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PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT

Interview with Barbra Streisand

Aired December 23, 2012 - 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, the one and only Barbra Streisand.

(MUSIC)

MORGAN: An extraordinary hour with the legendary superstar.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARBRA STREISAND, ACTRESS/MUSICIAN: Those men are fighting for your right to make (inaudible) you want.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: An incredible career.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STREISAND: I only began to sing because I couldn't get a job as an actress.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: Her leading men. Greatest love of her life.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STREISAND: You always ask that to people, why is that?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: And a tragedy that changed everything.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STREISAND: I think it did scar me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: Plus, politics. Saying no to plastic surgery. And a personal side of fame.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STREISAND: You see me as this star. I don't see myself like that.

(END VIDEO CLIP) MORGAN: Barbra Streisand, the way she is, a funny girl. This is PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT.

When people ask me who I'd most like to have on my show as a guest, one name continuously pops up in my mind, she is a fabulous actress, with a truly iconic voice, a voice I believe is the greatest that has ever been. A humanitarian, a political activist, a wife, a mother -- she's "A Funny Girl", she is, of course, Barbra Streisand. And I even got her name right!

(laughter)

STREISAND: Did you say "Barbara"?

MORGAN: I said Barbra.

STREISAND: Oh, Barbra.

MORGAN: But what's more important, I got Streisand right.

STREISAND: You absolutely ...

MORGAN: Because we have been on together, and you kept lecturing me that I kept calling you Barbra Streisand, which is this kind of British way of saying it.

STREISAND: Very English.

MORGAN: Streisand.

(LAUGHTER)

STREISAND: By God, you've got it!

MORGAN: So, I've just come from watching your brilliant new movie. I don't say that lightly, "Guilt Trip."

STREISAND: Thank you.

MORGAN: And the reason I loved it was it reminded me exactly of what it would be like if I were on the road trip with my mother. It's about you and Seth Rogen. You go off on this bizarre, crazy road trip together. You are the archetypal Jewish mamma, he is the archetypal only son, and chaos ensues, in a really loving, touching, funny way. Let's watch a little clip.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STREISAND: I'm over here! Honey!

SETH ROGEN: Hey, ma!

STREISAND: I'm over here.

ROGEN: I see you, hey!

All of Newark sees you. Hi, there.

STREISAND: Hi, baby. Oh, my god!

Look at you! Look at you! Oh my god!

STREISAND: Yeah.

ROGEN: Look at me.

STREISAND: Oh my God.

ROGEN: Yeah.

STREISAND: Oh my God.

ROGEN: OK, let's get out of the way here.

STREISAND: Look, you are wearing a sports jacket.

ROGEN: Yeah, I am.

STREISAND: How did you even know to buy a sports jacket?

ROGEN: I took a class in it, yeah.

STREISAND: Look at that. Oh, my god! Look, you left the price tag on it. J. Crew, my fancy-shmancy boy, wow!

ROGEN: That's me.

STREISAND: I'm just going to keep it in case it goes on sale.

ROGEN: OK. Good.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

MORGAN: It's a really touching movie. I find it very moving, it moved me to tears at one stage. And it's also very funny. You also had a ball doing it, didn't you?

STREISAND: Oh, if you like -- yeah. Yeah. If you like working that much.

(laughter)

STREISAND: Yeah, it was fun. It actually was.

MORGAN: Do you hate all work, basically?

STREISAND: No.

MORGAN: What do you like doing?

STREISAND: I love -- I love making movies and I love recording. That's what I love.

MORGAN: You don't like performing in front of people.

STREISAND: That's odd.

MORGAN: It is strange.

STREISAND: I never know what to do during the applause. I don't -- I don't know what to do. It's like oh, OK, right, go on to the next one. It's a strange thing to be live in front of people.

MORGAN: You consider yourself to be primarily an actress who sings, right?

STREISAND: Uh-huh.

MORGAN: Whereas many people would think, you are the greatest singer I'll give you that had ever been, I would argue that.

STREISAND: I don't know, but I only began to sing because I couldn't get a job as an actress, you see.

And I entered the ...

MORGAN: The dream was always to be an actress, to be a star?

STREISAND: Oh, yes.

MORGAN: You wanted to be a star?

STREISAND: I think when I was younger, I wanted to be a star, until I became a star, and then it's a lot of work. It's work to be a star. I don't enjoy the stardom part. I only enjoy the creative process.

MORGAN: If I said to you, look, you can go to a desert island, all you can do for the rest of your life you can sing, you can direct, you can act. Or you can just sit there drinking out of coconuts.

STREISAND: I would say direct.

MORGAN: That's the true love.

STREISAND: Well, directing is so interesting. You know, it just sort of encompasses everything that you see, that you know, that you've felt, that you have observed. It's just -- you know, you can turn the camera on anything -- oh my God, just turn the camera and do -- you are in control of your work, you are in control of your so-called art. I like that.

MORGAN: When I watched "Guilt Trip," and we'll come to your own guilt trips, because I'm sure there are millions of them, as I have, but it took me back to your early upbringing in many ways, because it's about motherhood, it's about the relationship between a mother and her son. You had a very difficult upbringing. You talked about this before, but I found it fascinating. You father died when you were one.

STREISAND: 15 months old.

MORGAN: Right. I was one when my father died.

STREISAND: Really?

MORGAN: I saw that parallel, yeah.

STREISAND: Ah.

MORGAN: And I was very fortunate. My mother remarried somebody who was a fantastic father to me.

STREISAND: Wow.

MORGAN: You weren't so fortunate. You had this very difficult relationship with your stepfather. And so I was personally fascinated by that. How much do you think it scarred you or did it just drive you?

STREISAND: I think it did scar me more than it drove me. What drove me was the fact that my father's life was cut so short. He died at 35 years old. And it was -- he was listed in the book of great leaders of education. He wrote incredible theses--

MORGAN: Right.

STREISAND: If there is such a word. With just wonderful observations and wonderful -- he was a teacher, and he also taught at Elmira Reformatory. He taught English to juvenile delinquents. And I could never read that piece until I got much older and had this certain experience, and then I was able to read it, and that was me. In other words, there is so much in the cellular memory or the DNA, because I never knew him. But at 16, I had discovered Chekhov and Ibsen and Shakespeare. And when I finally read my father's thesis, it was how to teach, you know, prisoners and delinquents through Ibsen and Chekhov and Shakespeare.

MORGAN: Have you been able to find out a lot about him and his character and his life?

STREISAND: Not really. Although very mystical things happened. You know, I was doing a concert, I can't remember when -- several years ago. And I was with my two girlfriends one night at my house, and they were talking about their fathers, and I couldn't relate to them. Because they had the experience of having a father. I came up to my office after they left, and there was a letter from my father that had been sent to me through a cousin who's got the Streisand same name, in Brooklyn in some synagogue, and she asked if he was related to me, and she says my cousin, and she said, could you give this to Barbra? And this was my father's girlfriend when he was 19 years old, and she found me through my cousin, and it was a poem written to her. But such a beautiful poem. And it talked about love, the only thing really in this world is love, was the moral of the poem. With an enigmatic structure in it that you had to find -- you had to find a key to find his -- he was such an interesting mind.

MORGAN: That is extraordinary.

STREISAND: So extraordinary.

MORGAN: He was 19 when he wrote this. What did that make you feel?

STREISAND: That he was telling me something. That it was to me.

MORGAN: What was he telling you?

STREISAND: It was this message that, you know, no matter what, love is the answer. That's what I called my album "Love is the Answer."

Also, it's a line from a song, but ...

MORGAN: Your character in the movie, "The Guilt Trip," has been in love for -- the viewer has been in love properly twice in her life. To the man she married and then to this other guy that she, you know, fell in love with. How many times have you in your life been properly in love?

STREISAND: How many times have I been in love? I should have prepared for this, because I see you ask ...

(laughter)

STREISAND: Although you didn't ask Mike Tyson.

MORGAN: No, there's a reason for that.

STREISAND: Oh, is that right?

(laughter)

STREISAND: I am trying to think -- at least five or six.

MORGAN: Really, that's fascinating. Does the wider world know all of them?

STREISAND: You didn't ask how long it lasted.

MORGAN: No.

STREISAND: Love, feeling or whatever, but ...

MORGAN: How long does it need to last to qualify for proper love, do you think?

STREISAND: Oh, maybe seven. Not that long. Eight months would you say, or maybe a year? A year--

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: I think it's different for everybody. Some people have it literally in a flash, no, I do believe that there can be love at first sight. I know people where that's happened, they'd been very happy the rest of their lives together.

STREISAND: Wow. MORGAN: They get lucky.

STREISAND: Yeah. Yeah. Isn't it interesting -- it's a recognition of something. I knew I liked you from the minute, but I didn't know that your father died that early. And there is, you see, we don't -- we've never talked about it. You might have known that about me. But there is something that you recognize in someone's past, and it's -- it's a void, that you're recognizing, don't you think?

MORGAN: I think -- and I think you'd become -- I'm sure you are the same, but you are parentally curious, because you never knew this person, who yet despite that, was such a pivotal part of your life, clearly. That's why you are here.

STREISAND: Yeah.

MORGAN: That's what I find fascinating about it.

STREISAND: Yeah. Yeah.

MORGAN: Did you feel that your mother properly loved you? Or was there a sense always of jealousy that you were leading the kind of life, perhaps, she dreamt of herself?

STREISAND: She was a wonderful singer. My mother had a great voice. Not like mine, not like my sister's, not like my son's, a high soprano voice, but like a bird. I mean, really beautiful. But I used to say, mom, you know, why didn't you try to get a career as a singer? "No", she said, she was too shy, she couldn't do it. And I'm basically shy, too, but that makes the difference. You know, how do you succeed if you don't try.

MORGAN: How did you feel when your mother died? Did you feel that you had reconciled things with her?

STREISAND: Basically, yeah. A little -- a short time before she died, I remember going to her house, and she had Alzheimer's. And she didn't recognize me, really, but I started to sing her a melody of something she had sung when she was younger, and that she remembered. And it just shows you the power of music, doesn't it?

MORGAN: What was it you sang? Do you remember?

STREISAND: It was something that she made a record of when she -- when I was 13 and she took me, but it was really because she made the record and then I was able to make the record when I was 13.

MORGAN: Do you think she was proud of you?

STREISAND: You know what it was, I used to say, ma, how come you never told me, "I love you", you never said those words or really hugged me. She said, I didn't want you to get a swelled head.

(LAUGHTER)

STREISAND: She said, she said I knew that my parents loved me, but they didn't have to tell me all the time. It's a certain coldness, you know. It's not tactile, it's not physical. It's -- I don't know what it is. It was strange to me always. Strange to me.

MORGAN: How are you with your son?

STREISAND: Oh, I just -- I think everything he does is great. You know, I mean, my son, that's unconditional love. I swear. It's a terrible thing to say, but I think my son could do something really bad, and I know I would find a way to justify it.

MORGAN: You sang with your son, this is in September -- just take a look at this. Because it's very moving.

STREISAND: What do you have?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(MUSIC)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

STREISAND: Doesn't he have a gorgeous voice?

MORGAN: He does. He has an amazing voice.

STREISAND: Oh my God. But look at that -- he's -- he'd never been on stage before, but he's done so much incredible work on himself that he actually could have the courage. He says I'm never going to perform. He said I like recording, but I'm never going to perform live, and I said, Jason, when I heard him sing that song on this record he made, I said, we've got to sing it together, I have to sing that with you.

MORGAN: It was beautiful to watch.

STREISAND: Wow!

MORGAN: We found it on the Internet.

STREISAND: How do you like that? I've never seen that before.

MORGAN: Have you never seen it?

STREISAND: No.

MORGAN: Amazing.

STREISAND: But we have it on a television show that's going to come out on Mother's Day hopefully, but I've never seen it ...

MORGAN: Well, it's great. Let's take a little break. And when we come back, we'll talk about Jason a bit more, because I want to know whether you've ever been on a road trip with him. Whether there's any parallel with the movie. But I want to come back first and talk about some politics. "The Way We Were," my favorite movie. I want to know what rocks your political boat, because I know for a fact a lot does.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STREISAND: The Russians don't want anybody in Spain but the Spanish. Is that scary? They are communists, yes, but they want total disarmament now, is that scary? Hitler and Mussolini are using the Spanish earth as testing ground for what they want -- another world war. Is that scary? You are damn right it is.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: Barbra Streisand in "The Way We Were." That is my single favorite movie of all time, and I told...

STREISAND: Really?

MORGAN: -- Redford that when he came in. Yes.

STREISAND: Oh, how lovely.

MORGAN: I talked to Robert Redford about it, and he said he had been resisting your clarion call for a sequel ever since.

STREISAND: Yeah. It's such a good story, the sequel.

MORGAN: I know.

'STREISAND: I am still after him.

MORGAN: He's never made a sequel to anything, he told me. He just doesn't believe in sequels.

STREISAND: I understand. I understand. But this happens to be a great story. I wanted it to be released on the 25th anniversary, but we never made it.

MORGAN: What would have happened?

STREISAND: It was just a very interesting story about through their daughter and her political activism at Berkeley in 1968 and the Democratic National Convention, which is very interesting. It was -- and a beautiful love story. Again.

MORGAN: I know that you're into your politics big time. Because we spent most of the last month emailing each other about Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: And you were tearing me off a new one, I believe, is the American phrase for what you perceived to be my lack of support for the president.

STREISAND: That's right.

MORGAN: It wasn't that. I was more interested in the debate that we were having. And it was a very good one, actually. I found it very informative.

STREISAND: I kept sending you articles, right?

MORGAN: You did. You did. And your man won.

STREISAND: Your man didn't?

MORGAN: No, no, no, I don't have a horse in the race. I'm British. I can't--

STREISAND: I know, but you --

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: My argument with you was I wondered whether Mitt Romney could be better for the American economy?

STREISAND: Oh, my God, no.

MORGAN: Given his background.

STREISAND: No, you know why?

MORGAN: You were having none of it.

STREISAND: You know why? There have been businessmen who have turned presidents, I think Herbert Hoover, George Bush, the first George Bush -- businessmen, I think -- there were a couple of others -- lousy presidents. Businessmen make lousy presidents.

MORGAN: Why have you been so consistent in support of Obama?

STREISAND: I can't even imagine thinking about what would happen to the Supreme Court if a Republican were the president, you know. I mean, Citizens United is a horrible thing, that people can spend and waste this amount of money on elections? Think of all -- you know, the people that could be -- that benefit from that money, you know.

MORGAN: There have been two elections since I've been in America, there have been two elections where one party has had far more financial firepower than the other. One was here in California, it was Meg Whitman. One was nationally. Romney clearly had more money than Obama, for most of that campaign. And in both cases the one with the most money lost.

STREISAND: Isn't that great?

MORGAN: What does that tell you about the American people?

STREISAND: Because the people -- the people are getting smarter, they are going, I don't like this -- all this amount of money spent on this election. I mean, there should be a given -- campaign finance reform is very important, and I hope somebody does something about it. I mean, you should have a given amount, equal amount, equal air time, and that's it. You know. That idea of corporations being people -- no, no, it's not -- this is a country of, by and for the people. Not of, by, and for the corporations. You know, it's like I -- because I'm so against GMOs, you know, the modified food, and I'm so against lobbying, you know, by chemical companies, lobbying, and that's Proposition 37, you know, it was bad. And that's scary, because the poison, and, you know, the poison in our foods and in the air, and pollution, and they give discretionary polluters. We are having climate change. The Republicans don't seem to want to acknowledge that. It's a major problem. And you have to be a Democrat to understand it or to believe in it.

MORGAN: Have you ever been in love with a Republican?

STREISAND: Never.

MORGAN: Could you ever be?

STREISAND: No.

MORGAN: Really? That's fascinating.

STREISAND: Well, I mean, unless there was an enormous sexual chemistry and, you know, and I had to -- we never talked about politics.

(LAUGHTER)

STREISAND: But I can't quite imagine it, no.

MORGAN: But what would have been the proudest moment for you with Obama? Or I imagine one of them when he came out so vocally for gay rights, finally?

STREISAND: Absolutely. That's great.

MORGAN: What else?

STREISAND: What else has he done, are you saying?

MORGAN: Yeah, that you are particularly proud of.

STREISAND: His stance for women. Women, the power of women, or not allowing -- just for that one reason. You know, in my show I would say, well, I'm not going to tell you -- my concert tour, limited concert tour - I say, I'm not going to tell you who to vote for, but if you want to be clean air, you want, you know, good food and so forth, and if you believe that a woman has a right to choose what happens in her own body -- in other words, or you think that your body belongs to the state. There's a clear choice. How could you -- thank God that Akin and Mourdock came out with those extremist views.

MORGAN: Extraordinary statements, weren't they.

STREISAND: Unbelievable, I thought. Isn't that great -- keep talking boys, keep talking. MORGAN: It was amazing, when you watched the footage of those moments, neither of them had a clue that they said anything remotely contentious.

STREISAND: Exactly. That's so scary, isn't it?

MORGAN: I thought that pretty unsettling. You can reach the point of potentially becoming a senator ...

STREISAND: Yeah.

MORGAN: And actually have no clue that what you are saying is deeply offensive to many people.

STREISAND: Right. Some men, mostly women, right?

MORGAN: Yeah.

STREISAND: Yeah, I mean it was -- it was deeply offensive.

MORGAN: You feel that there is any form of real equality yet in America for women?

STREISAND: Well, we are one of the last countries to ever think of having a woman be president, but I think that's possible now. But it wasn't years ago.

MORGAN: Do you think Hillary is likely to run?

STREISAND: I don't know, but I hope after a four-year rest that she would run. Because she'd be a great woman president.

MORGAN: Let's take another break. Let's come back and talk Hollywood. Your great love.

STREISAND: It is?

MORGAN: I want to know who you think the greatest movie star in the world is, ever.

STREISAND: Oh, OK.

MORGAN: Other than yourself.

STREISAND: No.

(LAUGHTER)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(MUSIC)

MORGAN: You are wearing the same outfit, I just realized!

(LAUGHTER)

STREISAND: It's very funny.

MORGAN: What do you think when you see yourself from that era? That was from "Yentl" in 1983.

STREISAND: Yeah. What do I think?

MORGAN: Yeah, when you look at yourself?

STREISAND: I'm so objective when I look at myself. You know, when I'm directing a movie, and I'm editing, you know, it's always she, her, it's not me, it's like the character in the movie.

MORGAN: Do you see a beautiful woman there?

STREISAND: Not particularly.

MORGAN: Have you ever looked in the mirror and thought you look beautiful?

STREISAND: From certain angles.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: Really? Which is your best angle?

STREISAND: Well, my left.

MORGAN: Why?

STREISAND: Because my eyes don't look as cross-eyed sometimes or my nose is better, my--

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: That's what you -- the way you feel.

STREISAND: My mouth is better. Yeah, I'm like two different people on two sides, I think.

MORGAN: Let's take a look at a clip from one of my favorite films. This is your film debut, "Funny Girl" in 1968,

(MUSIC)

STREISAND: It's odd.

MORGAN: A fabulous film.

STREISAND: You know what it is? I don't like to live in the past. I like to live in the present. So it's always odd for me to see ...

MORGAN: We got you from when you were 19 years old.

STREISAND: You do?

(CROSSTALK) MORGAN: Check this out.

STREISAND: 19 years old?

(MUSIC)

MORGAN: See, I find that absolutely spellbinding. I'm honest with you. It is funny, you're watching it and all you're thinking of I look cross-eyed, and I'm thinking there's a beautiful young woman singing like an angel.

STREISAND: Isn't that sweet.

MORGAN: Two slightly different perspectives.

STREISAND: We don't appreciate ourselves, most people, it's interesting.

MORGAN: Have you resisted the sort of self-masticated plunge into plastic surgery that so many American female stars feel compelled to do?

STREISAND: I don't trust most people. You know when I was younger I thought well, God, if only I could just take off just like little bit and then just shorten it just a little bit, but what if he screws up? You know, so. I just -- and I really don't like the idea of changing one's face, you know, like capping the teeth or stuff like that. To change a face, no.

MORGAN: Who's the greatest actor you've ever seen? I know you love acting. It's your great love. Your great passion. Who do you think?

STREISAND: Marlon Brando.

MORGAN: Really?

STREISAND: Oh, no question.

Why? Do you doubt that?

MORGAN: No, I don't, actually. I think he would definitely -- although I remember interviewing Dennis Hopper once, and he said, James Dean for him had the Brando thing as well.

STREISAND: But Brando was first.

MORGAN: Yeah.

STREISAND: No, he was fascinating. He would call me up sometimes.

MORGAN: Marlon Brando would?

STREISAND: He called me up once, and said, sing me a song. And I said, Marlon, that's like me asking you to recite "Hamlet."

(LAUGHTER) STREISAND: Which he proceeded to recite a soliloquy from "Hamlet."

MORGAN: And what did you have to sing?

STREISAND: I did.

MORGAN: What did you sing him?

STREISAND: I sang a song called "Nobody's Heart Belongs to Me."

MORGAN: Just on the phone to Marlon Brando.

STREISAND: And I remember sitting in my kitchen, and I'll never forget, this is one of those moments you never forget, I'm going, this is before they had gizmos to record things, you know, I'm going --

(LAUGHTER)

STREISAND: Doing "Hamlet." So I have to sing him a song.

MORGAN: What did he say at the end of it?

STREISAND: I don't remember that.

MORGAN: But did he then -- was it then a regular thing? Would he ring up on a Friday night and say where is my song or --

STREISAND: We -- he -- we once went on a short road trip together.

MORGAN: You and Marlon Brando? This is fantastic. Where did you go?

STREISAND: He wanted to take me to the desert, to see the wild flowers.

MORGAN: I bet he did.

STREISAND: And sleep over in a ghost town.

MORGAN: Now, we're getting there.

STREISAND: But I didn't-- I was such a nice Jewish girl that I just said, Marlon, I can't stay overnight with you. I'll go with you for the day, but you have to take me home.

MORGAN: Marlon clearly wanted to do more than just look at flowers with you.

STREISAND: Well, he wanted to sleep over in the desert with me, but--

MORGAN: You turned down Marlon Brando?

STREISAND: Yeah, I thought, yes. Absolutely.

MORGAN: How did he take rejection?

STREISAND: He was fine. But I mean, he would do things like, you know, we would talk for hours and hours sometimes on the phone. It was great.

MORGAN: But what about? I find this mesmerizing. Because you and Marlon Brando, greatest singer and the greatest actor. Just chewing the fat on the phone.

STREISAND: Yeah, we would talk for hours. Interesting, when we went on that road trip, he had just done, you know, the sexual one. "Last Tango in Paris."

MORGAN: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.

STREISAND: But I never asked him about acting. But he told me, you know, it was interesting what he was telling me, you know, and I'll write about it someday. But when I was older and I was doing my last film, no, it was "Nuts," yes, and then he was telling me all these things, you know, how he wears an ear wig, so he could hear the lines. The guy would speak the lines and--

(CROSSTALK)

STREISAND: And I was saying to him, Jesus, you know, Marlon, I didn't want to know the lines of this movie, because I was supposed to be under the influence of a drug in "Nuts," but then he started to tell me. But I never wanted to ask him, impose on him. He would come, he came to my house once and he said, OK, before we say anything, look into my eyes and don't smile or anything, see how long you could do it.

Actually, I was just reading a book about him.

MORGAN: Well, how long did you do it? Don't leave me in suspense.

STREISAND: I couldn't do it. I kept laughing. But he was amazing, and I see in this book that he does that with people.

MORGAN: Amazing.

Let's take a break. Let's come back and talk about singing.

STREISAND: Singing.

MORGAN: Yes. Because I look at you and I see the greatest singer there's ever been. I want to know how you do it. (inaudible), Barbra Streisand.

STREISAND: Oh my God.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(MUSIC)

MORGAN: When we had dinner, I said to you, I found this thing on Youtube, from you from 1975. A television special called "Funny Girl to Funny Lady," and I said, it is so amazing, it's breathtaking. That was the clip. And I've now played it to a lot of other quite famous people. I won't embarrass you by saying who it is. And they all just sit there, big singing superstars, and they sit there with their mouths open.

STREISAND: Really?

MORGAN: Yes, because it's just almost, I would say, musical perfection. But also you just look so dazzling in that clip.

STREISAND: Oh, that's so nice.

MORGAN: What do you feel when you see it?

STREISAND: I can't see what you see, I really can't.

MORGAN: Really?

STREISAND: I'm looking at the -- why was I wearing that kind of thing over the black (ph) dress? And God, my hair was light, and I was a little chubby. But --

MORGAN: You weren't chubby!

STREISAND: No, no, it's OK, it's OK.

MORGAN: But you weren't, you looked beautiful.

The interesting thing about you is the singing, and we'll come to the other, the amazing success you have had, but it's the fact that you have got so cripplingly shy when you perform live I found really interesting. That you played this huge concert I think in New York once, 130,000 people.

STREISAND: Oh, 150,000, Central Park.

MORGAN: And forgot the words to a few big songs, and it freaked you out so much, you did not perform again live for how long?

STREISAND: 27 years.

MORGAN: That's incredible. You were at the peak of your powers.

STREISAND: Yes.

MORGAN: When you could have earned literally $1 million a night in Vegas. You just stopped. That's some freakout you were going through.

STREISAND: I know.

MORGAN: When you have that freakout--

STREISAND: Because when you get freaked out--

MORGAN: Tell me how you're feeling. You're Barbra Streisand. I never imagined that people with your talent could ever feel that nervous. But clearly it's just completely--

STREISAND: There are probably several people called Barbra Streisand, meaning you see me as this star. I don't see myself like that. I'm this girl, I'm this woman, I'm this mother, I'm this wife. You know, I do not dress up, I don't at home, I don't like to say shlump (ph), but more likely, you know, the picture you saw of me, I was very comfortable doing that picture. I wore a sweat suit, sneakers.

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: What I loved about it is you were the least starry superstar I'd ever met in my life. I was imagining after all these diva stories I'd read about over the years -- that I would kind of half hope were true. I like my divas to be divas.

STREISAND: I know. Isn't that terrible? No.

MORGAN: You were not remotely diva-ish. You were just very, very normal and nice.

STREISAND: I hate to disappoint you.

MORGAN: Have you even been a terrible diva?

STREISAND: What the hell is a diva, I don't even know.

MORGAN: Have you ever been one?

STREISAND: No.

MORGAN: Have you ever screamed at people?

STREISAND: Oh, yes, I screamed at people. But--

MORGAN: How lovely (ph).

STREISAND: But that does not mean -- you know, I scream at my husband. It doesn't make me a diva.

MORGAN: Are you a perfectionist?

STREISAND: I am proud to say I am. But there is no such thing as perfection, and I found that out when I was 15 years old. I wrote it in my journal, that perfection is imperfection. So it has that humanity, like human quality. Otherwise it's too cold, right? You can just strive for perfection. Another word is excellence, strive for excellence.

MORGAN: What I love about you, is we're heading towards Christmas, and you could even sing "White Christmas" stuff better than anybody else. Watch this, I found this on the Internet.

STREISAND: You're kidding me.

(MUSIC)

STREISAND: I was hoarse that night.

(MUSIC) MORGAN: See, you're saying you sound hoarse. I've got goosebumps. This is the difference -- this is why you are such a perfectionist. It must be why you are so good.

STREISAND: Maybe, because I never--

MORGAN: Never happy.

STREISAND: I'm never in love with what I do. That's right.

MORGAN: What are some things that you do that we maybe wouldn't know? A secret, painting, you--

STREISAND: Oh, I have -- I draw, I actually draw.

(CROSSTALK)

STREISAND: I take photographs. I wrote a book on design. That's interesting to me, because that's a lot to do with directing too, it's composition and color, and you know, monochromatic frames. That interests me.

MORGAN: Are you a naturally person, or can you just completely relax if you want to?

STREISAND: I think more so now, I can relax. I mean, I really like quiet. I like to read and be quiet and watch films. Or have interesting conversations. Most conversations are not that interesting. That's why I like politics, political--

MORGAN: You are great at them. And I've had some ding-dongs with you which I thoroughly enjoyed. You give as good as you get. No holds barred.

STREISAND: No, that was fun.

MORGAN: Let's come back and talk more about "The Guilt Trip." I want to know what guilt trips you have had in your life. And I want names.

STREISAND: Oooh. You know, that's hard.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ROGEN: You want to come on my trip with me, mom?

STREISAND: You want to drive cross-country with me?

ROGEN: Yeah. No. It's, you know, we won't be gone long. It's only eight days in a car together.

STREISAND: I want to make sure that I'm hearing this correctly. You want to spend a week in a car with your mother.

ROGEN: More than anything in the world. STREISAND: Don't you think I might get on your nerves a little bit?

ROGEN: No, it was just a thought, and if you don't want to do it, then fine, I don't want to push you.

STREISAND: No, no, am I so awful that you--

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: Barbra Streisand in "The Guilt Trip." It is a very warm film. It is funny, but it's also very warm and poignant in places. Could you ever imagine doing a road trip with your son like that for a week?

STREISAND: Yeah, I could imagine going it with him.

MORGAN: You'd drive each other mad. My mother and I could probably last about a day.

STREISAND: Really?

MORGAN: Yeah, because we're just too similar. It would be too much arguing, I'm sure.

STREISAND: Really?

MORGAN: Yes. She probably wouldn't admit it, but I bet there would be.

STREISAND: No, we never did that. I love traveling with him now in my tour. That was great. He brought his dog, I brought my dog. And we ate (inaudible) together. You know what that is?

MORGAN: Yes.

STREISAND: Chinese delicacy like a hamburger. But I've taken road trips with my husband.

MORGAN: How did they go?

STREISAND: It actually brings us closer.

MORGAN: Because he's a great guy -- I only met him once or twice. But he is a very -- seems a very calming influence, a very self- confident, you know, very un-starry again. I really liked him. He's a very down to earth kind of character.

STREISAND: Yes, he is very different than I am. I am much more --

MORGAN: How much like the character you play, Joyce, are you in real life? Are you quite neurotic? In a good way. Are you?

STREISAND: Probably. Probably. I'm on good behavior now.

(LAUGHTER) MORGAN: Let's turn to the future, because you're somebody I get the feeling, just having talked to you as well, that you don't really like going on about the past.

STREISAND: No.

MORGAN: To you, it's about what's happening next.

STREISAND: Yes. And being here in the present. And being -- it's hard too, you know, just trying to be grateful for everything that's positive and not dwell on the negatives, but it's in my character to see things more pessimistically than optimistically. I have to work on that.

MORGAN: You have also managed your career, I think, so skillfully, and it may have been almost by default. It may be because you didn't want to put yourself out there much or whatever.

STREISAND: Lazy.

MORGAN: Maybe that, yes, your word, not mine. But I mean, certainly you haven't done that many tours, you know, or released that many albums by comparison to many contemporaries over that period. You haven't made that many movies.

STREISAND: Right.

MORGAN: But what you have managed to do is make each time you do anything, you make it an event that people look forward to, and that may be the secret of your incredible longevity. Did you think that?

STREISAND: Well, it's not conscious. It's the fact that I do what I -- especially in relationships if I'm, you know, I'm newly going with Jim, I don't have any desire to work. Sometimes work is a substitute for --

MORGAN: For life.

STREISAND: For life. That's right.

MORGAN: Let's look at your track record -- 51 gold albums, 30 platinum, 18 multi-platinum, 8 Grammys, 2 honorary Grammys. That's just the music. Oscars, Emmys, Grammys, the acting and so on. It's an unbelievable array of honors, medals, trophies. You must have the cabinet room that's the size of the New York Yankees. I mean, does any of that really motivate you? Do you ever look at it and think, yes, I've not done badly for a young girl from Brooklyn?

STREISAND: Every once in a while. I used to hide all these awards, and then one day I -- I was doing a new house - actually, well, it was a long time ago. Ten years ago, let's say. And I decided, I'll put them in a room. You can't see then when you walk in. But they are there, and I do appreciate them now. I must say, I do say, oh good, I was here, I'm still here, but I was here.

You know, I think it's because my father -- and maybe you'll relate to this -- died so young. That I want to be remembered. I want to have made a mark here. And records and films, television shows, they do that. They say you existed, you were here. And hopefully for, you know, a good purpose.

MORGAN: Let's take a final break. Let's talk about other ways you can be remembered, most of which I think are for your charitable work. I want to talk about heart disease and the philanthropy that you've done, because you've raised a lot of money and made a big difference.

STREISAND: I hope so.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STREISAND: We thought it would be fun to trace your lineage all the way back.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, and it turns out, Jack T. Burns, that you are 1/23rd Israelite.

STREISAND: Welcome to the tribe, Jack.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: "Little Fockers" there with Robert De Niro and Dustin Hoffman. Great fun. Did you like making that?

STREISAND: It's not a challenge, put it that way.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: Let's talk about your philanthropic career, because that's been almost as relentlessly productive as anything else you've done. One of the particular things that you are keen on is women's heart disease. Tell me why that's been such a passionate thing for you.

STREISAND: Because, you know, I am -- I dislike inequality so much, whether it's you know, gender issues or gay rights or whatever. Even in the medical sciences, there is discrimination. So it turns out that more women die of heart disease now than all cancers combined. More women die of heart disease rather than men. More women than men die of heart disease, did you know that? I was just so shocked by some of these statistics.

MORGAN: I didn't know some of this, until I researched this interview.

STREISAND: Yes. That's right.

MORGAN: And I saw why you were so strong (ph) about it. It's startling.

STREISAND: And 50 years of research have been done on men. I'll tell you a funny story too, and you realize how powerful females are, OK? That even in the research, a woman doctor discovered how to grow a heart by -- from stem cells, in, you know, in a petri dish, whatever, that's beating. How did she do it? You know how she did it? With only female stem cells, because literally, the male stem cells got lost.

(LAUGHTER)

STREISAND: Like in life.

(LAUGHTER)

STREISAND: And they refused to ask for directions. Now, this is true. Can you imagine that? So, I just believe, you know, breast cancer has done such a magnificent job raising millions and millions of dollars to help that disease, but let's say, 39,520 women died of breast cancer one year, in the last couple of years. 455,000 died of heart disease. And we haven't learned yet those organizational skills in order to raise awareness and subsequent funds to help that, because women have a different, a smaller vascular system, called the microvascular system. We need different equipment, different diagnostic techniques in order to examine women, and it's something that I -- I really look forward to happening.

MORGAN: Good for you. Good for you.

Barbra, it's been a real pleasure. I've waited so long for this moment. You have not disappointed.

STREISAND: Oh, thank you so much.

MORGAN: And this is your album, which is "Release Me," which is as stunning as your eyes look on there, and the "Guilt Trip." It's funny, it's warm, it's smart, it's poignant, it's bursting with talent. It is Barbra Streisand on film. What more can I say? Go to BarbraStreisand.com for all things Barbra. It's been such a pleasure. Come back, please. Don't leave it so long next time.

STREISAND: Thank you so much.

MORGAN: It took 47 years to get you in front of me.

STREISAND: 47?

MORGAN: I'm 47.

STREISAND: You are kidding.

MORGAN: That's how long it took me to get you to do an interview.

STREISAND: When you were a baby, you wanted to do an interview with me?

MORGAN: Yes!

STREISAND: You don't have to exaggerate! Just tell the truth. MORGAN: Ask my mother, the moment I came out, I sang "The Way We Were."

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: Barbra, lovely to see you.

STREISAND: Nice to see you.

MORGAN: The great Barbra Streisand.