood on Michael Moore Feud, Why He Won’t Do Comic Book Movies

Variety logo Variety 4/22/2015 Brent Lang
© Provided by Variety

Clint Eastwood may be cinema’s best known avenger, but the “Dirty Harry” star won’t be donning a cape and tights to fight crime.

“I read comic books when I was a kid, I don’t read them now,” said Eastwood during a question and answer session about his life and career at the Las Vegas exhibition trade show CinemaCon on Wednesday.

That means he won’t be appearing in a Marvel movie anytime soon.

“I prefer adult-oriented pictures,” Eastwood said. “I mean that in the PG-13 or R sense, but that’s as far as it goes.”

Eastwood also revealed that even though he’s world famous, he still buys tickets to see movies on the big screen. He most recently made the trip to the multiplexes to see “The Grand Budapest Hotel” and plans to support his son Scott by paying full freight to see “The Longest Ride.”

“We’ll see if he’s a chip off the old block,” he added.

The Oscar-winner recently scored his biggest commercial hit with “American Sniper,” the highest-grossing domestic release of 2014. Part of the film’s appeal was that it examined the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in a novel way, Eastwood observed.

“Nobody really thought of it from the point of view of the families of the people who go there and the people who go there,” he said.

Eastwood only got a chance to slip into the director’s chair on “American Sniper” after scheduling conflicts forced Steven Spielberg to drop the project. “I’m taking your leftovers again,” Eastwood recalled telling Spielberg when he called him to let him know he planned to direct the picture.

As for his follow-up to “American Sniper” Eastwood denied recent speculation that he would direct a film about Richard Jewell, the security guard who discovered a suspicious backpack in the Olympics compound during the 1996 games in Atlanta. He said it wasn’t clear if the film would come to fruition.

The hour-long discussion touched on everything from Eastwood’s most-admired directors, such as Don Siegel and Sergio Leone, to his favorite films (“Unforgiven,” “Million Dollar Baby” and “The Outlaw Josey Wales” got shout outs). Eastwood also addressed some areas of controversy, such as his feud with Michael Moore.

The “Bowling for Columbine” director claimed that Eastwood had previously threatened his life at the National Board of Review Awards dinner in 2005 and said he would shoot Moore if he ever came to his house with a camera.

Eastwood said he was upset that Moore had showed up on NRA President Charlton Heston’s doorstep in that film to grill him on gun control, because he said the actor was ailing and had Alzheimer’s.

“Everybody’s saying I threatened to kill Michael Moore,” said Eastwood. “That’s not true.”

“It isn’t a bad idea,” he added, after a pause — followed by nervous laughter from the audience.

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