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PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT
Charlie Sheen Fallout; Interview With Oscar-winning Producer Harvey Weinstein; Interview With Senator Scott Brown
Aired March 1, 2011 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PIERS MORGAN, HOST: Tonight, Charlie Sheen --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHARLIE SHEEN, ACTOR: It's really a pleasure.
MORGAN: It's my pleasure.
(END OF VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: The fallout from our blockbuster interview.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SHEEN: I'm a winner, and their lives look like they're, you know, ruled by losers. Just to see put it in black and white terms. I don't want their lives and they want mine. They want to criticize the hell out of it. You know? And now they've run the gamut from, like, OK, he's not loaded, now what? He's manic.
I don't even know what that means. I guess that would imply that there's going to be a crash. I don't know when that's something, but maybe you can cover it when it does. You know?
(END OF VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Plus, the king of Hollywood, Harvey Weinstein, on his stunning Oscar triumph and what he think of Charlie Sheen.
Also tonight, inside the mind of a dictator. Christiane Amanpour and her interview with Moammar Gadhafi. Is he really losing his grip on reality?
And the man behind the biggest upset in American politics.
SEN. SCOTT BROWN (R), MASSACHUSETTS: There's no sure thing in politics. I'm certainly proof of that.
MORGAN: Scott Brown rocked the political world when he won Ted Kennedy's Senate seat. Tonight, the secret childhood trauma that haunts him to this day.
This is PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT. Good evening, we begin tonight with the interview that everyone is talking about. My extraordinary encounter with Charlie Sheen last night. You heard him in his own words. Now CBS president Les Moonves says he hopes that Sheen's series "Two and a Half Men" comes back but he's made no promises.
Now I want to know what the experts think. Joining me is Bob Forrest, director of the Hollywood Recovery Services. He's an addict himself and an addiction specialist.
Also joining us, one of the best crisis PR men in the business, Howard Bergman, founded the firm "Fifteen Minutes" Public Relations.
Howard, let me start with you because you've been in this kind of crisis management for a very long time. Your old friend, Stan Rosenfeld, who is Charlie Sheen's publicist, resigned yesterday. Clearly felt that he could no longer control his client.
What did you make of that? And if you were advising Charlie Sheen now, what would you do to try and perhaps rebuild the bridge that's crashed around him?
HOWARD BRAGMAN, "FIFTEEN MINUTES" PUBLIC RELATIONS: You know, Stan's a very good friend, and he did the right thing. When your client is not listening to you and they're going downhill, you sort of go downhill with them. So unless you distance yourself, you have to take the hit which is why Stan left when he did.
I know he's a very loyal guy. But Charlie was just off the ranch.
If he was my client, I'd try and shut him up. I don't know if I'd use duct tape, straightjacket, whatever it took, Piers, but he's got to shut up. He's just digging this deeper hole and showing his psychological problems worsen every moment.
MORGAN: I mean, it seems to me there's another way of looking at this which is that Charlie Sheen's playing a very high-risk strategy but playing it quite effectively where he is piling pressure back on CBS. And the pressure comes from the fact that the show is phenomenally successful and he's the star of the show. And without him, there's no show.
He's almost playing the Hollywood power game in his own way, and doing it in a way no one's done before, isn't he?
BRAGMAN: Well, he's certainly playing a power game, but he's playing it with people like Warner Brothers, CBS, Les Moonves, Chuck Laurie. He's played it against some of the most successful players in Hollywood.
And let me tell you, what Charlie doesn't like to lose, those guys don't like to lose either, and they have a lot more power than he does. And they're willing to take a writeoff to be right.
MORGAN: Let me turn to you now, Bob. I want to play you a clip from the interview last night and then ask you from an addiction expert point of view what you make of it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SHEEN: It's only illegal if I admit to it and they never once checked with me. And you know, you always got to consider the source. And you look at some of these retarded zombies, these trolls that roll out and heading back for the -- like, you know, a rock to craw back under before the sun peeks out, and they're putting so much stock into the -- into the words and the thoughts. And the -- as I've said, the gibberish of fools. And not checking anything with me. There's no interest in cross checking the story with me.
MORGAN: You wouldn't deny taking hits of cocaine?
SHEEN: Well, no, of course not. I mean, duh? But I'm just saying --
(END OF VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: What do you make of that, Bob? I mean he denies being an addict. Do you believe him? Do you think he --
BOB FORREST, HOLLYWOOD RECOVERY SERVICES: He's not denying being an addict. He kind of says I'm kind of an addict but I cured myself.
MORGAN: Well, he actually almost questioned the fact he'd ever been an addict.
FORREST: Yes. Well, he's something. Everybody is paying attention to a train wreck that's been going on for weeks and months and years. And it's -- seems to me it's been getting progressively crazier, and you know I don't know how much of it is his posturing and how much of it is mental illness, how much of it is addiction. But the drug test didn't mean anything. Obviously he is drug-free. He's still, you know, acting issue rational and --
MORGAN: When you watched him, you were here.
FORREST: Yes. I was here.
MORGAN: You were in the building. What did you make of the whole interview in context?
FORREST: I just felt -- I felt a heavy heart. I just feel like, you know, there's something -- he's so angry it seems like to me. There's a humor to it, but it's very -- a lot of anger down deep. And that's I think what, you know, he's unable to focus on or deal with so he projects it outward at 12 Steps or rehabs or these people or that -- those people.
MORGAN: He says the 12-step program for him doesn't work. He says he knows people it has worked for. But for him, he says it's just a non-starter. FORREST: Yes. And a lot of people feel that way until they try it and it works for them. I mean, I felt that way about it. I went to 24 rehab centers, it didn't work for me. I was thoroughly convinced it didn't until I kind of got to a place where I would listen to somebody else.
I think that's the key thing. He gets his butt kissed a lot and so he kind of -- he kind of doesn't trust anyone. He has to trust someone.
MORGAN: Here's a way to think. I mean people, you know, watched TV last night had lots of contrary views about it. Charlie to me when he sat in front of me last night wasn't massively dissimilar to the Charlie I remember from the early '90s.
MORGAN: He was a party boy then, and he was just as edgy, and smart, and funny, and a little bit wild as the guy that I saw last night. I mean it doesn't seem to me so much that he's changed as the opinion of him has changed, because he's now on this big family comedy and not just a big movie s star.
FORREST: You see, I followed all that narrative. It seems like he got done what he wanted getting done. He apologized to CBS, he apologized for the -- what was suggested as anti-Semitic remarks.
So he did his job. What he wanted to come here and do which he hadn't done on the other shows. But you're 50 and you have five children. That's -- the party days are over. I mean, you know, everyone has to grow up sometime. And it seems like there is this process that he's fighting for.
MORGAN: Howard, let me bring you back in here. I mean, as a publicist, I've heard this many times when I was a newspaper editor, you know, a celebrity is entitled to a private life. And you hear that spun out by publicists every day of the year.
Charlie Sheen's belief, very firmly, is that he is entitled to a private life. And if that private life is not adversely affecting his professional working environment, and it didn't seem to be much, then what's the problem?
BRAGMAN: Well, I think there is a problem because, number one, as Bob said earlier, it was spiraling out of control. You know, these -- when somebody reaches middle age and we still see this behavior, they don't stop. They accelerate. And that's what we've seen over the last few months.
It started with an arrest in Colorado, and it's just continued with trashing the hotel room last fall in New York. And it's just getting worse and worse.
And I don't think CBS or Warner Brothers wanted this train to crash on their watch and feel like they hadn't done something and they hadn't done all they could. And they may be a big corporation but there's real people behind it. And I think they have heart.
And I think -- I think it's a very interesting legal case that's going come up. And it's sure to come up. I expect there to be a lot of litigation over this if they don't resolve it. But he's a train wreck. And there comes a point when you have to say, I'm not going to let this happen on my watch, Piers.
MORGAN: Let me ask you, Bob. I mean, do you look at a guy and think his life's in danger?
FORREST: You know, I try to -- I tend to just focus on the here and now. He's out of control and he's angry. That's what seems to be what I saw through all this media coverage. He's out of control, he's angry. He's drug-free. We saw that. So how do you help somebody who hates what you're trying to provide to them, is out of control, and angry? You can't really. Something has to happen.
MORGAN: Has to work it out for himself.
FORREST: Yes. And that's -- so I don't threaten people, oh, you're going to die or you're going to do this. No more of this is going to happen. More of Colorado, more of this chaos, this kind of surrounding all this.
Now I think his addiction is also using the CBS TV show to its advantage. Like he's doing the courageous chivalrous thing. I think it's all this bunch of hooey like he said. He's out of control and it's very sad.
MORGAN: Bob Forrest, Howard Bragman, thank you both very much.
We'll have much more on Charlie Sheen later including the views of one of the biggest -- movie producers in Hollywood.
But now Moammar Gadhafi. The U.S. ambassador for U.N. called him delusional. But is he really that bad or mad?
ABC News' Christiane Amanpour landed a big exclusive interview with him.
Christiane, another great scoop by you. It seem that when the Middle East leaders want to talk they talk to you unfortunately, and not me.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, ABC NEWS ANCHOR: Piers, you know, what can I say? Here I am in the region. Being here a long time covering this region. And I have in fact interviewed Colonel Gadhafi before.
When I met him yesterday, when he came up to the restaurant where we were going to do the interview, he remembered that we had sat together and had an interview actually back in 1996.
MORGAN: Well, I'm going to play you a little clip from your interview now and then I'll come back and ask you what you made of it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MOAMMAR GADHAFI, LIBYAN LEADER: They loved me. All my people with me. They love me all.
AMANPOUR: But if they do love you --
GADHAFI: They will die to protect me, my people. No. No. Some --
AMANPOUR: If you say they do love you, then why are they capturing Benghazi and they say they're against you there? Why are they --
GADHAFI: It's al Qaeda, it's al Qaeda, it's al Qaeda. They're not my people. It's al Qaeda.
AMANPOUR: Al Qaeda.
GADHAFI: Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda. Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda.
GADHAFI: They can promote Saif.
(END OF VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: I mean it sounds to me, Christiane, he's completely delusional, isn't he? On the one hand saying all his people love him. On the other hand, he's out in the streets with his people killing them.
AMANPOUR: Obviously we were looking for any kind of (INAUDIBLE) understanding of the state of mind this person. When he turned up, he was focused, he was relaxed, he was determined to put his side of the story out. And despite the situation where he's practically lost every major city from east to west and holds out only in the stronghold of the capital Tripoli -- of course, that is about 1/3 of the population -- he's nonetheless exhibited no send of siege.
However when we asked him about the protests and he said over and over there are no protests, well, clearly that is at odds with the realty.
MORGAN: Does he take any personal responsibility for the deaths of his people right now?
AMANPOUR: When we ask about that, though, he says no, no reasonable person would shoot peaceful protesters. And then the second sentence is that these are all militants, that our people only shoot in self-defense. And those people are al Qaeda and terrorists.
MORGAN: Do you believe that it's inevitable that Gadhafi is going to go because what's -- what sense did you get from him? Does he think he can just ride this out?
AMANPOUR: Yes. He says that to us anyway, and he said it in many of his public speeches, many of the rants and the raves. He says that he can survive it. He says that, I will live here and die here. There is a sense that he will not give up. Some people, some of his former ministers, people who defected, have said that either he will die or he'll commit suicide or he will survive.
MORGAN: Do you sense there's any real kind of anti-Americanism here, or is it different? Is this really about dissatisfied young people in their own country saying we've had enough of these despotic rulers? Enough of the old guard. We're going to do things our way now? And if that is the case, is this good for America and the west, do you think?
AMANPOUR: Well, to your question about whether it's anti- American or whether it's the people here themselves, it is the people in this region themselves. It's the young people. Nowhere do we hear anything about the foreign policy, about the traditional, you know, angst that this region has, for instance, over Palestinians and Israelis and blaming the U.S. policy for all of this.
Nowhere is it about U.S. foreign policy. It is all about their desires. In fact, they say even in Benghazi, which is held by the opposition, we do not want any foreign intervention. This is our movement. This is our moment. And they're very, very clear about that.
MORGAN: Christiane Amanpour, as always, a brilliant insight into what's going on there. Thank you very much.
AMANPOUR: Thank you, Piers.
MORGAN: Coming up is Hollywood's top dog, Harvey Weinstein. His Oscar triumph and his reaction to Charlie Sheen's meltdown.
MORGAN: Harvey Weinstein is a toast of Hollywood after his Oscar win for the brilliant "King's Speech." And he's here with me.
Harvey, how are you?
HARVEY WEINSTEIN, EXECUTIVE PRODUCER, "THE KING'S SPEECH": Piers, I'm -- couldn't be better.
MORGAN: Does it get better in Hollywood than being the guy that produced "the movie"?
WEINSTEIN: Well, I was executive producer, but I had a bit to do with it.
MORGAN: It's all you, Harvey.
WEINSTEIN: No, it's not all me. It's a team effort, as you know, with this television show. But it's fantastic. It's cloud nine. It's one of the most exhilarating experiences you can have.
Piers, I recommend it to you next year.
MORGAN: I'd love to. Ready to star in any of your films, Harvey.
WEINSTEIN: And I'm happy to do the show while you're making a movie.
MORGAN: Well, to give you some idea of the sheer scale of your achieve in Hollywood, we're going to play a montage of clips of some of your films.
MORGAN: Memorable moments there from "Good Will Hunting," "Shakespeare in Love," "English Patient", "Inglorious Basterds" and "Chicago." All five movies won Oscars.
Have you got the Midas touch, haven't you? You really have.
WEINSTEIN: Listen, I've had great years, I've had not-so great years, and I've -- not so great years, and I've had really bad years. This happens to be one of those really good years.
MORGAN: Here's the extraordinary thing. This is what I'm fascinated by, why I wanted you to come in today. I met you in New York in January and then again in February. And things were not going well for "The King's Speech." "Social Network" was getting all traction. It won at the Globes, it won at various other award ceremonies. And you admitted to me, you know, we've got real problems here.
And then you launched what was one of the greatest comebacks I've ever seen. Because suddenly, from literally I think -- me thinking it's all over, whoosh, "Social Network" booted out of the stratosphere. And people think of Oscars -- in comes "King's Speech" and you walked away with all the top awards.
What did you do? I mean did you kneecap people? What happens in there?
WEINSTEIN: No kneecap.
MORGAN: How do you go about it? What's the business of turning around an Oscar campaign?
WEINSTEIN: First of all, "Social Network" is a fabulous movie. Sorkin is an amazing writer, Fincher great director, and Scott Rudin, despite what people say, and this ongoing feud, is probably one of the best if not the best producer in town. But I have to win --
MORGAN: But how did you kill it?
WEINSTEIN: I have to win for me, and I didn't kill them.
MORGAN: You did kill them. WEINSTEIN: We won. There's a difference.
MORGAN: They're watching this. They want to kill you.
WEINSTEIN: They also have three Oscars. I mean they won, as well, too.
WEINSTEIN: But here's what we did that's not remarkable to any high school football kid or anybody who plays sports. We never stopped. We didn't admit defeat. We were defeated, but we just kept going. We just worked hard. Nose to the grindstone. It's tenacity and it's not knowing when you're out of the race.
MORGAN: What was the key thing that you felt you had to do to get this film back on its tracks?
WEINSTEIN: I think losing the Golden Globe for best picture for me, feeling that that was something that we could win was the absolute thing that instead of making me quit like a lot of people said, absolutely motivated me the complete opposite way.
At that point, I just said however many hours there are in a day, I'm going to expand the amount of hours there are in a day.
MORGAN: And what do you physically do in that time? What are the key things you had to change?
WEINSTEIN: There's only one thing to really do. You've got to get people to see your movie. You've got to create an atmosphere where people can appreciate your movie. To us it was the timelessness of the movie. A lot of people said this movie or that movie is more -- younger, hipper, cooler, socially relevant.
And you have to say the timelessness, a classic movie, you know, conquers all. And that was what we wanted to get across. And just getting people to watch it.
MORGAN: And how big a part was it to use the stars of the film? They came on this show and they were great advertisement for the film. How important is it to get your front people out there selling that movie?
WEINSTEIN: It's important to get it -- a movie connected to an audience, and it's important in an Oscar campaign. The thing you have to remember on movies like "The King's Speech" or "Black Swan" or "Social Network," these are not the movies that audiences are rushing to see like they want to see "Batman" or they want to see "Ironman." Those are the kids driving the box office in great numbers.
These are adult movies. Adults have a lot of things to do. They're watching the crisis, they're watching the news, they're watching their kids. You know, so to get an adult audience motivated, you've got to use all the firepower and create all the excitement you can. And that's what we do. MORGAN: When you heard the words "best movie , 'The King's Speech'," what did you feel?
WEINSTEIN: I was elated. I mean it just absolutely jumping for joy. You know, it was an amazing experience --
MORGAN: One of the greatest moments of your life?
WEINSTEIN: It's fantastic. And I was sitting next to Frank Marshall, the great producer, and Kathleen Kennedy -- you know, Kathleen made "Schindler's List." You know, Frank has made so many great movies, "Raiders of the Lost Ark," et cetera, et cetera. I mean, you know, just to be -- you know sitting next to them.
MORGAN: Fantastic moment.
WEINSTEIN: Amazing moment.
MORGAN: We'll go on a short break. When we come back, I want to get your take on the story everyone is talking about, Charlie Sheen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SHEEN: I was late a couple of days when we were just practicing. When it was just rehearsal. I never caused the production or the show or the studio or the network any money as far as missing a show or missing a day that was a money day.
(END OF VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: I mean, that's the business of Hollywood. What did you make -- what do you make of the Charlie Sheen story from a position of being a top producer in Hollywood?
WEINSTEIN: I worked with Charlie Sheen. He's one of the best actors when motivated. You know, you see performances in "Wall Street" or "Platoon." In our case he did "Scary Movie" and he sent up his own image.
Look, I think that, you know, it's hard to judge, but he's got great family with Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez. And I hope that -- you know, the family and everybody rallies around him. And you know they may come up with a good decision.
MORGAN: I mean, in a funny way, he's playing quite a smart game, isn't he? We haven't seen someone do this -- take on the power of a network and just go rogue, and say, I'm the big star of the show, I'm a massive business you to, and I'm not going to play by the rules.
WEINSTEIN: I know Les Moonves.
WEINSTEIN: Charlie is playing a losing game. MORGAN: You think so?
MORGAN: Les is the boss of CBS.
WEINSTEIN: And Les is, you know --
MORGAN: What do you think will happen --
WEINSTEIN: Les is maverick in this situation. He's holding the cards.
MORGAN: Right. But he sort of hinted today, Les Moonves, that he may bring the show back. Do you think he will? Is it too big a business to not bring him --
WEINSTEIN: I don't know. But I trust Les to make the right decision. He's cool, he's smart, and he's wildly successful. And not one show is going to make the difference to CBS.
CBS is under Les Moonves makes $1 billion a year in a business that people say isn't working. It's like Universal Records. All the other companies, I mean, aren't doing anything, and somehow the Universal Music Group with Jimmy Iovine and LA Reid makes a fortune.
Les Moonves knows how to program, Les Moonves knows how to make a show.
WEINSTEIN: That's a dangerous guy to go against.
MORGAN: Would you hire Charlie Sheen?
WEINSTEIN: I'd hire Charlie Sheen to do "Scary Movie 4, 5, 6, 7." All of them.
MORGAN: Would you put him in a series maybe or no?
WEINSTEIN: I don't make TV series, so thank god. I mean that's not my --
MORGAN: "King's Speech 2." The stuttering maniac from West Hollywood?
MORGAN: We've seen a series of stories involving, say, Mel Gibson, who's obviously seen -- you know his career hit a difficult patch. We've seen Lindsay Lohan, a different circumstance, but again, in trouble. Christina Aguilera today, arrested in a DUI thing with her boyfriend.
When these things happen, does it really make a lot of difference to the business of movies, television, music? I mean, this is stuff that's gone on for years.
WEINSTEIN: I think it makes a difference in terms of, you know, hopefully the people are in good shape healthwise. That they can continue to do the best possible job -- you know, each case is different. Each case is a mistake but you know, movies, media, politics, we all have a rich history of, you know, these kind of things happening.
You take a -- great plays, great literature are made about this. You know, we can start with the earliest one, Achilles did have a heel.
MORGAN: Yes. Exactly. Look, you're in a great position. How many Oscars have you got at home?
WEINSTEIN: I have about -- probably 15 or 20 at home.
MORGAN: Because you've won 67 Oscars.
MORGAN: For your films.
MORGAN: And you got 20 other at home. And you've got young kids. What goes on? Do they treat them with respect or perhaps --
WEINSTEIN: The thing that I knew that I had to do immediately after we won was rush to the party where I had three of my daughters, Lily, Emma, and Ruthie, I mean hanging out at the party. Lily was smart. She's the experienced one at 16. She reserved the Oscar.
India, the six-month-old, you know, obviously can't talk now. But a year from now she'll get hers. But I think she was a big inspiration. You know, all four of them are incredible. Four daughters. OK?
MORGAN: You've got your work cut out there.
WEINSTEIN: Yes, mm-hmm.
MORGAN: You've made so many great --
WEINSTEIN: You think an Oscar campaign is hard, try to be a dad to four girls.
MORGAN: Well, my brother has got four girls. Tell me. I know about it. He goes to war in Afghanistan to get away from it.
Tell me what your dream team would be. If you could make the ultimate movie for people dead or alive, you know, director, producer, leading man, leading lady, who would it be?
WEINSTEIN: Well, I own a book called "Mila 18". It's about the uprising in the Warsaw ghetto. You talk about, you know -- this is the story about 1500 Jews in the Warsaw, I mean, when, you know, they were about to exterminate everybody in Poland who was Jewish. 1500 freedom fighters made a suicide pact that -- you know, that in 24 hours they'll all go to their death and begin an offensive against the Germans.
You know, and they're outnumbered 10-1, 20-1, and met tanks, et cetera. So I think that's a great story. We own it. But if I could get somebody to direct it, it would be John Ford, the great -- American moviemaker.
MORGAN: And who would produce it?
WEINSTEIN: Probably producing it would be Hal Wallace and there's actually somebody alive who is young -- a young man at 87 years old, his name is Walter Mirsh. I saw him this Hollywood season. He did "In the Heat of the Night," he did "The Apartment." He's done some of the greatest movies ever.
MORGAN: Leading man, leading lady?
WEINSTEIN: Leading lady?
MORGAN: Best actor and actress you've ever seen?
WEINSTEIN: I think Katherine Hepburn could play the leading lady. Audrey Hepburn could play the leading lady.
MORGAN: And the man?
WEINSTEIN: Both Hepburns could play that. And the man's got to be -- god, that's a hard one. This role is a quiet man with strength. I --
WEINSTEIN: You know Henry Fonda would be amazing in this.
MORGAN: Henry Fonda.
MORGAN: Henry Fonda and Katharine Hepburn.
WEINSTEIN: Kirk Douglas could do this part, you know, when he was 30.
MORGAN: I watched Kirk at the Oscars. I'll have him back in a movie now.
WEINSTEIN: Me too.
MORGAN: Well, he stole the show.
WEINSTEIN: Me too. I thought he was amazing .
MORGAN: Funny. You've got a new movie, very interesting film because you're Jewish and you got together with another Jewish guy, making with you. And you're making a film that's being seen by many as pro-Palestine. It's called "Miral", it comes out March 25th. Let's play a little clip.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Does she live here?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She is my daughter. It must be --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Call her, please.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She's asleep. It's very late.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sit down. Sit down.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What are you -- I don't understand.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: See, she's already.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Don't worry, papa. I'll be back soon.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Miral, there is some misunderstanding.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Pretty controversial that you're making this film.
WEINSTEIN: This film is directed by Julian Schnabel. I didn't make the movie. I'm distributing this movie, which -- we acquire films sometime. I saw this film, produced by John Killig, directed by Julian Schnabel, about the life of a woman called Miral, who's really Rula Jebreal, a girl who grew up in Palestine.
The scene you see is Israeli troops arresting an innocent Palestinian girl. Friends of mine who are Jewish, you mean, have said to me, how the hell could you be involved in a movie like this.
MORGAN: What's the simple answer?
WEINSTEIN: The simple answer is if you don't tell the story from both sides, you will never understand everything we're watching in Libya, Egypt, you know, et cetera. I know you're not supposed to be political, but you can't exist in this world if you aren't.
MORGAN: I think --
WEINSTEIN: This is an important movie. I don't care how controversial or how many people tell us not to show it. It makes me more determined.
MORGAN: Good for you. Because I think people in your position should take risks like that. And I look forward to watching it.
WEINSTEIN: Thank you.
MORGAN: Harvey, been a pleasure. Congratulations, really. A magnificent day for you and your company.
Coming up, the man behind one of the biggest upsets in American politics, Senator Scott Brown. Think you've heard the whole story? Just wait.
MORGAN: Senator Scott Brown pulled off one of the biggest political upsets in recent memory when he won Ted Kennedy's old Senate seat. But behind the confident facade, he was hiding a dark secret of childhood trauma. He reveals that secret in his new book "Against All Odds." And Senator Scott Brown joins me now.
This is one of the most extraordinary books I have read in a very long time, and I'll tell you why. When you won in Massachusetts and you inherited this extraordinarily famous legendary seat against all the odds -- I mean literally against all the odds -- I thought you were the classic archetypal American politician.
You've got the look, you had the demeanor, everything about you screamed normality. And I read this book and it's shocking. Anyway you describe it. But also very inspiring. You came from a quite extraordinarily tough, abusive, poverty-stricken background to rise to the top of your profession.
And I think it's the inspiring bit that got to me more than the shocking stuff.
SEN. SCOTT BROWN (R), MASSACHUSETTS: Good.
MORGAN: Was that your intention, was it designed to inspire people more than anything else?
BROWN: Yes. I want -- I wanted obviously a book that was a good book to read first of all. If I'm going to write a book, I want it to be a good piece of literature. That being said, I didn't want to, you know, just gloss over the tough things and say oh, you know, I'm great, I'm great, I won this great seat, everything's wonderful because like many others in this world, and you know probably many of them yourself who have had just as tough difficulties.
I, you know -- if you have good people around them you can make a difference and kind of get out of that cycle.
MORGAN: The most extraordinary thing is until a couple of weeks before this book came out, your mother knew nothing about any of this.
MORGAN: And she got -- she married four times and I think you moved how -- 17 times in 12 years?
BROWN: By the time I was 18, yes.
MORGAN: I mean extraordinary upbringing in many ways. You were physically abused by two stepfathers, and then you were sexually abused by a camp counselor. None of this you ever discussed with your mother until literally a few months ago.
BROWN: Well, she'd obviously knew about the stepfathers because that -- we lived it together, my sister, my mom and me.
MORGAN: Because they were being violated too.
BROWN: They were -- they were -- they were right there, obviously.
MORGAN: But the sexual abuse?
BROWN: The sexual abuse, listen, when you're -- when you're 10 years old and you try to tell your parents, first of all the -- the -- the perpetrator says, you know, no one will believe you. Secondly if -- if you try to tell or I find out you're telling I'll hurt you or I'll kill you and I'll make sure I hurt your parents too.
So there -- there's that control thing. My mom actually as we've been -- she's obviously read it since. As we were talking about it she said, "Was that the summer you kept calling to come home?" I said, "Yeah, it was."
MORGAN: So she has now read the book.
BROWN: Oh yeah. She's -- she's read it now.
MORGAN: So what does she make of it?
BROWN: She said it's pretty personal. Obviously a lot of her and my dad's problems are out there now. But the one thing I keep telling her is mom -- I said mom, read the whole book. Because what people will get from that is that we, like many other families we're a work in progress but that you're a hard worker, you had two and three jobs to keep a -- to keep a roof over our head and you never quit. And that's one thing my mom has given me, the never-quit attitude.
And it's been kind of cathartic in that we -- we've been able to talk about a whole host of other things now. And it's just that opening the door, I think, people need sometimes to kind of talk about things. Now, it took me 42 years. Writing this book, it really gave me an opportunity to kind of open that door and then just take the next couple of baby steps. So --
MORGAN: I'm fascinated by the motivation behind this. The cynical journalist in me says OK, I think this guy has got lofty political ambition, he may want to run for President one day. Better to get it all out now. That's the cynic in me.
The reality when I finished reading it was I didn't get that sense at all. I got a sense that you know, I think you hit it on the head. Cathartic. See, it's something you've been wanting to get out there and you just thought, you know something I'm now going to do this.
BROWN: I think that's a fair assessment. You know, when they came to me to write a book, first of all, I was honored to do it. It was kind of overwhelming, but once I started I said you know, I have a chance here. I have a chance here to do a whole host of things.
Let people know who have been judgmental over the years about me and my positions, to say you know what? You guys have no clue. No clue. I mean you had a perception. You pointed it out in the beginning of the show. So if people can be inspired by that, great. If I can have other people, you know, kind of talk about their challenges and their abuse, hey, I'm very happy.
I've gotten hundreds and hundreds of calls from people saying it happened to me, it happened to my brother, my sister so that's all good. I'm very excited about that.
MORGAN: But did -- did part of you think I should talk about this before other people do as your star rises?
BROWN: No, it wasn't that.
MORGAN: Was that at the back of our mind as well?
BROWN: Not -- not -- not with the abuse stuff. The shoplifting stuff, it was kind of out there a little bit. The -- the -- the parental, you know, the battles, the divorces and everything, that's been kind of out there. But I just wanted to set the record straight in my own words and not have anybody, you know, misrepresent who I am and what I am and what I've done with my life.
MORGAN: One of the more vivid things in the book is where you describe absolutely perfectly the guy that abused you in the camp. You can remember him to this day right down to what he looked like, his hair, his teeth, his clothing, everything,. If found that very compelling that it had such an effect on a 10-year-old boy that every tiny detail is sort of etched in your mind.
BROWN: You don't forget something like that. I think anybody who's had a traumatic experience at whatever age, they don't forget. It's something that I've certainly tried to push back and, you know, keep in the back of my head but it's always there, you know, popping up periodically and especially when I'm dealing with my daughters, and they are going for a sleep over, or going to a basketball camp, or going over -- you know, doing something.
And I say hey, stranger danger. Remember stranger danger. If somebody does A, B, C or D, be sure to tell mom and dad. We won't be mad. Don't be embossed. Because that's the biggest thing, they had that control with -- they'll say no one will ever believe you, period. And that's what you believe.
MORGAN: Which is a familiar tale of almost everyone who's abused at that age.
MORGAN: Because they play on the kind of innocence of a child, not to really know what's going on anyway. I mean, were you aware that what he was doing was wrong? BROWN: Oh, absolutely. I fought back. That's another thing I would recommend to people is fight back. I fought back, and was glad I did, obviously, and then really, wish in retrospect I would have told somebody. But once again, I mean, you're in that environment at a sleep over camp where it's a two-month camp, who do you tell because you're there? And then when you call home and you know, they say it's OK, you'll get over it, it's -- you know, you're just homesick, whatever. I mean like no, I'm not homesick. But how do you tell?
And I -- as I'm older now and more confident, sure, it's easy to tell it now. And it was a nice door opening for me to kind of let it out. But it's been helpful for my wife and my family and I to talk about not only that, but some of the other things that have happened. And it's brought us a whole lot closer which is really moving for me, personally.
MORGAN: We're going to take a short break now, senator. When I do, I want to come back and to to you about the most extraordinary political achievement, which was that you became the first Republican since 1972 to win the seat in Massachusetts.
MORGAN: Back now with my guest Senator Scott Brown.
Senator, another interesting aspect of the book was you didn't seem to tell your wife about this sexual abuse until it came to the time to write the book. Why was that?
BROWN: Embarrassment. I don't think it's something I'm proud of, certainly. I know it's something I'm not proud of. But she read the galleys and that enabled us to kind of work through it and talk about it more and more. And now that the book has actually come out, we were in New York this weekend still talking about it.
And little bits and pieces keep coming out. And she's very sensitive in terms of asking, you know, tell me a little bit about this and this and this to give her a better picture.
Listen, anyone who was in that position, they just don't want to talk about it. It's -- it's -- it's embarrassing. For a guy, especially.
MORGAN: Did it affect relationships with women when you were --
BROWN: I don't think so. I don't think so. But I've always had very positive relationships. I've been married 24 years, with her 26. So if it -- if it -- if it did, then it's a good -- good way it did because I'm together with her.
MORGAN: I mean, a remarkable secret to keep from a happily married wife.
BROWN: Yes. Yes. It's something that, you know, I've wrestled with. And whenever there was somebody who was maybe in the public eye and you see somebody who's having a similar situation and you say, you know, that happened to me and you feel like saying yeah, by the way, it happened to me and then it's about me, versus focusing on those peoples' tragedy or circumstances. So --
MORGAN: How did your children react to it? Because they're all getting older now.
BROWN: I just got a call the other night from Ayla (ph) who read it. She was doing a gig in Colorado musical event and she called and said dad, I get it now. I understand why you were so protective. Thank you. I understand. And so she was very good.
My youngest daughter, it's been difficult for her to -- to -- she gets angry. She wants to go, you know, stick up for dad. So -- but it's been, once again, a good opportunity to talk as a family and kind of bond a little bit better.
MORGAN: Well what are your thoughts to the man that abused you?
BROWN: Well, I've moved on. I'm a forward thinker. Certainly, I've moved on. And I'm not out to, you know, file any lawsuits or anything like that. But I kind of feel bad for him. And I wonder once in a while if he -- if he remembers or recognizes me now. But you know --
MORGAN: I mean, he might be watching this.
BROWN: Could be.
MORGAN: Strange feeling, isn't it?
BROWN: Yes, a little bit yes. A little bit.. but once again, I have a wonderful family. I have a job to do and I've moved on. And if I can help anybody who's in similar circumstances to fight back, and then also move forward with their lives and tell somebody -- you know, my mistake, if there was one, is that I didn't like tell my mom or somebody at the camp in retrospect.
But once you're past that, and you keep moving on and on and on, it -- you obviously focus on different things. You just move on with life. So --
MORGAN: The sexual abuse is one thing, and obviously pretty scarring for you. But there's also sustained physical abuse with all these guys that came away --
BROWN: Two -- two --there were two stepfathers.
MORGAN: And how bad was that?
BROWN: It was -- well, obviously you read the book --
BROWN: -- it was -- it was -- it was intense. I remember when I was just six years old, I remember waking up and my mom was screaming and my stepfather was hitting her. And I came to her rescue. I was in my pajamas and I remember, you know, going and grabbing his leg and biting it on the inside, and, you know, him just you know, coming down and pummeling me and pushing me away. And then I just got right back.
And fortunately we lived in a duplex and the people up stairs heard and called the police. So, that was obviously husband number two and then husband number four. It was -- it was a constant battle.
MORGAN: Physical battle.
BROWN: Yes. Yes. Physical, mental. You could tell when --
MORGAN: He punching you?
BROWN: Yes, yes, we'd be kind of banging on each other. It got to a point when I was older and getting, as you just pointed out about your sons -- you get physically aware and more confident physically. You know, finally said, you do this again and, you know, we're going to have to deal with it. So --
MORGAN: I mean, coupled with the abuse that was going on was the fact you had no money, the family. It was always a struggle. And there comes this pivotal moment, I think, in your life, read in the book, where you are arrested for shop lifting. And the judge, I think, is very smart, isn't he?
MORGAN: Tell me again what he does?
BROWN: Well, it was Judge Zolf (ph) from Salem. He was -- his first year on the bench. And he took me in the chambers. They don't do these days. And he said, Scott, do you -- what do you do? You like music obviously because I was stealing records. You need to explain what records are, I guess.
CDs, small -- bigger CDs. And he said, you know, your brothers and sisters, I see you like sports. What do you like to do?
I said I play basketball. He said you good? I said yes, I'm very good. And he says well, you know, do you have brothers and sisters look up to you? They care for you? They love you? I said yes, they do.
He says how do you think they would like to see you play basketball in jail, because that's where you're going. And I want you to write me a 1,500 word essay on that very subject: how I've let my brothers and sisters down and how -- how they would never love to see me play basketball --
MORGAN: That's a remarkable thing for a judge to do, I think.
BROWN: It was unbelievable. I mean, but listen, I'll be very straight. But not for Judge Zolf, who right now is battling cancer -- and I just was with him three weeks ago -- I wouldn't' be here talking to you. There's no doubt in my mind. I was going down a path where finally somebody just took an interest in me, basically, and said it's time. It's time to cut it out, young man. And that's it.
MORGAN: It would have been easy for you to wallow in self-pity given what you'd been through. I didn't get any sense of that from the book.
BROWN: Well, my mother taught me to be a fighter, you know, while we battle. You know, I'm probably not unlike any teenage boys, we battled. But one thing she never -- she instilled in both me and my sister is to be a fighter and never to give up.
MORGAN: How much do you blame your father who disappeared when you were one and pretty much that was the last you --
BROWN: Before I was 22, I blamed everybody. I was angry at everybody. But once we -- you read in the book. When I had that Cosmo and I said hey, dad, you're either in my life or out of my life. And a lot of the things that have happened to me as I've gotten older and more confident in myself and my own personal beliefs and feelings, I'm able to confront those kinds of challenges.
And some, you know, obviously have taken longer than others. But for the last 30 years, we've been building and building and building. We have a very positive relationship. And I'm so thankful and --
MORGAN: Do you think he regrets what he did?
BROWN: He -- we were out about three weeks ago, went to breakfast and he said -- he looked me right in the eye and he said you know, I just want to say I'm sorry. You know, I'm sorry. I wish I had known. I wish I had been there.
And just to have your dad, after 51 years, you know, come up and say, you know, I'm sorry for everything, it was like great. Let's go have a nice hot chocolate. I'm ready. I'm good. I'm good. You know, I'm OK. And he's OK. And that's --that's -- how many families can actually say they're OK and that they're moving forward?
MORGAN: But I can see in you now that that makes you emotional, doesn't it?
BROWN: Yes, Yes. I'm not going to cry.
MORGAN: No, but I can see why you might, because your father doing that for all this time, after all you've been through. That's a pretty tough thing.
BROWN: Yes. It was -- it was tough but good.
MORGAN: Is he proud of you now, do you think?
BROWN: Yes. Yes. They're both proud of me.
MORGAN: Because I mean, it's an extraordinary story. Because you then come through all this and you end up winning the seat of Massachusetts after Teddy Kennedy dies. You come in, and you're the first Republican since the early '70s and you storm to victory.
I mean, what a moment for you.
BROWN: And they were there with me. They were -- they -- they got sign holders. They raised money. They got signatures. They were there on election night. And in the book, as you noticed, I looked around and I saw everybody there, I'm like oh my gosh.
MORGAN: Just going to see a bit of your (inaudible).
BROWN: Yes, right there, there's my dad right behind. There's my dad.
MORGAN: There's dad on the right.
BROWN: Yes. And that's my wife right there and Ayla's (ph) on the right and my -- and my other daughter Aryana (ph) on the left there.
MORGAN: Was your mom there as well?
BROWN: Yes, mom's right next to Aryana (ph) absolutely.
MORGAN: All these people --
BROWN: My nephew. Yes. My brother in law, so -- my sister just popped her head in so everybody was right there. And I looked around. And it's in the book, I looked around and said oh my gosh, we're together. We've -- it's the first time in our lives that we've all been together and we're all happy.
I said wow, we're going to build on this and we've done exactly that. It's been really good.
We're going to take one more break. And when we come back, I want to show you a picture which I think will bring back most amusing memories for you.
BROWN: Does it have your head on it?
MORGAN: I wish it did.
BROWN: Oh my God. I haven't seen that in about -- in about 24 hours.
MORGAN: Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown is back with me.
It's been a very emotional 20 minutes, hasn't it?
BROWN: Yes. You almost had me. Nice try. MORGAN: I'm curious as to -- you know, it's this -- when you said it's cathartic, is it also releasing in your emotions you never thought maybe you had.
BROWN: Yes. I'm not a big crying guy except for when it comes to the kids. You know, obviously I think like you, we really love our children. And I try to keep -- I've built up certainly walls around my emotions over the years. I think like anybody who had had similar or different circumstances.
MORGAN: I'm going to try and bring a different emotion to you now, to show you probably for the millionth time in your political career this memorable image of you as a "Cosmopolitan" centerfold. There you are in all your glory.
When you look at that picture, you were 22. You were a student and you did this what, just to earn a few --
BROWN: Pay for law school. Yes. It paid for law school.
MORGAN: And you actually became America's Sexiest Man Alive.
BROWN: Whatever that means.
MORGAN: What does that mean?
BROWN: It meant nothing. Really. It was --
MORGAN: Tell me, you're a 22-year-old guy --
BROWN: I was 22. I went from --
MORGAN: -- and you're telling me that meant nothing. That must have been the greatest --
BROWN: It was a lot -- it was a lot of fun.
MORGAN: -- pulling machine mechanism you could ever have come up with.
BROWN: It was a lot of fun. But I treated it solely as a business, really, a way to pay for law school. I wanted to be a lawyer and I had no way to pay for the next -- next year of school. And this came out of the blue and here we are.
MORGAN: Tell me about your ambitions now, because I'm looking at you thinking -- I read this book and I was thinking you're just the kind of Republican who could come out of nowhere, just as you did in Massachusetts, and fill the void which I think exists in that party, where you have the Tea Party and you have Sarah Palin, but they're a little bit too extreme probably for many of the core vote, and you have the kind of moderate types that are just a little bit dull. One thing you're not is dull.
So you could be a dark horse, couldn't you?
BROWN: For what?
MORGAN: You know what I'm asking you.
BROWN: Yeah, I know --
MORGAN: It must have crossed your mind.
BROWN: I'm running for re-election. I've said that. I'm already campaigning on that. Bottom line is --.
MORGAN: Could you be tempted to run for president?
BROWN: No. No. Not -- I'm running for re-election. And while the book is nice, certainly, and I'm glad people are enjoying it, I have a lot of work to do. When I look at various bills -- I want to make sure that they don't increase taxes, that they're good for Massachusetts, they don't increase the deficit, they create jobs, and they're good for the country.
I'm looking at each and every bill keeping an open mind, trying to work across party lines whenever I can to move our country forward. I mean I think we need more people to do that because we're in deep trouble.
MORGAN: What do -- what do you make of what's happening in the Middle East in the context of America?
BROWN: Well, I'm hopeful because people are obviously seeking freedom and democracy. But I'm deeply concerned about the voids that potentially could be left in the event that these leaders leave and then there's total chaos and anarchy potentially.
MORGAN: But do you think that America, obviously in places like Iraq and Afghanistan, has tried to instill democratic freedom through force and through military intervention? When you see what's going on in the Middle East, where it's happening in an evolutionary way, through the grass roots or the people themselves, isn't it a better way for America to go in the future?
BROWN: Well, I think every -- every situation, you have to take it on its own merits. I mean, when we dealt with Afghanistan, I mean, the whole goal is to -- is to make sure that the Taliban and al Qaeda don't, you know, kind of marry up again and export terrorism around the region and the world, and potentially move on Pakistan who, as you know, has nuclear weapons.
I don't think any country wants to go into a war. I mean, your country was right there with us in all the wars that we've had dealing with those situations. Is it better to do it peacefully? Absolutely.
MORGAN: You are a national guardsman.
BROWN: I'm a lieutenant colonel. Been serving 31 years.
MORGAN: So you've got a lot of experience in this.
BROWN: I am experienced. I'm certainly - I'm a cog in the wheel, I do my job and go where I'm told.
MORGAN: So you must talk to lots of guys who are serving.
BROWN: Well, I'm on the Armed Services Committee, Homeland Security and Veterans. So yes, I obviously participate in all the briefings. I've been to Afghanistan and...
MORGAN: Do many of them, if you're honest, think that the war in Iraq was a good idea?
BROWN: In Iraq? Yes. In Iraq, yes, absolutely. It's easy to go hindsight and try to figure out what would have been or could have been, but the fact that we ultimately did make the decision, I think, you know, your country and our country should be very proud as to what our men and women did.
MORGAN: Senator, it's been fascinating talking to you.
BROWN: That's it?
MORGAN: That's it. Though you can come back when you're ready to announce you're running for president. How about that?
BROWN: OK, whatever.
BROWN: Good to see you, meet you finally.
BROWN: Thank you.
MORGAN: That's it for tonight, and now here's my colleague Anderson Cooper with "AC 360."