George Clooney talks Darfur, jokes Jennifer Aniston to Larry King

George Clooney has been making the publicity rounds since his recent trip to the Chad-Sudan border. He pretty much gave a press conference after his meeting with Vice President Joe Biden and President Barack Obama – Clooney himself announced that Obama was appointing a special envoy to Sudan, to deal with the ongoing, five-year genocide that has displaced millions and killed more than 200,000 civilians.

One of Clooney’s press stops was Larry King Live. Now, I rarely watch Larry King anymore because I think Larry is stepping into gargoyle territory. But the CNN website posts highlights and transcripts from Larry King’s shows, and if it’s an interesting guest, it’s fun to skim them.

Clooney talks about Darfur, of course, almost all of the information we covered yesterday. But Clooney also talked a little about other stuff, including a dismissal of NYT‘s Nicholas Kristof‘s reporting that Clooney‘s UN security detail was pulled. Here are some highlights, courtesy of CNN:

King: What scale of interest did Biden show [in Darfur]?
Clooney: Biden has been incredibly vocal on the issue. We had a long talk about the idea of, first and foremost, appointing a high level, full-time envoy that reports directly to the White House so that it’s not just temporary. We need somebody working on this, you know, every day — getting up every morning with their sole job to find peace in the area.
King: What did you see last week?

Clooney: It was rough. You know, it’s always rough over there. You feel terrible for them. They’re hanging on by a thread.
We saw an awful lot of fear. There was [also] a tremendous amount of hope. You know, there was a lot of hope that these indictments and this new administration are going to be able to help move the international community toward a real peace.

King: How do you handle just meeting with these people and seeing this tragedy? Personally, how do you handle it?
Clooney: I could tell you a million stories about how it actually affects you personally. But I don’t think people should be going there and coming back and saying how it affected them. I think somehow we should all know that these people are hanging on by the skin of their teeth.

King: Was your safety in jeopardy?
Clooney: Oh, you’re talking about the U.N. story.

King: Yes. What, they pulled your security, right?
Clooney: I was never in jeopardy. I was with journalists who wanted to go into some areas that weren’t particularly safe. And we decided that we would go. And that wasn’t necessarily part of what the U.N. was looking to do. And so we just went on our own. It was fine. I wanted to say something, also, Larry, which I forgot to say about what I just did today. I delivered 250,000 postcards signed by people all across the country who wanted to help give some political capital to and remind this administration of how important this issue is. It was from the Save Darfur people. But it’s from all across the country. And we’re probably going to have another 700,000 by the end of the week.

King: What specifically, George, do you want Secretary of State Clinton and the administration to do?
Clooney: It doesn’t appear that the United States is going to send troops in or that the U.N. Is going to send in an army to do this. What it really means is that we’re going to need diplomacy. And diplomacy has to start and it has to be aggressive and it has to start soon. We have an opportunity here.

King: One other quick thing. Are you going to be in the final presentation of “E.R. ?”
Clooney: Actually, I’m doing a remake of “Friends,” which — I didn’t want to break the news.

King: Oh, my gosh.
Clooney: I’m going be playing the Jennifer Aniston role.

From CNN

Interesting, right? I liked the part about the postcards sent from concerned people around the country – it seems like something that President Obama would respond to. I also liked how Clooney doesn’t really blame this administration or a past administration for not sending American troops into Darfur. Those are the kind of suggestions that send even sympathetic people running. No one wants a replay of Somalia in 1993.

Something that goes unspoken – and I haven’t seen this anywhere else – is that Clooney’s hairline during this interview is… weird. Like, he seems to have re-grown about an inch of his hair line. If it’s hairplugs, it’s really good work. If it’s a toupee, it’s a high-quality one. Something’s happening up there, I know it.

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14 Responses to “George Clooney talks Darfur, jokes Jennifer Aniston to Larry King”

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  1. Dorothy says:

    George is my #1 I love him to death!

  2. Lem says:

    I feel a bit dumb not contributing the the Darfur discussion but I really have no help/insight to offer there so..
    Kaiser I think his hair is just a bit darker not so salt and pepper. but his skin looks awesome, especially under the eyes. and for the for 5 min or so of the interview he’s devoid of the usual Clooney expressions which smooth out his forehead, plus he looks to have dropped a few pounds. He looks very healthy.
    Yeah, I feel like a dumbass but that’s why I guess I comment here and not CNN. I know Darfur has been in turmoil for years upon years but I really don’t know what the issues or problems are. If anyone is interested on schooling me? I believe that a militant group has basically taken over the country? And the country has been trying to defend itself against the radicals to no avail? I may be confusing this with Carter’s long ago plotline on ER. What CAN be done? Short of the U.S. or the U.N throwing some muscle around

  3. kiki says:

    who here wants to bet George wants a political career ? Gov or senator from California.
    I think we have Enough problems here in the USA and no one for the most part really is interested in Georges cause

  4. Dorothy says:

    Unless these people have outside help UN or US they will be in constant danger. They were forced off their land onto camps and there the women are in danger every day of murder and rape, the men are few and far between because they have been killed by the “army” the goal I think is to get rid of the darfur people it sounds a lot like the Nazi’s trying to get rid of the Jews no one is helping because the land is not rich in oil or anything else deemed worthy by America. I saw a show where the women and children had to walk like 10 miles every night just to get somewhere save to sleep! and repeat every day!

  5. xxx says:

    I don’t think he wants a political career I just think he’s a good guy. It’s nice to see a very wealthy person have such a charitable side. I think the Darfur situation is pretty dire if anyone actually pays attention to what’s going on over there. We don’t have to worry about genocide in the US.

  6. PJ says:

    I think you’re on to something with the hair, but it might be the color rather than the hairline. Clooney looks like he’s graying naturally, but if you look at older photos, you can see the color changing — he’s got a great colorist. In this interview the hair bordering his face is a bit darker than usual, which makes it appear to be closer because of the higher contrast with his skin color.

    I feel very petty discussing hair in the midst of all the problems in Darfur, but it has always fascinated me as an artist how people can change their appearance.

  7. Kaiser says:

    PJ & Lem – You might be right about the color, maybe the darker color makes it look thicker, and it’s throwing me off. But I could swear, his hairline moved forward.

  8. Ling says:

    Kaiser: According to a rolling stone interview, he finds it necessary to shave his hairline back.

  9. Casey says:

    Hopefully to finish up the “hair” discussion, Clooney had just shaved his hairline back for the last movie he shot and is now growing it back. And the color probably gets a little darker based on the character he’s playing.

  10. Goddess711 says:

    Deep reflection on the whole article, everybody. His hairline and the colour…you’re very deep and so right to be slicing other people and their comments on this CB.

  11. Zoe says:

    ahhhgggg, enough with the hair discussion, please! :)

    LOVED what he said about China totally exploiting the region for money, and as usual, ignoring human rights.

    Most people are very interested in this issue (at least those who watch or read the news) and the stories of atrocities too incredible to mention have been pouring out of there for way too long.

    Just wondering if the same people who hate Jolie for her work will step up to hate Clooney too…

    he used to bug, but he’s growing on me. Not just becuase he’s decided to do some good in the world, but because he seems less arrogant and flip than he used to…

  12. MT says:

    200,000 people have been killed, who knows how many raped, and Obama needs some postcards to get his attention?

    I also don’t quite get how Georeg seems to think that “diplomacy” would stop the genocide.

    He might be incredibly naive or perhaps he has become a complete mouthpiece for the UN, but never in history did “DIPLOMACY” stop genocide.

  13. Zoe says:

    @MT, I think by “diplomacy”, he meant sanctions and economic pressure against the Chinese and other nations as opposed to military action.

  14. Mike Anderson says:

    I wish these actors/celebrities try to focus on a worst crime; the one that’s been brought upon the Palestinian people.