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Interview with Kevin Bacon; 'Men of a Certain Age'

Aired June 10, 2011 - 21:00   ET



PIERS MORGAN, HOST: Only one man could play everything from the hero of "Footloose" to the super villain of "X-Men: First Class."


KEVIN BACON, ACTOR: Hey, Piers. It's me.


MORGAN: Kevin Bacon is an actor's actor, with more than 50 films to his credit. Everybody knows somebody who's worked with him. And tonight, I challenge him to a round of six degrees of Kevin Bacon.


BACON: Piers, I am Kevin Bacon. I can't lose.


MORGAN: Well, it's my show, mate. So, we'll see, won't we?

And the stars of what some call "Sex and the City" for men.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is going to be a nightmare. I knew we should have done "The View."



MORGAN: Ray Romano, Andre Braugher, and Scott Bakula. They really are "Men of a Certain Age."




MORGAN: If you've seen more than a handful of Hollywood movies in the '80s, then, you'll already know who my next guest is. Kevin Bacon has starred in 50 films and the latest is this summer's blockbuster, "X-Men: First Class." And Kevin joins me now.

Congratulations --


MORGAN: --on X-Men, smash hit as they have all been. Matthew Vaughn who was the -- involved with it very closely is a friend of mine, and it's -- I think it's an amazing extension to the franchise. How did you find it?

BACON: He just crushed it, Matthew. He really did. I thought it was really, really well done. You know, it's one of those ones where you sit down and he showed me a couple of scenes but there was so much of the movie that I didn't really know about, you know, either I wasn't in it or was effects driven. So, it was a real surprise to me and I -- I was -- I was thrilled. I got chills.

MORGAN: We're going to play a little clip from it now which is you in the X-Men.


BACON: Good evening. My name is Sebastian Shaw and I'm not here to hurt you. Friends, there is a revolution coming when mankind discovers who you are, what we can do. Each of us will face a choice, be enslaved or rise up to rule. Choose freely but know that if you are not with us, then, by definition, you are against us.

So, you can stay, fight for the people who hate and fear you, or you can join me and live like kings and queens.


MORGAN: There's a lot of great young talent in this film.

BACON: Absolutely.

MORGAN: No, really, there's -- there's Jennifer Lawrence, There's Zoe Kravitz, there's Nicholas Hoult, January Jones, James McAvoy. You are the grand-dad, Kevin.

BACON: Every morning they would gather around at my feet and I would take questions.

No, you know, I -- it was really fun working with them. It was very energizing. They were great, not only an extremely talented bunch of young actors but also a lot of fun and -- and really run to hang out with.

MORGAN: You -- you came up with this great quote saying about -- about career changes in the movies, doing something outside your wheelhouse is what keeps you alive as a creative person. And this is definitely outside your normal wheelhouse, I would say.

BACON: Well, I've never played a billionaire mutant before if that's what you mean. This is my first one. MORGAN: Did you enjoy it?

BACON: I did, yes. It was great. It was great.

I mean, certainly the idea of having a power, you know, is fantastic. But the thing that I -- I really enjoyed, and the thing about the X-Men franchise in general, is that all of these characters, without their mutations, are very, very human. So, in order to approach it, I really had to approach it in terms of who the man was, not who the -- who the mutant was.

MORGAN: You play a billionaire megalomaniac. I mean, I would argue that almost every billionaire I've met is a megalomaniac.

Have you ever met one who isn't?

BACON: No. But there haven't been a lot of them, actually. I've met a couple I guess. Let's see, yes, maybe a couple.

You know, I think that one of the keys that I found when I did the research back in the Marvel comic books because, luckily, they give you stacks and stacks, they give you everything that was ever written about your guy, ever, is that he's very much a self-made man and he's very -- he's very like American, this guy.

You know, he really is a product of the American dream. And then, you add to that this insane desire for power, he wants his power to have power, and he wants his money to have money, and that's -- that's who he is.

MORGAN: If you had your time again, given you've been exposed to all of these things over time, would you prefer to be rich, famous, or powerful? Forget the acting for a moment.

BACON: Well, now when you say powerful, what do you mean by that?

MORGAN: Well as in somebody who's not necessarily in the entertainment game, he's not famous as a celebrity but has real power.

BACON: I would say that probably a big part of what drove me into this -- drove me into it initially was fame.

MORGAN: You're very unusual. I think 95 percent of all the actors I've had in front of me have completely lied when I've asked them about that.

BACON: And they say they don't want any of it?

MORGAN: Well, they go like and hang on about how awful fame is and they moan away about it all.

BACON: I completely disagree.

MORGAN: But, I've seen you beyond this a few times saying, you know what -- everybody wants to be famous, right? BACON: Well, yes. Not everybody, but I think most actors do. I think actors want to be famous and the other thing that people never say about fame is that fame is 95 percent good. Like, all day long, people are pretty nice to me, you know, they say how you doing or, you know, people will come up -- on my way into your studio tonight, a very nice lady stopped and said, "I love you."

How often does that happen? Just all day long.

MORGAN: It doesn't happen to me very often, I can tell you know.

BACON: Well, you know --

MORGAN: So, but it -- it is true, isn't it? I think people do -- I just never experienced it. I would say 98 percent of the people that come up to you are just very friendly.

BACON: It's also an acknowledgement that what you're doing is, you know, working and that's what I -- you know, from the time I was a little kid, I just worked, worked as hard as I could to get here. So, I'm not going to get out here now and go, oh, please, I don't want to be famous.

MORGAN: You were described to me as the -- one of the best actors who's never yet won an Oscar, and you, yourself, have described the Oscar season as the bitter season.


BACON: It's been one of those quotes that I really should take back.

MORGAN: I think it's a great quote.

BACON: If you can go back and take them back.

MORGAN: But I like it because I think it's honest. It's exactly how I would be feeling, if I had made 50 films of the quality you have and I still haven't had my moment, seeing some of the clowns that walk away with those gardens (ph) -- I mean, it's going to get to you, isn't it?

BACON: Here's the thing -- I mean, I don't act for statues. I really don't. The great thing about winning an award is that it creates opportunities.

There are two things that create opportunities. One is being involved with something that makes money and the other is winning awards. And the reason that winning the awards creates the opportunities is because it gives the people who are selling the picture the opportunity to make more money.


BACON: So, in that way, it would be nice. MORGAN: But, in the same way that most actors -- we're both agreed on this -- like the fame that comes from their job, isn't the statue the ultimate kind of validation of your art? Isn't that the moment? Don't you sit there at night sometimes on your own with a glass of wine thinking about what you would say if they announced the words, "Best Actor, Kevin Bacon"? Be honest.

BACON: I'll let you know when I get there.


BACON: I mean, I -- I don't know if it is. I won't know until I get there. It certainly would be better than not having one -- but, you know, I don't know.

MORGAN: Talking of vain, glorious, billionaire megalomaniacs, you had a very bad experience with a real one, Bernie Madoff. You and your wife lost a lot of money. What are your feelings about him? There's obviously a movie that is now being planned starring Robert De Niro. You may be in this, I'm hearing.

Was that a joke?

BACON: I was kidding. I was so kidding about that.

MORGAN: That was a big tip.

BACON: This was -- I mean -- the fact that anyone would have taken that as a serious comment, I --

MORGAN: You certainly bring up a raw visceral reality to this.

BACON: -- well, first off it would be hard to write that scene since I never met him so I don't know how the scene would -- would play out in the film. But I was just kidding about that. I don't want to --

MORGAN: How did you get caught -- how did you get caught up in the whole Madoff thing?

BACON: You know, it was recommended that we -- we put, you know, some money with him and we did.

MORGAN: Have you said how much?

BACON: No. But see? The how much is a little different because the how much, which was what you thought it was at the time when it all disappeared, but that didn't really exist, right? That was just --

MORGAN: It was never real money.

BACON: -- it was never real money. Yes.

MORGAN: I mean, at the absolute peak of your time with Madoff, how much did you think you had? BACON: I'd rather not say. It was a lot -- it was a lot of dough.

MORGAN: Millions of dollars.

BACON: Yes. It was most -- it was most of our money. I mean, it was most of our savings, you know, our retirement.

MORGAN: Without giving the amount, what was the percentage of -- of your wealth that was committed to this?

BACON: Wow, that's a good question. I don't know. I'd sort of have to think about that because, you know, we had -- we had other stuff. You know, we had an apartment to live in and stuff like that. I mean, the thing is, is that --

MORGAN: In terms of cash, it was most of it.

BACON: Yes, most of it.

MORGAN: I mean, this is horrendous, isn't it?

BACON: It wasn't good. But, you know, we looked at each other and we said, we can get through this together, and, luckily, my wife was on a very successful television show at the time. So, that was a big, big help. And --

MORGAN: What was the moment you knew that this was all going belly up?

BACON: Got a call, you know. She called me or I called her and, you know, it was like, wow, there it goes. Whoa!

MORGAN: I mean, literally, out the window.


MORGAN: The whole thing was a scam.


MORGAN: Did you get any money back at all?

BACON: Yes. Well, so far we -- we have gotten the -- there was that at the time they called the SIPC, so we got that money back. But, you know, they're saying that -- that they may be, you know, paying more back. So, we'll see.

MORGAN: In terms of a life realignment -- what did it do to you and your wife and as a family do you think, in terms of how you now look at life?

BACON: Well, I think that it's a good way to think about what you have to be grateful for. That's a very important part of it. Because when you turn around and you go, you know it's a cliche, but you go, wow, you know, we're healthy and my family's healthy and we can still work.

And there's a lot of people both in that situation and in other situations who are a hell of a lot worse off than we are. So, I'd say, if anything else, it's, you know, it's gratitude.

MORGAN: I've been looking at a few pictures of you and your wife here. I mean, you -- you've done well, haven't you?

BACON: Yes, she's a knockout.

MORGAN: I mean, is that -- is that a great comfort to you when all of this was unraveling, the fact that if you actually were left with nothing, you have this amazing wife that you've been with for so long.

BACON: So, we weren't left with nothing, that's the thing. We had everything.

MORGAN: The real value of life, actually, probably isn't in dollars.

BACON: It's not. It's just not. I mean, it's -- again, it's, you've heard it a million times but, you know, you can't take it with you.

MORGAN: We're going to take a short break. When we come back I want to talk to you more about fame and celebrity and also about your wife -- because usually in Hollywood, although you might contest this, you've had this incredibly strong marriage when so many have fallen apart.




BACON: Time stands still here like a snake, sunning itself on the road.


BACON: Yes, Clay. I met him sometime in June of '62, the Masquerade Bar. Dave Ferrie took me there for the express reason to meet him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sexual purposes?

BACON: Well, yes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did he pay you for this?

BACON: Twenty dollars each time. Hell, it ain't no secret. That's what I'm in here for.

(END VIDEO CLIP) MORGAN: That's Kevin Bacon in Oliver Stone's "JFK."

A little bit of fact, that was the first sighting of the Simon Cowell haircut. I hardly realized it until I saw that clip again. That's where he got it from.

BACON: All I needed was the V-neck T-shirt.


MORGAN: That movie was pivotal, really, I think to the second phase of your career because after "Footloose," things dried up, weirdly, for a while. And then after "JFK," it boomed back up again.

What was Hollywood like when you go through the dry out process?

BACON: Well, it's tough. I think that the thing that's always been clear to me is that I was in it for the long haul, right? So, it's like it's -- as bad as it ever got, I never thought, well, I've got to do something else, you know? And --

MORGAN: How bad is it when it goes bad? When you've tasted some real glory?

BACON: Well, you know, there's -- there's a great line in a -- that Martin Short has in a movie that we're doing -- he plays my agent and things aren't -- I'm a -- I'm a director in the movie and things aren't going well and his -- his character says, "Well, frankly everyone wants to distance themselves from the stench."


BACON: And that's kind of what it -- that's what it sort of feels like because, you know, you -- people, as we were talking about before, really want to be attached to whatever is successful and I think they're really desperately afraid that a lack of success will somehow rub off on them.

So, yes, so, it's -- it's not pleasant. But, you know, every kind of career, every kind of career I think has peaks and valleys.

MORGAN: They do, but I don't think many have quite the brutality and that -- that thing of not being near the stench is so true about Hollywood, I think, is that it's if you're hot everybody loves you.

BACON: Right.

MORGAN: But, with this town in particular, it's interesting, you made this big decision early on -- having gone to New York when you were 17. You made this decision, do I go and immerse myself in L.A., in the world where everyone here is in the same game and you quite deliberately went, no, I'm not going to -- even though you realized it may damage your career in certain ways.

BACON: Right.

MORGAN: You were just determined not to live in this.

BACON: Yes, because for a couple of things -- I mean, you -- you've got to say, well that -- isn't that so noble and New Yorky of you. But, you know, I'm kind of sick of that idea.

I think it's a lot of it was just fear, you know? I mean, just afraid of every day being so connected to something that I was so personally invested in and I felt like I really needed to get a little bit of distance by -- by growing up in New York, which I love New York and I wanted to raise my kids in New York.

MORGAN: Kevin, I want to talk to you about the Kevin Bacon phenomenon as it's now being called, where basically everyone in Hollywood is six degrees away from Kevin Bacon and I'm going to show you how we know this is true.


MORGAN: Because we have worked out that I am six degrees from Kevin Bacon.

BACON: Only six?

MORGAN: Yes, it's six degrees. But, you are only five degrees away from me and we're going to show you how this works.

BACON: It's interesting.

MORGAN: Yes, so let's -- let's get the first bit of evidence. This is me and you.


MORGAN: So, here, we have Sharon Osbourne, who I work with on "America's Got Talent." She, in turn, works with Leah Remini on "The Talk." Leah is best friends with Jennifer Lopez, who starred with George Clooney in "Out of Sight," who worked with Brad Pitt on "Oceans 11," who was in "Sleepers" with Kevin Bacon.

How about that?

BACON: Fascinating.


BACON: Hard-hitting journalism.

MORGAN: But, there's a better one than this. This is the five degrees of separation which is from you to me.


MORGAN: So, we start on this one with Kevin Bacon on the left. You're in "X-Men" with Zoe Kravitz, whose father is Lenny Kravitz, who starred in "Precious" with Mariah Carrey, who is married to Nick Cannon, who is the host of "America's Got Talent" on which I am a judge.

So, we are even closer than you think. There's five away there.

BACON: There you go.

MORGAN: Do you take any of this kind of nonsense remotely seriously.

BACON: Well, I do take it fairly seriously now because I started something called, which is a charitable Web site. And the idea was kind of to take this brand and I wasn't able to figure out a way that I could get rich on it.

So, I figured that maybe there was a -- I mean, my concept was that if you really take me out of it and, of course, the idea of this connectivity existed before they ever came up with the Kevin Bacon part of it, and you take me out it, it's sort of a beautiful idea that we all really are connected on this planet, and that we all, basically, climbed out of the same swamp, and that if you kind of keep that in mind as you go through your day, that maybe you'll be less likely to, you know, wage war or pollute this planet or whatever.

MORGAN: Do you think it works?

BACON: That idea?

MORGAN: Well, the charitable way that you've done this. Do you see evidence that it works?

BACON: Well, yes.

MORGAN: When you make people think like that?

BACON: Well, I mean, I think that we have a long way to go in terms of our specific site. I think that, again and again and again, I do see this idea becoming -- we just -- we are getting more and more global. I mean, that's just -- just the way it is, and I think that the connectivity between people, especially when you look at the Internet and -- and really, you know, social network and social media is all about connectivity, right? That's what it is.

And we -- I think that we have to kind of embrace that because that's -- that's where we're going.

MORGAN: We're going on a short break again. I want to come back to you and talk to you what I was going to talk about in that segment which is about your marriage, because I am fascinated about your views on how you keep a marriage successful in a business that is so ruinous for the genre.



(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) BACON: "Tremors," "Footloose," "Wild Things" -- what do these movies have in common? Kevin Bacon. And for just $20 a month, you can own all these classic films by joining the Kevin Bacon Movie Club. Every 30 days, you'll receive a new Kevin Bacon film, complete with a signed movie poster and certificate of authenticity.

And, best of all, Kevin Bacon will personally deliver it right to your doorstep.


BACON: Pretty cool, right?


BACON: Let's do it.


MORGAN: That was Kevin Bacon on "Funny Or Die." Kevin is back with me now.

You and your wife, Kyra, have been together 22 years and you memorably said, "The secret of this is you've got to keep the fights clean and the sex dirty."

BACON: Another thing I never should have said, one of those ones --


MORGAN: But you should have said this. It's a great line.

BACON: It comes back to bite you every time.

MORGAN: Yes, but does it -- I mean, isn't it a great -- isn't it so true? That line there?

BACON: Yes, I mean I think it kind of is, you know? I tell you, honestly, people ask a lot about how that -- how we keep it together. And, you know, I mean, I -- I sort of thought well maybe I can just come up with one line that I can constantly use rather than to try and desperately to, you know, try to, you know, describe it time and time again.

MORGAN: How did you meet?

BACON: Well, the truth is, is that I was doing a play down in the Village in -- a real long time ago, and I had a matinee and an evening performance and during -- after the matinee, I went to the deli and I was buying a sandwich. And like a 12-year-old girl came up to me and said, "Excuse me, Mister, I just saw your play, I thought you were really good." And, I was like, "Oh, yes, thanks, sweetheart" -- bought my sandwich and left.

And that was her. I don't remember it, but she does. MORGAN: What -- and how did you then get together?

BACON: Well, then, years later --

MORGAN: Years later?

BACON: Yes. Many, many years later.

MORGAN: So you had this amazing little meeting that you don't remember --

BACON: That I don't remember but she does. Yes, I mean, she was 12. Yes.

And then, probably it was maybe 10 years later or something like that, we met doing a play. It was a play that we filmed for PBS called "Lemon Sky."

MORGAN: And? Come on, how did you --

BACON: Well, you know, I fell in love with her. I had spotted her around Manhattan, you know, since then, and I just found her, you know, really very beautiful and sexy and aloof. And I was, you know, just immediately in love with her and she was immediately put off by me.


MORGAN: But has she said she harbored some weird thought about you since that deli moment?

BACON: No. I think she always -- well, you know, her mother was a big theater fan and her mother had seen me in a couple of plays because I was doing a lot of theater back there, back in New York back there. And, you know, her mother would say, you need to watch this actor, he's a good actor.

By the time we met, you know, I had done a lot of movies already and -- and was pretty well known, and she, you know, she -- I don't think she really liked me all that much, either as a person or as an actor, but I -- I just chipped away at it, man, you know, I was just -- I was -- I was knocking on that door and I was --

MORGAN: Did you know she was the one?

BACON: Yes. I did.

MORGAN: And you were right. I mean, you've been inseparable ever since.

BACON: I was right.

MORGAN: What is -- what is the reason why so many show business marriages flounder, do you think?

BACON: Well, I'd never actually seen the statistics that there's any more divorce in show business than there is in any other thing.

MORGAN: Well, there seems to be more.

BACON: It seems to be more because you read about it, but I don't -- I don't know if that's actually true. I'd love to know if anybody out there knows the answer to that, because, you know, I mean, dentists and lawyers and people are getting divorced all the time, you know? Marriage is -- marriage is tough. It just doesn't work for a lot of people.

MORGAN: I would say the one thing that's different about those professions to show business is that in show business, there's so much temptation, which comes not from your natural attraction but from your fame. It's that that's different.

How have you managed to resist the lure of the groupie, for lack of a better phrase?

BACON: Well, I mean, I don't -- I don't know. I mean, I feel like, you know, I made a commitment to this person and we enjoy spending time together, and I don't want to do anything that's going to, you know, threaten that. I mean, you could ask her the same question. You know, how she managed to avoid it.

MORGAN: Yes, because you are (INAUDIBLE). No disrespect.

BACON: Thank you. No, no, you're absolutely right and, believe me, I'm very grateful for that every day.

MORGAN: How would you feel if your kids wanted to get into the business?

BACON: Well, you know, it's weird. We were really so negative about it when they were younger that neither one of them are interested and they're pretty much on their way to doing what -- what it is that they want to do at this point.

It's kind of weird that we were, in retrospect. I mean, I think for both of us we were afraid of subjecting our children to a lifetime of scrutiny and rejection. And we were talking before about how, you know, to be an actor, you've got to really have a really tough skin, because it's really -- it's like if you paint a painting and you put it up there, people will judge your painting and they'll say I don't like that.

But when you're an actor, it's like you. It's your face. It's everything.

MORGAN: It's the way you look. It's the way you talk. It's the way you move. It's everything. It's so personal.

BACON: It's so personal that I don't think we really wanted to put our kids through that. You know?

MORGAN: I've heard you don't ever watch your films.

BACON: I don't. I mean, I watch them once when they come out. But --

MORGAN: You never rewatch an old movie?



BACON: Just there's so much that I feel like I wish I'd done differently that it's kind of like torture.

MORGAN: Really?

BACON: Yeah.

MORGAN: You're such a perfectionist that you just see so many things you wish you'd done in a different way?

BACON: Yeah.

MORGAN: And it's just too much agony, you can't watch it?

BACON: Yeah. And also, I describe to people that seeing yourself on camera is like the time when you leave the first outgoing message on your voicemail and you listen back to it and you go, oh, my God; is that what I sound like? Oh, give me a gun and I'll shoot myself in the head right now.

So you multiply that by like a thousand. And that's what it's like to be 40 foot high on a screen. And everything about your voice and the way you look, and you know, your hair and your body, the whole package is -- it's just really -- it's really tough.

It's really tough to see. So I've gotten numb to it after so many movies, you know. But I'd like to have the experience once, because I like to know what it is that I did. And then I like to start thinking about the next one.

MORGAN: What is the one Kevin Bacon movie, if I forced you to watch again at gunpoint, you would watch?

BACON: Oh. The one movie that I would watch again? I don't know, man. I did a movie called "Murder In the First," you know, sometime ago. That one came out pretty good.

MORGAN: There's a lot of buzz about a new movie you've done. It's called "Crazy Stupid Love" with Steve Carell and Julianne Moore, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. Tell me about that quickly.

BACON: Great fun comedy. I have a very small part, but it was a fun part. It's one of those parts where I'm there, but then I'm mentioned a lot.

MORGAN: Is that the dream role for you?

BACON: Yeah.

MORGAN: Because then you're just there, but no one's going to critique you.

BACON: They just talk about me.

MORGAN: Kevin Bacon, thank you very much.

BACON: Thanks, man.

MORGAN: And congrats for "X-Men." I look forward to seeing it.

Coming up, the men in the series being called "Sex and the City" for guys: Ray Romano, Andre Braugher, and Scott Bakula, "Men of A Certain Age."


MORGAN: "Men of A Certain Age" is the series that opens a window onto the secret lives of, well, middle-aged men, and rather hilariously. I've got the stars here with me now, Ray Romano, Andre Braugher, and Scott Bakula. Now, nothing, I don't think, could tell the story more of our collective descent into middle age other than to reveal to viewers that for the last ten minutes, we have been sitting here talking about golf.

RAY ROMANO, "MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE": Trying to remember --

MORGAN: We've got amnesia. We're talking about golf. It's the classic signs --

ROMANO: Ogilvy.


MORGAN: We're trying to remember the name of an American golfer who lost weight, lost his game, put the weight back on, got his game back. And every woman watching right now is about to tune out. I mean, literally. Literally, our producer's saying is it Calcavecchia?

ROMANO: No, because every woman wants to know how did he lose the weight? So they're listening.

MORGAN: Tell me about the fact that you've become these poster boys for middle age. I mean, is it what you dreamed of when you were kids? One day I'll be a middle-aged icon?

ROMANO: Well, you don't -- you're not happy you're middle-aged until, I guess, you're middle-aged because what other choice do you have?

MORGAN: Well, exactly. There's an inevitability about it. It's a weird place you all find yourself in. You march down the road and rather than young groupies charging after you, there's guys of 50 going, "hey, way to go, boys. You're our kind of guys."

SCOTT BAKULA, "MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE": Yeah, you get that all the time, guys coming up saying thanks for putting on a show that we can watch. We love your show. It's great. ROMANO: It's just it's on to late. Can you get it on earlier.

MORGAN: For you, Ray, when you obviously have an iconic comedy role in the way that you've had, what's it been like for you making this transformation to something not quite as --

ROMANO: By the way, I appreciate that you recognize the comedy in it. But we -- it's a drama as well.


ROMANO: And you know, we do -- the comedy is more real.

MORGAN: Let's watch a brief clip from the show. For those who haven't seen it, give them a little insight.


BAKULA: One thing I will be getting for my birthday, colonoscopy.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's a terrible gift.

BAKULA: No, no, my doctor recommended his associate in Palm Springs. First I was like, no way, I'm not going to drive all that way for that. But he said no, that's the whole point of it. You make a fun thing out of it.

Like a five-star hotel, spa treatment. Yeah, you sneak in a colonoscopy. But you also have a little R&R, too. You know, takes the onus off of it.

ROMANO: Onus, anus.


MORGAN: I mean, be honest. Have any of you three discussed colonoscopies with your friends over a few beers?


MORGAN: Really?

ROMANO: Well, I got that idea because I saw on the -- either Letterman or whatever. Martin Short actually did that with Tom Hanks and Steve Martin. They didn't go away, but they played cards. They made a night of it. And then in the morning, they got a limo -- they played cards. They took the drink. They played cards all night. They did what they did in the bathroom.

And then in the morning, the limo came, took them to the colonoscopies. Went out to dinner. I said, well, that's got to be a show there. And I haven't talked about it with my friends, but I've talked, you know -- it's that time where you've got to think about it. MORGAN: Andre, I mean, you're younger than these guys.

ROMANO: Wait a minute.

MORGAN: I can see you bristling really at this whole idea that you're their age group. Am I right? Are you sort of resistant to be tagged with them here?

ANDRE BRAUGHER, "MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE": Well, you know, I mean, in my mind I'm not above, you know, five and twenty. And it sort of snuck up on me, this middle-aged idea.

MORGAN: What's the worst thing about getting middle-aged?

BRAUGHER: It's not bad at all. You know what I'm saying? I mean, the body is slowing down. But I think life is getting better and better.


BRAUGHER: Well, I think we really appreciate it. I think we understand what's important in life, you know. The sort of ambitions and the superficial thrills of youth are put in their place.

MORGAN: I liked all the superficial thrills of youth.

BRAUGHER: They were great when you're young. When you're young, they're great.

MORGAN: The worst thing about getting into your 40s and 50s, you have to awful a sudden stop having superficial thrills or people frown on you.

BRAUGHER: Well, there are more thrills to be gained. You know what I mean? So I just -- you know, there's a season for things. And the season has changed, and I'm really enjoying it.

MORGAN: Are you the same, Scott? Or do you see some negatives in the aging process?

BAKULA: Well, I don't -- I keep -- my biggest problem is I think that I'm still -- I'm not middle-aged and that I'm 20 years younger. I keep getting into trouble because I'm rushing out and doing things --

MORGAN: But isn't it a physical and mental thing? When you look in the mirror -- I don't know about you, but I still see a guy -- when people say to me, you're looking your age. I thought you were 55 or something like, that, I'm like, what? When I look in the mirror I don't see a guy of my age.

And I talk to my friends about it, and they're the same. You don't age as much in the mirror, do you?

ROMANO: Well, you mentally feel it. You know, I feel younger, and then I look. I'm like -- I'm trying to look in the mirror, but this old guy keeps getting in the way. You know what I mean? But I feel mentally -- emotionally I feel like I'm still, you know, as immature as I was.

So it's -- when I notice the thing and the wrinkles and whatever, it's so odd to me because I say, well, I'm still a kid, though. How am I old?

MORGAN: Andre talked about you learn about life more, so when you get to middle age, you can almost appreciate the reality of life. Would you agree with that, guys? Is that something -- do you learn enough that you start to appreciate what life really is?

BAKULA: Well, you get perspective. And I think you have two ways to go with that perspective. You can look back on your younger years and be regretful and I wish I was back there and I'd give anything to be doing that again. Or you can look back and acknowledge that and then -- you know, for me I'm -- I keep pointing forward.

I think the best thing that all of us can do is keep pointing forward. And you know, we've learned from a few mistakes here and there. But I'm trying to live each day as --

MORGAN: What's been the biggest mistake you've ever made?



BRAUGHER: Whoa, whoa.

ROMANO: Today.

BAKULA: Today. Today.

MORGAN: That you're prepared to admit to on national television.

BAKULA: That I'm prepared to admit to on national television. Ray?

BRAUGHER: I hope it's a good one because we could use a story idea.

BAKULA: Yeah. No, you know -- this sounds --

MORGAN: The thing you most regret.

BAKULA: I don't regret very much. Because I really spend a lot of my life trying to stay present and stay in the moment and --

MORGAN: Are you guys the same? Or do you have genuine look back and think, yeah, that was a deciding moment?

ROMANO: I regret things hour to hour, you know. That's just the way -- I always think I've made the wrong choice and this and that. But I can't -- at some point, I have to realize I did OK. You know? I mean, I'm hard on myself. But it's hard. You know, I want to like myself, but I just won't let me because that's what works.

MORGAN: Coming up, I'll ask the boys which woman they would take to a desert island.



ROMANO: This automatically she likes softball.

BRAUGHER: I don't know. Maybe.

ROMANO: You realize that's like saying that you're good at sports because you're black and we all know --

BRAUGHER: All right. I guess I just assumed. You know? Probably because of that lesbian baseball movie.

ROMANO: What are you talking about?

BRAUGHER: The one with all the women.

ROMANO: "League of Their Own"? They weren't lesbians. They were playing baseball because the men were off at war.



MORGAN: A hilarious scene from "Men Of a Certain Age." which stars Ray Romano, Andre Braugher, Scott Bakula. It had to get around to lesbians eventually, didn't it, your show? Kind of a classic middle-aged syndrome.

BAKULA: Sure. Sure. Why not? Why not?

MORGAN: When you were falling about laughing there watching your own show, which is always encouraging.


MORGAN: Like you say, it is a drama, but it's also very funny. And also I think it's also very accurate. When I hang out with all my mates at my age now, this is the kind of thing that we talk about. We talk about divorce, addiction, creative failure, child rearing, all the stuff that when you were 25, you never imagine in your wildest nightmares you're ever going to have to talk about.

And Andre, you're right. You kind of -- you quite like talking about it. You quite like this new stage of your life, right?

BRAUGHER: I do. I enjoy it. I guess I should --

ROMANO: Write what you know. BRAUGHER: Play what you know, you know. Yeah, the journey of a lifetime has sort of brought us here. And I have to say, you know, all of our -- you know, the things that happened to us, the creative fodder that we use in the show has, you know, just allowed us to illuminate the men who receive very little play, you know.

Oftentimes when I meet people, like you said, they're saying thanks for making a show about us, a show that we can relate to, a show that deals with concerns that are important to older men. So I feel like we arrived at this point through all this angst. We've arrived at this point where we can tell these stories faithfully, rather than older men being the butt of the joke.

MORGAN: If you could give advice to a 16-year-old Ray Romano, what would you tell him?

BRAUGHER: Oh lord.

MORGAN: All that you have learned now, what would you tell him as he set out on his adventure? You can't cop out and say whatever happens, happens.

ROMANO: A 16-year-old Ray Romano?


ROMANO: I would say don't kiss the redhead. It's just something personal. Boy, I guess, you know, I had a couple of patches when I was 16 and in my 20s where it got a little hairy emotionally. And I would just -- you know, when it's happening to you, you don't think there is an end in sight, you know. And it's kind of scary.

And so I would tell them, you know, it's going to be OK. But yeah, I had a couple of bumps in the road there.

MORGAN: What kind of thing?

ROMANO: Oh, I had in my 20s, I didn't know what I wanted to do, and my brother had just gotten married, and he moved out of the house. And my friends were all getting married. And I just felt isolated and alone. You know, I had like a mid-20s crisis. And I was living at home.

BRAUGHER: Only you.

BAKULA: Had one in the 30s too?

ROMANO: Yeah, I had like a very anxiety-ridden, and I had a little emotional struggle there for like a year or two in my 20s. You know, I didn't want to leave the house for a little bit. And it took a while to dig myself out of this. I wasn't going -- I quit school. I had no idea. Thank God stand-up comedy came along.

MORGAN: You're right. The kind of an emotional immaturity you have at that age, which allows you to be spontaneous and frivolous and all the things we talked about, the thrill seeking. Because you're immature, these things, when they go wrong, they feel horrendous at the time.

I look back on moments of my life, and I remember they seemed awful. Now I look back and laugh. It's like wait until you see real awful, mate. Scott, what would you say, if you were talking to a young Scott, what would you tell him?

BAKULA: Oh, a young Scott. I was just going to talk to young 16-year-olds in general and say wear a condom. But that's the best advice I could give a 16-year-old.

MORGAN: It's good advice.

BAKULA: First of all, 16-year-olds know way more -- they know so much more than I know. You know, and my 15 and a half year-old son is much smarter than me. And they're so bright, these kids today. You know, they don't listen.

MORGAN: Andre, what would you say to a young Andre? What were you like when you were young? You seem very calm and dignified, like mature now. You must have had some wild days?

BRAUGHER: I'm being quiet now.

BAKULA: That's quiet for old.

BRAUGHER: It's the same thing. You're going to make so many horrendous mistakes in the course of a lifetime. But it couldn't have been any different. It's all about perspective, I would say right now. You know, follow your heart. Choose the path. Choose the thing that makes you happy. It's really worked for me.

MORGAN: How important is it to find the right woman?

BRAUGHER: It's essential, I think. But again, none of them are right. They have to be --


BRAUGHER: I'm just saying --

ROMANO: Get yourself in trouble on this one.

MORGAN: Millions of women chucking their stilettos at the screen now.

ROMANO: Do you Twitter?

BRAUGHER: No, I do not Twitter.

ROMANO: You need to twitter apologies.


MORGAN: All I'm saying is you're going to change a million times between the day you say "I do" and wherever you are 20 years later. You know, you and Anna, you're not the same people. I mean, you have changed so many times. You have grown through so many --

ROMANO: But she has hated me throughout.

MORGAN: But she's -- I'm just saying that sticking with you and showing up, maybe it's too heavy or too serious about it. But sticking around and showing up, you know, for your life, your shared life is really the ultimate expression of love.

MORGAN: If you could choose one -- you haven't had any middle aged crises yet. I'm going to allow you one, a fictitious one.


MORGAN: Where you can flee everything to a desert island with one famous woman. Just one.

BRAUGHER: Ellen Barkin.

MORGAN: She would be a good one. Who would you say?

ROMANO: I would say from the past, or not even -- Sophia Loren.

MORGAN: She's still alive, you know that.

ROMANO: Even now. Even now. I'll take her now.

MORGAN: Scott?

Ellen Barkin and Sophia Loren.

BAKULA: They're already taken, right? Well, it can be any time. I'll go back.

MORGAN: Any of you going to go for the classic middle aged crisis?

BAKULA: I'll go for Marilyn Monroe. Can I take Marilyn?

MORGAN: None of you are going for the classic stereotypical middle aged crisis woman. I don't know, someone in their 20s.

ROMANO: Well, I'm assuming Megan Fox is the caretaker of the island.

BAKULA: She runs the drug store.

MORGAN: All right. You can have that. Scott, you haven't really come out with a name. You can't really have Marilyn. I think she's too --

BAKULA: Why did he get Sophia Loren?

MORGAN: She is still alive.

BAKULA: I'll go along with Ray. I'll go with Sophia Begara (ph). We'll go with her. MORGAN: That's a classic middle aged crisis.

ROMANO: I had a scene with her in a movie, a love scene with her in a movie.

MORGAN: Really?

ROMANO: It was movie that never came out.

MORGAN: Really?

ROMANO: But I watch it every night.

MORGAN: If I had a scene with her, I wouldn't care if it came out or not. Gentlemen, thank you very much indeed. Love the show. We're done. Thank you.

When we come back, a sneak preview of a blockbuster month on PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT, including my interview with one of the funniest men in television, Jimmy Fallon.


MORGAN: And that's it for us tonight. Be sure to be here Monday for the Republican presidential primary debate live from New Hampshire. That's Monday night, beginning at 8:00 eastern.

Coming up on PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT, the Republican candidate who is getting all the buzz at the moment, even though he says he is definitely not running, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.

Also coming up, the man who may be the funniest, and he is definitely the nicest guy in late night television, Jimmy Fallon. They're all coming up on PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT. Now here's Anderson Cooper with "AC 360."