Return to Transcripts main page


Schwarzenegger's Total Recall

Aired October 6, 2012 - 21:00   ET



ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER, FORMER GOVERNOR OF CALIFORNIA: What I've done is just about the stupidest thing that any human being can do.


PIERS MORGAN, HOST: Arnold. Think you've heard his whole story? Well, wait until you hear this.


SCHWARZENEGGER: I love Maria. She has been truly the only love that I've ever had.


MORGAN: Tonight, Arnold Schwarzenegger, intensely honest.


SCHWARZENEGGER: I say to myself, you totally screwed up, Arnold. You totally failed the family and have done all this stuff and caused all this pain.


MORGAN: A scandal far from the end of the story. This is the man who turned politics on its head as governor of California. What's his debate advice for President Obama and Mitt Romney?


SCHWARZENEGGER: You've got to be able to look right into the screen and to communicate with the people.


MORGAN: And what does Arnold Schwarzenegger want to hear from the candidates?


SCHWARZENEGGER: How are they going to bring both of the parties together and compromise rather than getting stuck in the ideological corners. (END VIDEO CLIP)


Good evening. Our "Big Story" tonight, D-Day. Debate Day is just 24 hours away. President Obama and Mitt Romney are deep into their final debate preparation as the clock ticks down for the big event in Denver. Meanwhile, their top surrogates are out on the campaign trail.

Paul Ryan speaking out for Romney in Iowa.


REP. PAUL RYAN (R), VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: A handful of states will determine this outcome. A handful of states will determine which way our country goes. So you not only have a huge responsibility, you have a tremendous opportunity.


MORGAN: Meanwhile, Michelle Obama has been stumping for her husband, the president, in Ohio.


MICHELLE OBAMA, FIRST LADY: This election will be even closer than the last one. That is the only guarantee. Understand that.


MORGAN: Against that backdrop I sat down with the man who shocked the political establishment when he was elected governor of one of the biggest states in the union, Arnold Schwarzenegger, has always been bigger than life. When it all came crashing down it happened in a very big way.

I first interviewed him in the early '90s. Since then he's had of course seen the end of his marriage to Maria Shriver and the end of his two terms as governor. He tells the story in graphic detail in his new book, "Total Recall." And Arnold Schwarzenegger joins me now.



MORGAN: I mean, try to imagine what it must have been like to be you for the last year. The reason imagine it is I saw you and Maria a few days before the balloon went up on this whole scandal, and you seemed very happy. I talked to both of you and I interviewed you many times over the years. And then since then, your whole life completely changed. I wouldn't use the phrase self-imploded but it must have felt like that a few times.

What has it been like to be you in the last year? SCHWARZENEGGER: Well, you know, I always have been very successful in my professional life. That's what the book is about, "Total Recall" is about this extraordinary immigrant's story, coming here with nothing and, you know, getting to the point where I am, you know, being successful in bodybuilding and being successful in films and being successful in the political arena.

And also at the same time, I had an extraordinary personal life. Everything was perfect. And so all of a sudden, from one day to the next, the personal life totally crashed and I wiped out everything, you know, that I had, and the thing that I cherished the most was my personal life, was my marriage, it was my family.

I always thought that it was one of my greatest accomplishments and then all of a sudden that was gone when all this became public with Mildred and Joseph and all that. And so now, you know, since that point, I've been struggling with that and it has been very tough, because even though my professional life and my career and everything has continued, and I have made enough movies and all that since then, and speeches and gotten very heavily involved in promoting the environment and so on, but you know nothing is the same anymore because, you know, my personal life has been, you know, destroyed.

And so now it -- destroyed because of stupidity, of bad decision making and, you know. this huge failure on my part and made a lot of people suffer because of that. And so all of that is always on my mind.

MORGAN: Have you been taken aback by the extremity of some of the reaction? People treating you almost like a sort of mass murderer, you know, how dare you commit this hideous crime, when actually you did what, you know, millions of men have done. I mean I'm not excusing it, defending it, anything. I'm just trying to put it into some kind of context, that at times, you've been so battered by this.

Have you felt -- have you felt it's been too much or not?

SCHWARZENEGGER: You know, I never tell the press what to write and what to say. I mean they do what they do, and I do what I do. And you know, I think that it is my doing. They didn't create this story. No one out there created the story. I created it. It's my doing. I did not ever experience the severity that you just explained, but then again, you like to be a little over the top.


That's OK.

MORGAN: And you're probably not reading half of it, right, I would imagine?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I would say I don't read any of it. No.

MORGAN: I've been through a divorce. I've been fired from a high- profile job back in Britain. So I've been through very difficult times in my life, and the old cliche you find out who your real friends are, I found to be completely true. That some people run for the hills on both occasions, others ran towards me to help when I least expected some of them to.

How have you found it? And who's been -- who's been the rocks, if you like, for you in this?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I think that there's a tremendous amount of people that have shown great support, and then there's a lot of people that have let me know that they're disappointed and it's perfectly fine, including my children that were disappointed in that action and inevitably my wife was very disappointed, and so, it's -- look, it's my -- it's my fault. There's no one else to blame for it.

I wouldn't even begin to start pointing the finger at anybody because the reality of it is that I created it, I created my career, and all those kind of things and the relationship in all of this, but I also screwed up badly and I take the full blame for it. And the key thing now is to kind of like, you know, figure out how do I build all this back and how do I gain the trust of the children again and have a good relationship with the kids, which is so important to me.

I love my kids dearly and I love Maria. I mean I love Maria. She has been truly the only love that I've ever had. And that's what is so pitiful about it. It's one thing if you have a situation like that and you said, I was ready to get out of this situation anyway, out of this marriage, but that's not the case. She was the most perfect wife and she was extraordinary.

MORGAN: You've hinted in some of the interviews you've given that you hope to get back with Maria. And in fact, you've gone a bit further and said, you believe from her side this may also be something that she may wish. Do you think there is a good chance you can get back together?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I cannot speak for Maria. She has to speak for herself. But I can only tell you that I hope that eventually we can rebuild the relationship and that we will be together as one family.

MORGAN: What people find most incomprehensible is that somebody as successful as you, somebody as rich as you, as politically motivated as you were at the time, would take such an extraordinary risk, but was it actually more complex? Was it that the risk you were taking seemed one of the safest risks you could take, that it was with somebody in your home who you could trust, who wouldn't tell anybody? Was it more that?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I would say that it makes no difference. You know, I mean, it makes no difference what was going through my mind at that time. It doesn't clean up the mess. It doesn't soften the blow to my family. I mean, what I have done is just about the stupidest thing that any human being can do.

MORGAN: Did it feel like --

SCHWARZENEGGER: I think that's the reality.

MORGAN: Did it feel like it at the time? Did you know what you were doing? Did you know -the -

SCHWARZENEGGER: No, because you always think that, you know, you don't think about the consequences. No.

MORGAN: The book doesn't make clear whether this was a one-off or happened more than once, it was a relationship. What was the reality of that?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I think the book goes into the details of the whole thing and I think that people, when they read it, they will get an understanding of what the whole thing was about, and that I leave it at that. You know, because I think that I have talked about it enough and every time I do talk about it, it causes pain to my children and all that, and I don't want to dwell on it.

MORGAN: Yes, I was going to ask you that. I mean I've got four kids and if I was in your position and written a book about it, I can't imagine it's easy that, you know, your relationship with them, you've already said has been very difficult since this. I can't imagine this process helps that.

I mean it does prompt the question, why did you go into that kind of detail in the book, because you have got the kids there, they are going to read, they are going to see the interviews. It sort of compounds it slightly for them.

SCHWARZENEGGER: Yes, but first of all, you know, the autobiography has been something that we have talked about for 20 years. Simon and Shuster, who I have done all my books with, always wanted me to do, after I wrote a successful book on bodybuilding called "Encyclopedia of Modern Body Building." They wanted me to do the autobiography.

And I in the '90s were doing my two, three movies a year and I was just too busy to do that. And I also felt like -- I don't think my story is interesting enough, but after the governorship, I felt like that it is an interesting story and this was before the scandal ever came out, we started to talk again with Simon and Shuster, and you know, and kept going down that road, maybe I should after I'm finished with the governorship, we write and sit down and write this autobiography.

And it was a difficult time to think back and to go back in my life because I always was a person that was going forward. Dreams, vision, go after it, and the next one and the next one and so on. And so I did it. I thought that now with the governorship, it's an interesting story and I started working with it, but at the same time there is the scandal. And so there was now a choice that I had to make, do I want to make this a book about the success story of my life or do I want to go and really write about my life and write about all of the failures, all of the wrong decisions that I have made, and on a personal level and on a professional level, and also the success story.

And I decided that I'm going to put all of it in the book and try to be as honest as possible about the good and the bad and that's exactly what this is about.

MORGAN: What --

SCHWARZENEGGER: And you know, and also, I have to tell you, if those questions don't come up now and if this issue doesn't come up now, for instance, with the book, it will come up when the next movie comes out. It will come up when the movie after that.


SCHWARZENEGGER: At one point or the other, look, I always have been a person that, you know, faces the consequences, and I don't believe in running the other way. I don't believe in hiding. I don't believe in avoiding those questions and stuff like that. But at the same time, I got to -- I would like to go and tell you every little minute detail but because there is children out there, and because there's a family, I don't want to go any further than that. I think I've caused enough pain to them, which I feel terrible about.

MORGAN: Let's take a break. Come back and talk some politics. We have the big debate coming up tomorrow. You've taken part in big debates in California as governor.


MORGAN: I want to find out what your advice may be for Mitt Romney and Barack Obama.



SCHWARZENEGGER: I'm a friend of Sarah Connor. I was told that she's here. Could I see her, please?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. Can't see her. She's making a statement.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Look, it may take awhile. Want to wait, there's a bench over there.



MORGAN: Arnold Schwarzenegger in the role that launched a million imitations. 1994's "Terminator." And he's back with me now, literally.

You are back. Do you feel that you could go back into politics after all this happened? Or is that now like the bodybuilding, done?

SCHWARZENEGGER: Well, you know, I have really no interest to go and run for office or anything like that. I jumped into the race because I felt that California was in a disastrous situation and I felt that it was time for someone from outside the box to come in and not the typical politician that people were kind of really looking for somebody like that, and someone that's in the middle and that really wants to go and fix the problems rather than thinking about every decision in a political way.

And I also always had the urge of giving back because I felt like this country has given me everything that I have, career wise, on a personal level, and it is truly the land of opportunity and that's why I was involved in Special Olympics and creating after-school programs, passing initiatives in California to get $50 million more for after- school projects --


MORGAN: Was it harder than you thought, being governor?

SCHWARZENEGGER: Well, first of all, let me just tell you that I didn't care what it takes in order to fix the state. I just wanted to dive in there and to do everything that I could to fix the problems. Now, of course, when you get in there because you're dealing with politics, you go in there with a long list of ambitious goals and every governor does that, obviously, and every president does that, and if you finish half of them, you're lucky.

And that's exactly -- I was lucky that I was able to finish half, maybe a little bit more than half, whatever. But I was able to do a lot but again, it was very frustrating that certain things that I had as a goal, like for instance, fixing the financial problem of California, never got really fixed because as soon as we did have one year down to a balanced budget, then came the economic crisis, the world crisis, and we lost kind of the jobs again that we have created, and the budget deficit went up again through the roof and all of those things.

So -- but that's why I created also the Schwarzenegger Institute at the USC so that I can continue on these policies and solve problems in the future, even though I'm out of office. So I will continue to be a public servant.

MORGAN: You took part in two debates, one when you became governor, one later when you were governor. What advice would you have for Mitt Romney in particular, as a Republican, but also Barack Obama, the president. They're going head-to-head tomorrow. What's your advice?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I think that, you know, with debates, the most important thing is to be real. I don't want to give advice to those guys because look, first of all, Romney and Obama, both of them are very skilled and they're very smart and they have maybe political differences, you know, on how to approach the problems, but --


MORGAN: What was your strategy, then, in the debates? What is --

SCHWARZENEGGER: To be as honest as possible and not to drop a lot of numbers and facts and statistics because people don't remember that. You've got to be able to look right into the screen and to communicate with the people and to grab the people and draw them in to your world, into your concerns, so they understand what needs to be done in the future and how important it is to try to do everything that you can to bring both of the parties together, because no party and no ideology has really the lock on all the problems, and solving all the problems and the solutions and all that.

So everyone, it always works best when both of the parties work together. And that's what is missing in Washington right now and what I want to hear in the debates is not just here's what we need to do, because that's a no-brainer, that we need to fix our infrastructure and we've got to get a real health care program going and have everyone be on the same page and we've got to go and stimulate the economy to get our GDP up again to 4 or 5 percent increase every year, and to, you know, really fix our immigration problem that has -- they've been promising us for 10, 15 years they're going to do something.

So it's not just that they say that we're going to fix that but I want to know exactly how. How are they going to bring both of the parties together, sit down, and really have a serious discussion and compromise rather than getting stuck in the ideological corners. That is really the most important thing because in Washington right now, nothing is happening. We haven't even had a budget in the last three years.

MORGAN: Romney has been hammered a lot for being very rich and a successful businessman. People using that against him, saying, you know, as many jobs as he made, he wrecked and so on. What have you made of that, somebody who is a very rich, successful man yourself? Are you surprised that in America, the country that gave you the opportunity to become what you are, that they would now turn on somebody for being what used to be the great American dream?

SCHWARZENEGGER: Well, first of all, as you know, John F. Kennedy came from a very rich family. So the Democrats didn't complain about that when that happened. But I don't want to get into that because I have run for office and what is being said by the other side and what you say about the other side, you cannot take for real. I mean, they don't believe that that is a bad thing that he was successful, nor does I think the -- that the Romney side believe sometimes what they accuse Obama of.

So you cannot take this stuff that seriously. This is a political year. There's a campaign going on. They will try to do everything that they can and the special interest groups and the other groups are there to paint each other in the most horrible way. That's the way politics is. And for some reason or the other, negative ads play better than positive ads. And so therefore, you will always play the negative ads. But the important thing is, as I always say to people, listen to them carefully tomorrow. You know, pay attention.

People should sit and be glued to the television set with a notepad and make notes, take notes, and really listen carefully what each one says and how much they really convince you that they actually not just paint this picture of what America should be like and have all this kind of nice sayings, but who is really believable that they are serious about bringing both parties together and getting the job done. MORGAN: I know you haven't decided who you're going to vote for in all this time, but right now, if you had to vote tomorrow, who would you vote for?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I would have to first listen to the debates. And then --

MORGAN: So they're that important to you?

SCHWARZENEGGER: It's very important. To me, the debates are absolutely important. There were times where I have made the decision way before, like with President Bush, and it was because of the relationship that we had, of the kind of things that he has done for California, for instance, and the kind of working relationship that we had and the history and all of those things, and also with for instance Senator McCain.

I jumped in there as soon as he has declared because he has been a friend and he has always been in the center, someone that tried to work on immigration reform, someone that tried to work on the environmental issues, and energy issues and all the things that I stand for, and he was there in 2003 when I ran in the recall. He was there in 2005 for the special election, he was there again in 2006 for the re-election. And when we tried to pass legislation, environmental legislation to make commitments of reducing the greenhouse gases and all of this stuff.

He was very supportive in every step of the way so I of course jumped in and helped him right from the beginning.

MORGAN: If you had been president four years ago instead of Barack Obama, how would things have been different? You could have been if you were born here. Who knows? If you had been, do you honestly think you could have done any better than Barack Obama has done inheriting such a huge financial mess? Is the reality that whoever took over was going to be pretty much where he is now? I mean how -- what do you think?

SCHWARZENEGGER: We maybe would have done things a little differently, but I can guarantee you that the president is doing everything that he can to solve the problems. I cannot imagine that President Obama is sitting there and saying to himself, let me not fix this or let me have this fail. There's no such thing. I think that when you sit in his office, like I sat as governor in my office, you work and you worry about those things day and night. Many times you have sleepless nights and you worry about those things and you try to solve it.

It's not that easy. It is a very, very difficult job, and I think that, you know, he has done a good a job probably as he can do and he did it his way and they did it their way.

I think that Mitt Romney has done a great job as governor of Massachusetts and he's a very talented guy and very good in what he does, and so it is -- look, we got to look at both of those characters, both of those candidates, and really listen to them very carefully and not do a personality test here or who is the most likeable, which usually always happens. But I mean, what is the substance behind all that.

MORGAN: Let's take another short break. I want to come back and talk to you about movies. How you went from a tiny little place in Austria to this stupendous bodybuilder to the biggest movie star on the planet.


MORGAN: Because I want to know the secrets. I'm quite fascinated (INAUDIBLE) myself.


MORGAN: Back with Arnold Schwarzenegger. His new book is called "Total Recall." It's an extraordinary story. You know, however it's ended up this year, if you go back before all the scandal broke, really, one of the most extraordinary career paths I have ever read.

You're a guy who came from nothing, you were born in this small Austrian town called Thal. In a tiny house. No plumbing, toilet, shower or phone. And yet you begin to get on this journey that brings you to America. You become the number one bodybuilder in the world, the number one movie star in the world, been a great politician, been governor of the biggest state in the country.

When you go back to that little boy, Arnold Schwarzenegger, what was it about you, do you think, that gave you the drive to achieve all this?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I think that I had the most extraordinary talent in visualizing. I always as a kid had a vision, and the vision was so real that I really felt that I can accomplish and turn those visions into reality. Of course, I recognized very quickly that that means a lot of work. Hell of a lot of work. And I was willing to do that.

So when I saw myself as a bodybuilding champion and I saw the first photographs of a British bodybuilder by the name of Reg Park, and I read that he became Hercules in the movies, and how much he trained and how he won the Mr. Universe contest three times and all that, to me this was the road map for me to go and do exactly the same thing, to train five hours a day, become Mr. Universe.

That's of course a lot of working out to become Mr. Universe. But I was -- I progressed and had so much talent and so much will and so much fire in my belly that I became with the age of 20, the youngest Mr. Universe ever. From then on, I won one world championship title after the next, and basically dominated. But it was having that vision in front of me and chasing that vision.

So when I trained in the gym and everyone was running around huffing and puffing, I had a smile on my face in the gym. I couldn't wait to do the next squat with 400 pounds. I couldn't wait to do the next 20 chin-ups. I couldn't wait to do the next 500 sit-ups, because to me that meant one step closer to achieving that vision and turning that vision into reality.

MORGAN: Can you still do the 400 pound stuff?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I cannot do the 400 pound stuff anymore.

MORGAN: What's the most you lift these days?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I lift every day. But after my heart surgery, the doctor said don't lift any more heavy. So now I do more repetitions.

MORGAN: Your idea of light weight and mine are probably two different things, aren't they?

SCHWARZENEGGER: Maybe is a different thing, yes.

MORGAN: What is your idea of a light weight these days?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I still am lifting with 150, 200 pounds.

MORGAN: Just 150, 200 pounds.


MORGAN: Which would probably break my back.

SCHWARZENEGGER: Five hundred sit ups and leg raises.

MORGAN: How many sit ups?

SCHWARZENEGGER: Five hundred sit ups and leg raises.

MORGAN: Wait a minute, 500 sit ups, really?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I ride the bicycle every day for an hour. I exercise every day. But remember, especially when you do movies, when you have to do those stunts and you have to do this action, no one cares that you're 65 years old. You still have to do it. You still have to be in there.

MORGAN: Especially the "Expendables" where they're all built like brick outhouses.

SCHWARZENEGGER: They're all in great shape.

MORGAN: If you all got in a room together and had a fight, the Expendables, who would win?

SCHWARZENEGGER: Whatever the director says.

MORGAN: Sylvester Stallone. Sly has been a very good friend of yours for a very long time. Most Saturdays in Beverly Hills, you go to the same cafe and you have lunch and you chew the fat. He tells me you're very competitive. One turns up with a big watch one week, next week the other one turns up with a bigger watch. It's one of those competitive relationships.

But I would imagine he's been great support to you in the last year. Then he himself was hit by this appalling tragedy of his son dying. I would imagine you've been equally supportive back. Tell me about your relationship.

SCHWARZENEGGER: It's an interesting relationship because we started out kind of friendly when he was in the very beginning. We shared the same agency, the same agent and everything. And he was into working out. I was into working out.

But then eventually it became very competitive. He was doing "Rocky." I was doing the "Pumping Iron" movie. Both movies became very popular. I continued on. He took off much faster after the "Rocky" movie. He won the Golden Globe and the Oscar. The film was a huge hit and all this.

Since then, we have been competing. We have been chasing each other. He came out and started using the big machine guns. I, in the next movie, had to use a bigger machine gun. We started competing on who could kill more people on the screen and who could kill them in the most creative way, who had the bigger guns, who shot more shots.

It went on and on, who has more box office success, who can do more movies a year. It was crazy. The '80s was all about total competition, who can outdo the next guy. And it was really terrific in a way, even though it wasn't good for our relationship, but it was terrific because it inspired me. He was a true inspiration for me. And he got inspired through me, so he performed better.

So it was the competition that made us perform and go all out. But then we started the restaurant chain, Planet Hollywood. And he came to Robert Earle and he said I'm in, I want to be in. Then Bruce Willis said, I want to be in. Then they came to me and said, we want you to be in; what do you think about working with all three. I said that would be terrific.

And we got together. We formed this partnership. And from then on, we became really close friends. Each trip we went, we got closer and closer. And I got to really understand him and you know, how talented he is.


SCHWARZENEGGER: So many people just see his action movies, but how talented he is in directing, how talented he is in writing, and especially in his art, in painting. Very extraordinary. So he is so good in so many different things.

MORGAN: I don't want to repeat the question, but I was just curious how it's been for you two this year when you've been --

SCHWARZENEGGER: He has been very supportive, you know, and helped me. And I've been very supportive to him. And you're right, he has had a terrible tragedy that was beyond his control. Mine was self- inflicted, but his was -- without any doubt, it just happened, that his half-sister, stepsister passed away and his son passed away and all that. And I can imagine what all of this feels like.

As a matter of fact, I can't really imagine what it is like to lose a child. MORGAN: No, I can't, either.

SCHWARZENEGGER: The amount of love I have for my children and to find out from one day to the next or one minute to the next they're gone is a horrible kind of news that you get. And he was devastated. He was crying and he was like really out. And I could really feel. So I called him, obviously, and met with him and talked with him several times and tried to help as much as I can to help him out of this.

MORGAN: Was it cathartic doing the book? Was it something that you felt by the time you closed the last chapter and finished and read it through, you were glad you had done it, even though you may get criticized from certain quarters?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I think that it was a great idea to do the book. I think that my story is a really interesting story. As you said earlier, to come over here with absolutely nothing, to grow up after the Second World War with the brutalities and with every man being angry in Austria, feeling like losers that lost the war and all this kind of thing, being occupied by Great Britain, by Russia, France and America.

And it was really tough in the beginning. Then to come over here and to be part of this great country and enjoy the land of opportunity and people receiving you with open arms, and that everything that I've accomplished here, to go up that ladder and to accomplish all of those things and to travel the world and to meet the most extraordinary people, political leaders and Nelson Mandela, and to spend time in his prison cell and to talk to him about forgiveness and all of those things, to work with Special Olympics with him, and this with Gorbachev about his time in office and with Bill Clinton and with George Bush, and to spend all of this time with George Bush at Camp David and to do horseshoe throwing and skeet and trap shooting and to sit in the Oval Office and to listen to his meetings --

MORGAN: Amazing moments for a guy from -- unknown kid from Austria.

SCHWARZENEGGER: It's unbelievable, that ride. And the book also deals with the determination and the fanaticism and the competitiveness and always keeping the eye on the ball, and I even have -- you know, the 15 Arnold Rules and all of those things that helped me get through and to get the way I am today. So that's what the book is about.

MORGAN: Whatever you've done in your life, when you've wanted something badly enough, you've tended to get there. You clearly would like to repair your marriage to, as you said, the one and only love of your life, really. If Maria's watching this, and she might well be watching this, what would you say to her?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I would just say sorry for what I've done. You know, I want to win her back. And you know, I hope even though she talks about forgiveness, I hope that she really can forgive.

MORGAN: You think -- do you deserve to be forgiven, do you think?

SCHWARZENEGGER: I think everyone deserves to be forgiven and get a break. Yes, I do. Then it's up to me, what I do with that.

MORGAN: You've always been very good to me, Arnold, over the years. You've given me many interviews. You've always been very supportive to me in my career. I'm not going to join the ranks of people trampling on you right now. It's a fascinating book. It's riveting, the story, how you get there. You're brutally honest about what happened in the last year.

I wish you all the very best. I hope you do sort things out with Maria, because in the end, no one knows what goes on behind closed doors in people's marriages. I think the contrition you've shown is sincere. I wish you the very best.

SCHWARZENEGGER: Thank you very much. Thank you.

MORGAN: Arnold Schwarzenegger.

MORGAN: Coming next, smart, sexy and single. Jenny McCarthy joins us to talk faith, family and being a "Playboy" Playmate.


MORGAN: Jenny McCarthy is a "Playboy" playmate, actress, activist, mom and so much more. She's known for her wit, her beauty, her honesty. And they're just some of her many talents. Best-selling author, too. Her new book is "Bad Habits, Confessions of a Recovering Catholic."

I'm a Catholic.


MORGAN: Sort of in recovery. Most Catholics are in recovery, aren't they?

MCCARTHY: That's why I wrote the book. I think we all are a little bit in recovery.

MORGAN: Tell me about your bad habits.

MCCARTHY: Well, you know, I've got quite a few. A lot of people might call them sins according to our religion. But you know, growing up in a very strict Irish Catholic family, I was raised to believe that our goal in life is to do good things and get to heaven. So I thought early on I would become a Nun because it would ensure my, you know, straight, go to heaven pass.

And my mom was a hairdresser when I was younger. And she used to do hair for the convent. And when she brought me over there one day, the nuns asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I said a nun and a mom. And they said oh, that's not possible. And I immediately tapped out of that and decided to be Wonder Woman instead. That was my goal.

MORGAN: So how long did the Nun thing really last in reality?

MCCARTHY: It lasted about three or four years. MORGAN: Really?

MCCARTHY: I did mass in my house, literally, (inaudible)



MCCARTHY: I mean, I --

MORGAN: you never sounded sexier to me as an Irish Catholic boy.

MCCARTHY: I loved performing, so that's the only script I really knew. And I played the priest. I was the Nun. I had a towel around my head like a habit and blessed people with my awesome holiness.

MORGAN: Your awesome holiness. I love that. How you going to feel if your book, "Bad Habits, Confessions," being next to Arnold Schwarzenegger's book on the book stands?

MCCARTHY: What a perfect pair, I would think. I think I'm the --

MORGAN: What do you make of Arnold? Do you feel -- I mean, I'm struck by the kind of venom that people feel towards him. He made a catastrophic mistake, but he clearly knows it.

MCCARTHY: First of all, of course. We all make mistakes, especially in this book, you know, you get judged a lot by a lot of people. What he did was stupid. There's many people I know in my life that have done the same thing.

MORGAN: Impregnated their housekeepers?


MORGAN: Really. Do you have any view of the election, talking of bad habits?

MCCARTHY: No, I don't, only because I've learned in my own -- how do I put it -- risky words I've used in my career to question people and make statements, it's -- I can't even go into politics. I've addressed medical issues.

MORGAN: I sort of admire your honesty there. Why don't we move very quickly to your two "Playboy" covers.

MCCARTHY: Let's do it.

MORGAN: Your area of particular expertise. We've got both of them here. This is 1994 on the left and 2012 on the right. I've got to say, age cannot wither her.

MCCARTHY: And air brushing.



MORGAN: I would imagine, tell me if I'm wrong here, I reckon the second one was less scary than the first one.

MCCARTHY: Absolutely. The first one, I was terrified. I was crying. I wasn't naked in front of a group of people ever in my life, like most 19 year olds, I think, that are playmates and pose. By the time I did it at 39, you know, I was hoping people were checking it out. I was hoping the Kraft service guy was doing a double take at 39. Please.

I was happy to kind of show off that women, you know, MILFs still have it, that they're not just -- sexy is not just for 25.

MORGAN: You certainly still have it, Jenny McCarthy. For any men watching, you are single, right?

MCCARTHY: I am so single.

MORGAN: Desperately so? Are you on the hunt?

MCCARTHY: No, no, no. I mean, the hunt? No. But just keeping the --

MORGAN: Little beady eye?

MCCARTHY: That's right.

MORGAN: There's a very poignant part of this book which is about your son. You talk about your faith in relation to Evan because he is autistic. You say, "I felt my soul being torn out of my body. I felt betrayed by God. I was angry, sad and beyond scared. I made a deal with God the day that Evan was diagnosed. You help me heal my boy, I'll teach the world how I did it."

MCCARTHY: I cried when I got the diagnosis. And I did have that conversation with God and I think when you -- I do believe in God. I do believe in a higher power. I do believe that you're guided if you're open to it. So I really listen to messages and was guided by the right doctors and got him better.

MORGAN: How's he doing? You brought him up pretty much on your own, right?

MCCARTHY: Yes. Literally on my own. And he is now in a typical school, doing great. He is a ladies' man, Casanova, has a 20 some- year-old girlfriend.

MORGAN: Really?

MCCARTHY: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. You know what, after what he's been through, I'm like you did it. You get as much as you want.

MORGAN: Quite right.

MCCARTHY: I'm going to get you the BMW and you pick up those chicks. MORGAN: Well, it's a cracking read. "Bad Habits, Confessions of a Recovering Catholic," and for more information on autism, check out You're the president of this organization. And this book is in bookshops now.

I've got to say, it's a very entertaining read. You are very entertaining.

MCCARTHY: Thank you.

MORGAN: Even if you don't give us stuff about elections.

MCCARTHY: I know. But I'll show you my boobs.

MORGAN: Jenny, it's been a pleasure to meet someone so brutally honest about her own area of expertise.

Coming up next, Only in America, the reunion of John Travolta and Olivia Newton John.


MORGAN: For tonight's Only in America, summer loving back from the past.




MORGAN: He was too cool for school. She was a sweet, innocent new girl. And together, John Travolta and Olivia Newton John made the movie musical "Grease" a stupendous box office blockbuster in 1978. Now, 34 years later, they are reunited for a holiday album called "This is Christmas." Here's the cover, showing Travolta, 58, and Newton John, 64, all smiles, holding matching cups, looking like those cheery co-hosts on local news morning shows.

They look pretty damn good for their ages, too, which may or may not be down to the gift of nature. As for the songs, well, they will be classic holiday standards, "White Christmas," "Silent Night" and "Deck the Halls." But the really exciting news is there will also be a sequel to their smash hit "You're The One That I Want."

Apparently, the idea for the album came from Newton John, who sent Travolta a text suggesting they go back to a recording studio. He jumped at the chance, but he has some stipulations, explaining, "my desire was to make this Christmas an intimate album, not something too ostentatious or showy."

Perish the thought, John. Now I'm usually rather wary of any sequels to anything. "Never go back" is my motto, whether it applies to cars, women, holiday romances, music, or movies. This one, perhaps dangerously, has all five components. So it clearly has the potential to go one of two-ways: a wonderful, nostalgic trip down memory lane for people like me, who had just become a teenager when "Grease" exploded, who worshipped the very ground that Danny Zucko spat on, or for the cynics, this could be quite possibly the cheesiest record in the history of music.

The fresh faced 13 year old boy in me says the former; sadly, the 47- year-old hard-bitten news anchor in me says very firmly the latter. Good night.