Pivot, Lipton & Me

The Interview
The Interview

The Interview

It is very difficult to generalise. Everyone's adventure is original- Bernard Pivot

James Lipton is such a fabulous host, interviewer, i have found myself, occasionally wishing it was me he was conversing with. It must be that I like his job, I end up admiring the 'interviewer' more than the 'interviewee'. But, after so many years of playing host to the biggest celebrities in town, there will be a new twist for one episode. Rather than guesting another actor or actress, who will bore us with their egotistical bla bla blahs, light has come. This time, a fan will be the subject of a 2 hour interview. Finally! After so long, the producers have decided to address it's lopsided presentation of the world of show business. That we, the consumers, the real 'star makers', have voices that need to be heard.

I'm in luck! The good news is, I've been selected to sit with Mr Pivot and Mr Lipton for this once in a lifetime interview. It's me and these two, bigger than life, broadcast journalists icons, who i will share the limelight with, at Bravo TV's Inside the Actors Studio. Both men will ask me questions and draw out what they hope to be a worthwhile and meaningful conversation with a non celebrity guest. The venue will be the Michael Schmmel Center of the Arts.

I'm actually looking forward to facing an audience of students from the Actors Studio Drama School, a group of artists wannabes' who will engage me with the usual Q & A. I'm tempted to gloat at the reality, that this single appearance can turn my obscure life around. Why not? After all, the show reaches 89,000,000 homes in America and 125 countries around the world. I can be the next star! Or, i can be the the biggest fool and laughing stock on television. Whoa! I should back out now.

But, why should i miss this once in a lifetime opportunity. This is the most exciting thing that's ever happened to me! Imagine i'll be sitting in the very chair where only celebrities like Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep have sat, and I'll be answering questions coming from the intelligencia of Pivot and Lipton. I have to pinch myself, because i still think I'm just dreaming! I mean, these men have been around, and they have been with the creamiest of the creme de la creme. I want to impress them of course, and I'm working on keeping them on their toes. But, i said i won't stress. I trust, that with their extraordinary gift of gab, they are sure to make me shine. That's what they do best, and that's why they are successful.

And, there's that portion in every episode, when the host will ask the famous 10 Proust's (Pivot and Lipton) questionnaires. Here's the list, and I've decided to share my answers right here.

  1. What is your favorite word? Forgiven
  2. What is your least favorite word? Hopeless
  3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? Love
  4. What turns you off? Hate
  5. What is your favorite curse word? Dork
  6. What sound or noise do you love? Nature
  7. What sound or noise do you hate? Anger
  8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Pivot and Lipton
  9. What profession would you not like to do? Slaughtering animals
  10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? You've fought a good fight! Come and rest.

The lights will go off, the interview will be over, and Mr Pivot and Mr Lipton and I will kiss and go our separate ways. Television, and show business will hopefully be better with my little contribution. How I wish. We can dream can't we? So much for fantasy.

Meantime, i'll sit home, in my own chair and watch Bravo TV. Only because i',m curious about various aspects of life, i will now and then, watch a celebrity interview. The same with politics, i want to know beyond the slants of tabloids and certain media. I do admire James Lipton and enjoy his interviews. Pivot and Lipton are cuts above the rest. It is said that James Lipton, who speaks French fluently, was inspired by a chance viewing of a Pivot programme on cable TV to create Inside the Actors Studio. Lipton adapted Pivot's use of a Proust Questionaire to one that he himself used at the end of each episode of Inside the Actors Studio. Pivot became aware that Lipton was inspired by his questionnaire, and invited Lipton to appear on the final episode of Bouillon de Culture.

James Lipton
James Lipton

JAMES LIPTON: He is an American writer, poet, composer, actor and dean emeritus of the Actors Studio Drama School in New York City. He is the executive producer, writer and host of the Bravo cable television series, Inside the Actors Studio, which debuted in 1994. From 1994 to the present, more than 250 actors, directors and writers have joined him in creating what is considered the definitive craft archive of our time. The television series, which has been recognized with fourteen Emmy nominations in fourteen years, a record for primetime television nominations, is in fact a course in a master's degree program, the renowned Actors Studio Drama School of Pace University, which was created fifteen years ago by Mr. Lipton.

In the 1990s, Lipton worked to create a three year educational program for actors that would be a distillation of what he had learned in the twelve years of his own intensive studies. In 1994, he arranged for the Actors Studio—the home base of "Method Acting" in the USA for some sixty years now—to join with New York City's New School University and form the Actors Studio Drama School, a formal degree-granting program at the graduate level

Lipton created a project within the Actors Studio drama school: a non-credit class called Inside the Actors Studio, where successful and accomplished actors, directors and writers would be interviewed and would answer questions from acting students. These sessions are broadcast on television for the public to see. Lipton himself hosts the show and conducts the main interview. Lipton's scrupulous research and boundless curiosity has prompted his guests to share the deepest secrets of their craft. The series premiered with Paul Newman, the then president of the Actors Studio. A partial list of Inside the Actors Studio guests includes Sally Field, Dennis Hopper, Julia Roberts, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Jack Lemmon, Robert De Niro, Meryl Streep, Gene Hackman, Martin Scorsese, Nicholas Cage, Renee Zellweger, Tom Cruise, Russell Crowe, Angelina Jolie, Al Pacino, Billy Cyrstal, Ellen Burstyn, Chris Rock, Harvey Kietel, Clint Eastwood, Stephen Spielberg, Robin Williams, John Travolta, Morgan Freeman, Dave Chappelle, Dustin Hoffman, Robert Downey Jr.,Will Smith, Conan O'Brien and Halle Berry.

A friend and admirer of Bernard Pivot, Lipton is currently attempting to have the Apostrophes and Bouillon de Culture programmes dubbed into English for broadcast in the US.

During a Larry King interview in 2002:

King: If heaven exists, what would you like to...
Lipton: Bernard Pivot said -- by the way, he said, if God exists, but if I felt for the American market I had to soften it a little.
King: If heaven exists, what would you like to hear guards [God] say when you arrive at the pearly gates?
Lipton: You see, Jim, you were wrong.
King: Same thing!
Lipton: I exist. But, Jim, you can come in anyway.


Inside Inside Lipton

Bernard Pivot
Bernard Pivot

BERNARD PIVOT: He is a journalist, interviewer and host of French cultural television programmes. He is a member of the Academe Goncourt, born in Lyon, the son of grocers. After starting studies in law, he entered the Centre de Formation des Journalistes in Paris. He graduated second in his class. After an internship at "Le Progrès" in Lyon, he studied economic journalism for a full year, then joined the Figaro Litteraire in 1958.

In 1970 he hosted a daily humorous radio programme that often raised political issues, which was not appreciated by Georges Pompidou. Meanwhile, in April 1973 he started hosting programme called Ouvrez les Guillemets on France's first TV network. In 1974, the ORTF was dissolved and Pivot started his Apostrophes programme. Apostrophes was first broadcast on Antenne 2 on January 10, 1975, and ran until 1990. Pivot then created Bouillon de Culture, whose scope he tried to broaden beyond books. On April 2008 Pivot was made an honorary member of the Order of Canada.

Bernard Pivot has been sharing his passion for reading and words for the past 50 years. His television programs, and famous spelling bees, have made an incomparable contribution to French culture. Over the years, he has helped make a number of Canadian authors known beyond it's borders and famous within La Francophonie. He has a great love for words and continues his important work as a member of the Conseil supérieur de la langue française and the jury for the Prix Goncourt.

More about Lipton

Lipton was born in Detroit Michigan, the son of Betty (nee Weinberg), a teacher, and journalist Lawrence Lipton. Noted as the author of the popular Beat Generation chronicle, The Holy Barbarians. In 1940s, Lipton portrayed Dan Reid on radio's The Lone Ranger. Moving to New York, he initially studied to be a lawyer, and turned to acting only to finance his education. He wrote for several soap operas, Another World, The Edge of Night, Guiding Light, Return to Peyton Place and Capitol.

In 1968, his book, An Exaltation of Larks, was first published, and has been in print and revised several times since then, including a 1993 Penguin Books edition. He had written two Broadway productions. He speaks French fluently. In 1983, Lipton published his novel, Mirrors, about dancers' lives. He later wrote and produced it as a TV movie In television, Lipton has produced some two dozen specials including: twelve Bob Hope Birthday Specials; The Road to China, an NBC entertainment special produced in China; and the first televised presidential inaugural gala for Jimmy Carter.

Do me a favor friends. Will you share your own 10 answers on Proust's questionnaires? That would be really cool!

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Comments 15 comments

Waren E profile image

Waren E 6 years ago from HAS LEFT THE BUILDING............

1 What is your favorite word? welcome

2 What is your least favorite word? unfaithful

3 What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? Beauty

4 What turns you off? unkind mind games

5 What is your favorite curse word? N/A

6 What sound or noise do you love? sea waves

7 What sound or noise do you hate? violence/reveling

8 What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Bill gates

9 What profession would you not like to do? executioner

10 If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? You've fought a good fight! Well done.

This was fun, IslandVoice thanks!


dohn121 profile image

dohn121 6 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

1. What is your favorite word? Chump

2. What is your least favorite word? Merrily

3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? My heart

4. What turns you off? Negativity

5. What is your favorite curse word? Criminy!

6. What sound or noise do you love? Laughter

7. What sound or noise do you hate? Bawling

8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Private dancer

9. What profession would you not like to do? Nuclear waste removal

10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? Oh, great! Now I owe Satan 5 souls!!!

I love your imagination, IslandVoice! You really had me going! Don't worry, you'll get your 15 minutes of fame!


IslandVoice profile image

IslandVoice 6 years ago from Hawaii Author

Waren: Great answers! I too want your no 8! Thanks for the answers.

Dohn: Thanks for indulging. Your no 3, 6 and no 8 makes you very special in my book.


GPAGE profile image

GPAGE 6 years ago from California

IslandVoice! This is a fantastic hub! I enjoyed reading about this!

I thought I would pick a few to answer......

1-What is your favorite word? Divine

4-What turns you off? Dishonesty

5-What is your favorite curse word? "Bloody"

10-If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? "Let's Dance."

G


IslandVoice profile image

IslandVoice 6 years ago from Hawaii Author

Awesome GPAGE! Love your no 10! To what dance music may i ask? Btw, congrats on your fine interview with PI 2500! You're divine!


GPAGE profile image

GPAGE 6 years ago from California

Part of me wants to go for something with a "Big Band" sound and dance with God like Fred Astair and Ginger Rogers, but the funky part of me wants to hear something from "Parliament" like "Knee Deep!" ha

Could you imagine? All the other angels joining in! What a party! ha

Thank you for your compliment on my interview with PI 2500.....She did make an interesting interview, didn't she? Best, G


IslandVoice profile image

IslandVoice 6 years ago from Hawaii Author

GPAGE, i can tell you are a dancer, ala Julienne Hough? I too, imagine a grand le parteh in heaven! I think it's really going to be a blast.


bayareagreatthing profile image

bayareagreatthing 6 years ago from Bay Area California

1.What is your favorite word? Life

2.What is your least favorite word? Death

3.What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? Love

4.What turns you off? indifference

5.What is your favorite curse word? crap

6.What sound or noise do you love? a loved one's voice

7.What sound or noise do you hate? Anger

8.What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Ellen

9.What profession would you not like to do? school bus driver

10.If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? Welcome home my dear child- everyone is here!

Very fun hub IslandVoice!


IslandVoice profile image

IslandVoice 6 years ago from Hawaii Author

Bayareagreathing, who's Ellen? It's great to know you more!


ethel smith profile image

ethel smith 6 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

1 What is your favorite word? peace

2 What is your least favorite word? war

3 What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? nature

4 What turns you off? greed

5 What is your favorite curse word? Bo--ocks

6 What sound or noise do you love? rain

7 What sound or noise do you hate? drunken shouting

8 What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? singer, if I could sing

9 What profession would you not like to do? slaughter person

10 If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? Hi you've some family waiting for you


IslandVoice profile image

IslandVoice 6 years ago from Hawaii Author

Awww Ethel! I love it! I'm curious about your no 5. i will agree with your no 7 and would you let me hear you sing? Don't go near the beheading extremists ok? Your no 10 is tops!


Godslittlechild profile image

Godslittlechild 6 years ago

1. What is your favorite word? Salvation

2. What is your least favorite word? Damnation

3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? The things of nature

4. What turns you off? Immorality

5. What is your favorite curse word: Don't have one

6. What sound or noise do you love? Low, faraway thunder and rain

7. What sound or noise do you hate? the sound of anger

8. What profession, other than your own, would you like to attempt? Chef

9. What profession would you not like to do? PR person

10. If Heaven exists, what would like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? Welcome home, come on in!

This was fun!


IslandVoice profile image

IslandVoice 6 years ago from Hawaii Author

Thanks GLC! Love nature too, thunder and rain, wish i could cook, and i understand why you wouldn't want to be a PR person. Glad you had fun!


tony0724 profile image

tony0724 6 years ago from san diego calif

What Is your favorite word ? Winner !

What Is your least favorite word ? Hate !

What turns you on creatively spiritually or Emotionally ?

When a woman looks deep Into your eyes with affection !

What turns you off ? Arrogance or conceitedness !

What Is your favorite curse word ? F@%^#k (But I try not to say It ! Especially with children around ! )

What sound or noise do you love ? Children laughing and playing

What sound or noise do you hate ? Arguing !

What profession other then your own , would you like to attempt ? Race Car Driver .

What profession would you not like to do ? Lawyer

If Heaven exists what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates ? Nice to see you , the people you love miss you but you will see them again


IslandVoice profile image

IslandVoice 6 years ago from Hawaii Author

I gotcha Tony! You already know you're a big winner here in Hub. Let me know when you decide to race ok?

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