tv Charlie Rose PBS April 10, 2014 12:00pm-1:01pm PDT
>> rose: welcome to the program. we begin this evening with a look at afghanistan after the elections. we talked to carlotta gall. her book is called the wrong enemy, the american afghanistan, 2001-2014. >> the military runs things in pakistan. and the intelligence service is part of the military, is part of the military. and as you know, since independence, they've had more time under military government than under civilian government in pakistan. they've had these coup and these military dictatorships. the military just believes this is the way to go. the taliban rose up and they quickly go to them and now this is the only thing i think they know how to, they really believe they're defending pakistan's interests. and ensuring a client state in
afghanistan and they will continue doing it until one stops them. >> rose: we conclude this evening with a new film called hateship and loveship it stars kristen wiig and stars liza johnson. >> better take it off please and wrap it up. >> wonderful. >> i think it's kind of an interesting character to see these days someone that's so socially and isn't really in the world that we live in. she's sort of like in her own little world in this house taking care of this woman and she gets sort of like pushed into reality and i thought that was kind of interesting. >> rose: afghanistan, pakistan and a new movie starring kristen wiig next.
>> there's a saying around here: you stand behind what you say. around here, we don't make excuses, we make commitments. and when you can't live up to them, you own up and make it right. some people think the kind of accountability that thrives on so many streets in this country has gone missing in the places where it's needed most. but i know you'll still find it, when you know where to look. captioning sponsored by rose communications from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose.
>> rose: carlotta gall is here, she's a pulitzer prize winning journal else in the north africa correspondent for the "new york times." for a decade she reported from afghanistan following 911 attacks. she wrote about it in her new book called the wrong enemy are america in afghanistan, 2001-2014. i'm very pleased to have her here at this table for the first time. welcome. >> thank you. >> rose: and congratulations. >> thank you. >> rose: much to talk about. first the elections. what's your assessment of the elections. praising it from one end to the other in terms of the courage of the people, the afghan people who went to the polls. >> yes. and i was there just before the election. it was very exciting. a lot of debate, a lot of people talking about voting who didn't vote before because they didn't, they either didn't like karzai or they were distressed at the state of country. whole lines of people lining up to go which i was there for the last elecx'n. it was empty city.
nobody went out. so some great movements there and very exciting. >> rose: you attribute it to what. >> the fact they're voting for someone new now. the karzai era of 12 years of president karzai is finished and they had someone new and that was something to think about it. a lot of young people were debating on the streets and on tv. i think also they're very worried about what happens beyond 2014 with the withdrawal of western troops. and so they wanted to choose someone and they really want to have someone who takes them forward. >> rose: someone to stop the taliban or negotiate. >> to keep good relations with the west. a lot of people talked to me even inside the palace people talked to me in terms of karzai had not signed a security agreement with the states. then they want someone to help them tackle pakistan which they
see is the real culprit. >> rose: and so do you. we'll get to that in a moment. tell me about the afghan people. >> yes. a lot of people asked me that. why did i stay so long. because of the afghan people. they are incredibly warm, tough. you don't want them to be your enemy. but amazingly hospitable and almost other worldly in that they've had an ancient civilization which is still in tact. their traditions are still in tact. they still have very tribal system. very very religion system. they're very conservative muslims as countries go. and i think they still have values that often in the west we've only forgotten. they go to funerals, they go to weddings. they spend time. they visit you when you're sick or you come to visit, they pay attention to all those things,
personal things. so that's wonderfully impressive when you're a reporter traveling through or even a visitor for a few days. they're amazingly warm so that draws you in to their culture and their whole tradition. it's great. >> rose: then explain karzai. >> i think as time goes on we'll probably reflect a bit more about his good and bad points. i think he's a master politician. and holbrook used to say this too, richard holbrook. >> rose: he didn't get along with him. >> no. but i think holbrook recognized his color political ability to maneuver, to debate, to get what he wanted so that can be frustrating i think for the west. for a long time the bush administration found he was the yes man, he did as they said. he was easily led. he went along with everything
the whole western project and then i think he got very very disillusioned with the west and with americans in particular. especially over civilian casualties as you know but also over the reluctance of the west to confront pakistan and what was going on. that really turned karzai against the west. he became disillusioned. i saw him fatigued just last week and he went on to the same thing saying that he thinks america is against him trying to stuff his efforts to make peace with the taliban and so on. so a lot of that is past the peak and it's become sort of a personal vendetta now again the west. i think he feels betrayed and badly used. and so that he cannot get over. but i think his ability to maneuver through afghan politicians and survive is really astounding. he's no longer serving leader of
afghanistan for i mean after the king but for a long time he stayed at the helm and survived and not had a knife in the back. >> rose: his brother did. >> yes, yes. so there you are. and a lot of former leaders in afghanistan have ended. >> rose: and america still stands he was corrupt. >> he's not a bad man personally. i've been through quite a few presidents, and he's one of the most likeable. >> rose: yes. >> his due to corruption is i think don't make enemies which is the survival of the president of afghanistan. he would rather look the other way when confronted including his own brother. >> rose: family. >> and then there's a sort of looseness about what is corruption, which is a failure. i think for him. he was given all these suitcases
of cash by the cia in the early days. he just took it for granted, he loved to show largess and passed it on. he runs his own presidential palace as a place of favors. but that i think is not a lack of morality, he just, he just has a looser view of what is corruption than we do, perhaps. and i think that is a failing. but i don't think he's particularly bad man and i don't think he leads the corruption. i think he just lets it happen. i don't think he's a mastering the money for himself. >> rose: then there's the question where the troops will remain after 2014 and why he refused to reach an agreement and the other presidential candidates have said they would. in fact he this want them and even the iraqis have advised him. >> yes. but you see, someone put him up
to that. he's become very suspicious. >> rose: of? >> of the west. >> rose: whose intent might be in his mind. >> well i think where it started he saw himself being scapegoated. the war was going bad and the obama administration started to blame him. and i think there was a bit of truth in that. there was a lot of leaks. >> rose: a bit of truth in the fact that the obama administration ... >> that used, threw the blame on him. when the war goes bad, you know, people started to blame karzai much more. when the war was going well, it was easier. so i think the falling out came, i think he worked, i think a lot of the leaks were given out far too freely and far too -- >> rose: what america has had the best relationship. >> i think -- had a close
relationship. well i think he understood him. he's afghan as well at heart and he understood where he was coming from. and i think understood his failings but also understood and admired his, you know, his bravery, his desire to serve his country. he genuinely does want better for his country. he's not a good administrator. he doesn't know often how to do it. i think he's not a good commander in chief also. but i think he's had a more flack than he deserves and i think in thed, as we move on to another president, we will probably see people having a second look at karzai. >> rose: who 2k50u69 the president will be. >> i think it will go to a second round and i think it will from probably be -- if the passion comes out which is problematic in the south and the east where the security's bad. but if they come out, they will
stick to their tribe and they will vote. >> rose: it's a big what if question but what if massud had lived. >> i think of that almost every week, every day. i think it's a great sadness. i think he would have built an army and police force much quicker. one of the lessons he learned when they were in power in the 90's which as you know was a terribly difficult time in afghanistan, there was a civil war and all factions citing each other. the one thing he learned trying to hold things together in kabul with the fighters when they come in from the hills, they can't police. they don't know how to police. so he set up a police academy actually when he was in the resistance against the taliban. and i think he would have known immediately to forge a strong police force because that i show as one of the major failings in
the early years of after the taliban fell that there were no police. and taliban just walked in. >> rose: i could be wrong about this and you know much better. i always had some reason to believe that general mcchrystal had a pretty good working relationship. >> yes, right, he did. and i think karzai often, you know, asked president obama to keep him on even when he was firing him. and then mcchrystal made a personal visit back at the invitation of karzai. so you're right. he i think was trust and i think he worked very hard trying to menld -- mend that and trying o survive karzai. he didn't manage really to get karzai to buy into the surge. karzai went and he did travel down, he did do as he was asked but he still never really supported the surge which i
think was also a shame because i think it was needed and mcchrystal was doing the right thing and karzai just couldn't quite take that step. >> rose: pakistan. do you think pakistan's central to this. >> of course pakistan is paranoid about its own security and it has to dominate pakistan for its own securities. >> rose: and worries about india. >> yes. but also what i think it is, the pakistan military runs thing in pakistan and the service is part of the military. and as you know since independence, they've had more time under military government than under civilian government pakistan. they've had these coups and these military dictatorships. and the military just believed this is the way to go. and they i think they had success against the russians running the majority in a guerrilla war against the russians. they still had the soviet union
and they just continued thinking this is the way to do it, this is what they are good at and they are good at it. they continued. they had their own proxy fighting to go into kashmir and the cal ban rose up and quickly caught up to them. and now this is the only thing they know how to, they really believe they're defending pakistan's interest and ensuring a client state in afghanistan. and they're going to continue doing it until someone stops them. and i think it has to be a civilian. >> rose: who is going to stop them. >> i think it has to be a civilian government. >> rose: do you think the united states well stop them. >> they could have done more to stop them. i'm not suggesting boots on the ground or bombing. and to tell the people the truth, this is probably why i wrote the book. you've got to tell the pakistani people what's going on because most of them don't know what their own government's doing. >> rose: the meese you wrote in the "new york times" magazine
just simply blanked out in pakistan. >> yes. most of the front page was white. they didn't want to print it, you know. and that was a bit of self censorship but it's because the pressure on the editors in pakistan it's very strong not to cross red lines. you don't talk about pakistan's support for taliban, you don't talk about sponsorship of terrorism which is what it is and you don't talk about nuclear issues which is another huge issue in pakistan. i feel it must come out, it must be open to the people. and then i think with civilian government will, if it helps to be strong will eventually seize back the security policy and foreign policy from the military. in a moment it's all in the hands of the military and they are society a ruinous course.
>> rose: bhutta would have done something about it. >> she said she wanted to. in the first term of prime minister she was hood winked and couldn't control things. in the end i talked to her quite a lot in her campaign. she knew what needed to be done and was determined to do it. and of course it was dangerous talk. >> rose: you believed who killed her? >> i believe -- >> rose: musharraf. >> i think he knew about it. it was part of the commander meeting which he chaired. >> rose: should we kill her or have her be killed. >> the taliban had a plan to kill her and let's do nothing. so they let -- >> rose: produce our own security for her. >> they didn't reduce it, they just never gave her security. and that comes out in the u.n. report that she never was given the proper security that other
former prime ministers were given. but the point is that they knew there was a plot and they did nothing to stop it and in fact they talked about the plot at this security meeting. so i blame them all. and this is where you see that pakistan is really playing with the devil because they have relations with al-qaeda, people with taliban people. they're list anything they're watching, they're meeting, having meetings with them and they are using them sometimes to do their dirty work and it's all deniable and we can't control. >> rose: you believe they clearly knew where omar is. >> absolutely. he's their man. >> rose: yes, i know. >> so yes. >> rose: do the americans know where he is. >> no, i doubt it. no probably not, to pinpoint. he'll sure they pick up bits and pieces like we do. i mean all of these, you can't live and work in country for 12
years as i have and not get these constant feeds oh he was cited, he visited his family for the ranadan. in fact he worked as a body guard. he didn't go inside but he know it was omar's house and stood outside and returned. you hear these stories. you can't work there and live there without hearing. often you don't print them because you know you come across them and they're just this and that. after living for 12 years you have to just put it all in a book. >> rose: indeed and i'm glad you have. before we talk about is osama bin laden and how they protected him. here's richard holbrook talking about you. >> the people who joined the taliban because of a feeling
they've been unfairly treated by the government or government corruption or abuse by the government. 25% who joined because of perceived injustice or corruption from the government, that is our mission to help the afghan government eliminate those issues that are so famous and well covered by journalists, brilliant journalists including john burns and dexter fillkins and all these people and their coverage has been terrific. the other 70%, the floating people who picked up guns in a culture where guns are very popular. it's a long standing historical tradition. that you have to deal with by a much better public information program. >> rose: he mentioned dexter fillkins. this is what dexter wrote in a blog post. what pakistan knew about bin laden from may 2nd 2011.
now that osama is dead the most intriguing question is this. did any pack tan official hide him. hiding in an urban area raises questions like who was taking care of him and how. it's 30 miles from pakistani's capitol and it is home to a military base and military academy and many retired pakistani officials. conspiracy theories abound in pakistan since 911 the most common is that bin laden was being sheltered by the isi. what's the case you have for that. >> exactly that. that everyone talks about it. everyone believes that. he's 30, he's just a few hundred yards from the top military academy. i mean i went to the house and you can see the walls of the military academy just there. so i go through it in the book. there are so many things but you have to build up the case slowly. there's so many things that point to it that every time the
head of the army would come to the military academy for the graduation parade over year that whole town gets checked for security reasons because they do have their own taliban problems. so every street somebody would come and check all the houses. >> rose: except? >> right. so then you say well okay well how come they didn't check the house. in fact are they allowed to step inside the house or do they just knock on the door. then you find out on every street there's someone working for the isi, the pakistani intelligence who then talks to all the people servants usually, all the good guards or the watch men who work on the houses. so they then find have there been recent cummings and goings, who lives there, how many men and women and so on. they have all these things you piece together slowly. but you realize that they had to have had a watch on something. so what happens is they they are
actually told, the people watching that street they're told this is a safe house you keep away. so they're sort of warned off because it's a special house. that's the intelligence house. it's someone's house. and so the police are also told that way. they are warned off. so then you have to keep looking. so eventually it took me two years but eventually i did keep talking to everyone trying to piece together a general, the former isi chief who actually said, he actually said he believed musharraf was put or had him put there and that it was his civilian intelligence chief who put him there. he then slightly watered down his story under pressure. >> rose: watered down what he told you. >> yeah. well he also told the press. it was in the press and then he sort of said he was misunderstood. but i went back to see him and it was pretty clear that he
still believed what he said. >> rose: he said there was a single -- >> he didn't say that. eventually i found someone who i can't name i'm afraid because it's extremely dangerous for him. but who is in the intelligence service, who then said there is a special desk. there has been this one man who mans it, nobody else knows only the top bosses, go straight up. he can act without referring anything so he can make his own decisions and his only job is to look after bin laden. and that just made sense to me. i could never confirm it with another source because people don't know bit or don't want to talk about it. i don't know if cia has someone to confide in about something like that because it would be considered treason for pakistani to admit that to an american. but i really believe it because
it makes sense for all the things especially when you look at that house he hid in. he didn't have an escape route, he didn't try and escape. i think his protection was always the umbrella of the isi, the intelligence service would warn him if something was happening. was keeping a sort of detached but overview. >> rose: you could argue the american knew and could have warned him and that's why they didn't tell the pakistanis. >> that's what they told me. a u.s. senior official told me that's exactly that. they noticed there was no tunnel or no back door. it made them think as they were surveilling the house made him thinking he was relied on being ticked off and that's one of the reasons they didn't tell pakistan about the suspicious of the house before the raid. when you put all that together i think it just fits together.
>> rose: recently mike morrell. we were talking about torture. he said an interesting thing. he said at one point after he was in charge of it, mohamed had been used in enhance interrogation they would say. he went back, he went back and said don't dare mention the courier, don't dare mention the courier. >> mohamed said that, yes. >> rose: it was said on this program. >> i heard that he was reticent about it or one of them was reticent about the courier. didn't realize he actually said that. that's how they put two and two together, yes. >> rose: that's how they did it, yes. one person said one thing and another person said another thing and in between, rather than -- >> and then we tried to trace the courier and his family.
and so he with a sent a local stringer up to the mountain because i knew i would get stopped trying to go to the mountains which is where they're from originally. the courier left the mountains and left and moved to kuwait. but we wanted to find out. so he did find people who knew the families. but he immediately got into trouble with the isi and told to get out of town and stop asking questions. now why are they hiding all that, you know. something's very controlled bit all. >> rose: do you worry about the nuclear weapons? >> i don't so much. i mean, it's alarming that the pakistan whose used a lot of the aid, financial aid that they've received from america in the last 12 years since 9/11. they've diverted it and built up their nuclear arsenal even more.
my colleague says it's the fastest growing nuclear arsenal in the world, the pakistani one. that's very alarming. on the other hand, i understand the pakistani military is an impressive organization and many of them are responsible citizens. i just think they have to have some civilian oversight because the sponsoring of proxy forces is i think a ruinous course. but i don't think they're capable of controlling and managing the arsenal in a responsible way. >> rose: what do you feel of the taliban in afghanistan. >> people hate them. i really don't think there's an appeal. some young men will join them but for money, for kicks. i mean afghan young men are like young men anywhere, they'll do something for a dare or for something to do. but the people hate them. i mean i saw that in the south
last year when i was there. >> rose: was it because of ideology or because of how tactics, is it because of what? >> well they hate them now. it's been so tough. it's the tactics that's been so tough living with ieds every night. the police state at that time the taliban runs and i think also what's happened is in the early years when they formed the religious movement and they brought security to this country, they were respected and a lot of them, they commanded to an elder, commanded and so on. they were quite respected. now you've got a lot of young young subs who are 30 something. they are out of control and so people hate them more and they're lying mines and ieds
in front of everybody's houses. they can't leave the house or they can't go out at night. they're not allowed to use cell phones. they're dictating their lives that afghans just won't tolerate anymore. and of course they prevent the aid and normal course of life going on. i saw this and very little is reported and is really well and remains real today. they had elections in the heartland which is absolutely center of taliban control up until last spring. and they had lookions lookions- elections there the other day. that really shows to me how exasperated people were with the taliban so they don't support them. they help them for money or out of intimidation. i think if the afghan army and police can get strong enough and
if someone can get pakistan to change their policy, i think the taliban with just collapse, the support for taliban would collapse. >> what you said is for me the taliban was the news story at the time. when it began it would finally be answered. it's where my reporting life started and rose this great wave of islamism that has powered many of today's wars. story of the decade. >> yes. >> rose: so therefore where are you now, north africa. >> yes. and fortunately, it's spreading there in a pretty alarming way. that's where i live. this young man since the arab spring have rushed towards towards extremism and at least 1500 have gone off to fight the war. what happens when they come back. far more alarming is libya which
really remind me of afghanistan in the 90's. different militias, somebody fighting each other for power, local power. and control with resources. al-qaeda's busy doing campaigns of assassinations and training fighters. these groups, really extremist islamist groups which is terrifying and has got a foot hold there in eastern libya. so yes very frightening because that's a state that's really probably going to take a decade to get a grip. >> rose: plus they've got a life. >> yes. i mean at least the government's still in charge of the oil. but yes, it just feeds more of a frenzy. >> rose: here's "time" magazine return of the taliban. the taliban will stop and
american leaves behind afghanistan. clearly the taliban didn't stop it. >> certainlily not in a major capital, in a major population center. the afghans showed they wanted to vote, this is great. >> rose: people you knew in life. the wrong enemy american afghan 2001-2014. carlotta gall. what a great picture. >> thank you. >> rose: great to have you here. >> thank you so much. great to talk. >> rose: kristen wiig starts. she made a name for herself on saturday's night live. she stars a bride's maid and made worldwide. here's a look. >> hey buddy. i felt so much more relaxed. >> thank you. >> i always feel like i'm excited. i feel relaxed and i'm ready to party.
with the best of friends. i'm going to go down the river. >> sounds like somebody is really relaxing now. what were you guys talking about up here. >> going to the restaurant. >> oh. mm-mm. >> rose: wiig turns to drama in hateship loveship directed by liza johnson a adaptation of a short store by monroe, a prize winning author.
>> of course. we've been expecting you. this is my granddaughter. >> that makes me ken. i'm the father. >> there's anyone taking care of granddaughter. >> don't talk about me. thanks. >> on thank you. >> i need your father's address. >> why. >> i could mail that for you. >> thank you. >> i waited for you to open that. >> love your friend, johanna perry. >> what if she wants to write him back. >> we'll write a fake address for your dad. >> how about if you say something like you should wear your hair back more often. >> thinking about you in your night gown.
wiig the film star. pleased to have them at this table. congratulations. >> thank you. thanks for having us. >> rose: my pleasure. how did this come about. >> oh gosh. the screen writer brought the script to me about two years ago and we worked on it a little bit and as we worked on the main character johanna, the first person i thought of that i thought would be right for the role was kristen. and i just felt like that thematically she would know how to be that character. >> really awkward and sad. [laughter] it was just like depressed. >> rose: is that you. >> that's me. >> rose: she calls you you and said would you consider this, would you do this. >> yes. i was sent the script and liza's first movie the return which i immediately ten seconds in i was like i definitely want to work with this director. and yes, i really loved the script.
i've never read a character like this before. and it was just, yeah, it was kind of just yes from the beginning. >> rose: what did you like about johanna? everything that made her so. >> yes. i mean i think it's kind of an interesting character to see these days of someone that's so socially inept and isn't really in the world we live in. she doesn't use e-mail or a cell phone. she's in a her own little world in this house taking care of this woman and was sort of pushed into reality and i thought that was sort on interesting. >> rose: did you make the movie you wanted to make. >> yes. it was really a great experience. i'm told it doesn't always go like that. [laughter] >> rose: yes. people who sat at this table told me that. >> yes. and kristen actually really helped me with that because when we first met it seemed to me that we really saw the movie the same way.
and also people really want to be honest to the extent possible because she's really such an important and talented writer. and so that helped us make a movie of a certain kind. >> rose: did you talk to her about it? >> i didn't. she's very i think confident that her work speaks for itself. and they really are -- >> rose: that's what nobel prize people do. >> i would be confident too. do it, it will be great. >> but i mean she's such a beautiful writer and she's so really literary and it's an art form because the story a lot of most important insights and exquisite moments happen inside the character's mind. so it is actually very different because you can't photograph the most important moments of the story because they're all inside people. >> rose: you have said somewhere before that you love the idea that johanna had to put herself at risk for her desire.
which is an appealing idea to me too people willing to take risks because of desire. >> yes. that's what i said about it too. >> rose: tell me about -- >> she comes from a world that doesn't do her any good to want thing she can't v for me part of the interest of the story is that when she moves -- >> rose: and you can be heard. >> yes. which i think is probably something she didn't really think about because i think in most cases if you were in the situation she was in you probably would have just given up. but she just sort of blindly i'm going to be with this person, this is how it is. maybe she thinks you only love one person in your life. >> rose: does she change or do others change for her? >> i think a little of both. i mean, i think she changes where she sort of adapts to her surroundings. but she does stay kind of her true self and people around her change in a way that they see that that's a beautiful thing.
and that there's something really exceptional about seeing someone that's, i don't know, very sort of silent and just goes with love. i think it affects sort of everybody. >> rose: and has not not had an easy life from drinking to tragedy. >> yes. >> rose: all of that. what is it that she sees in him? >> well, i think in the beginning it's that he likes her. [laughter] they've all done that. >> and he likes me, he will be mine. i think yes, i think that's initially what she sees him of course. it's like i'm not really, i don't think she looks at men that way or really probably ever. but yeah, he's sort of like the bad guy and i think that he gives her a little attention and then with a note that he writes her, i think she just goes for it. i don't know. i mean he's a great catch.
he's a drug addict, just got out of jail. doesn't have a good relationship with his kid. >> rose: responsible for the death of. >> of his wife, yes. it's on every girl's checklist. >> i think to me, allison monroe is a really sentimental writer. and her story is about the ways people do affect each other but i don't think she would ever say that you know a drug addict is going to change for you just because you want them to. and it's, for me i like the story the way people accommodate themselves to each other but it's not like a big rescue mission. >> rose: do people expect you're going to be a comedic character. >> yes. can i look in the camera on that one. yeah. >> rose: do you want to change that? >> well, i mean i want -- i'm grateful for it but i do want
each thing i do to be its open thing. and we talked about this thing a lot when we shop a movie. i get it. i know people know me from comedy. when you see actors like that a lot of times you're sort of like waiting for them to do something funny. it was really interesting in toronto when we screened the movie people were laughing at certain thing and i wanted to turn around. it's really interesting to watch the movie with an audience and i don't know if it would have been a different reaction if it was somebody else. but i mean, i hope i can do all different things. >> rose: i think you can. >> and to me that's also coming from like you do let yourself have a full range in that movie and you have warmth and there are warm moments. >> but even like the scene where i'm kissing the mirror. i remember when we saw that we're all like it's so sad, so sad kissing herself in the
mirror. and when we played it, people were like ... they know it's sad but it's just very interesting to be in a room when you have that reaction. >> rose: tell me what happens to, how do you explain the information. >> to me those characters have kind of different sets of knowledge, you know. and haley's character knows more about how to live in the world and she knows how your life is supposed to be. it's like hateship friendship courtship loveship marriage. >> rose: which is what. >> the original title. and johanna, kristen's character her life doesn't go in that order. but i feel like she promise something else into tab thank you's life which is a kind of more grounded relation to what's really happening and not just this kind of set of expectations about how things should be. and i feel like that they have impact on each other. >> rose: why did you change the title? >> i was told it was too long to
fit on the marquis of the cinema. >> rose: who told you that? >> some business person. [laughter] >> rose: somebody with a lot of money. >> some business person. >> rose: some business person. did you find the experience of doing drama satisfying? >> very much so, yes. i loved it. and this is like kind of a good transition for me because it wasn't completely a sad sort of like dramatic, i mean she was like a character. i mean like we talked about how she walked and how she moved her, didn't move her arms really. kind of like came up with character traits which is kind of maybe that's part of like our background or something like that. >> it's also part of dramatic acting. >> yes. [laughter] >> i can do that. >> you can make a character.
>> this is crazy. >> rose: aren't you glad you did this. >> yes. because i'm learning so much. >> rose: i hate to ask you this but how did you go about, you know, incorporating becoming the character. >> well, liza and i talked a lot about it and so much of who johanna is in her mind and she doesn't have a lot of dialogue really. there's a lot of her looking out the window and thinking and observing. and i don't know. we just tried to find an interesting way to be true to the character from the story and have her be, to make the transformation she needed to make. i guess. >> rose: how was -- >> he's terrific. he's such a pro. >> rose: did you know him going in. >> i met him when we were casting for the first time. i went to his house which is quite spectacular and he came down with, he grew up in iowa where the film is set and he
came down with all his, you know, actor prepared materials of like the house he grew up in which looks like the house we shot in. and we spent a lot of time just talking about the background of that character. and then he brought that all into the shoot. >> rose: when you first drove to los angeles, what were you thinking? you needed a job. >> yes. i was terrified because i hadn't told my parents that i was, my car was packed and my cat was in a little carrier next to me. i was in arizona at the time. >> rose: tucson. >> yes. at the u of a there. it really was a day of thinking about it. and i packed my car. >> rose: a day. >> yes, pretty much. i packed up. >> rose: if i'm going to do this i've got to do it. >> it just felt like i don't know, it was one of those things where i've learned that you can't lie to yourself in the mirror.
like if you look in the mirror and you ask yourself a question, you can't lie. and i looked in the mirror and i was like what do you want to do. and it almost surprised me a little bit. i was like i don't want to be here. i think it's tucson. i want to go, i'm so bad at years. 90 something. >> rose: what year in college were you? >> oh. i was a junior, yes. and i just sort of happened and my roommate at the time in college lived in l.a. so i stayed with her and it just kind of happened. and then i called my parents. >> rose: you said i'm in l.a. >> yes. i got two very different reactions. i mean, they were both like what are you talking about. >> rose: it was more supportive mother or father. >> well i think they showed support in different ways. i think my dad was more of a concern, you know like what the
hell are you doing in the most loving way possible. but they were both very surprised because i had never really talked about acting or done anything like that as a kid. and you know, when you tell your parents like that, they do tend to add up the numbers. a lot of people go out there and not everybody make it. >> rose: why did you want the act? >> i don't know. that's such a hard question. it was just sort of like in me. i took a class at school and i liked it but i wasn't, i don't know my teacher was actually really supportive and asked if i ever thought of doing it. and i was like no. >> rose: what was the growling. >> the growling. yes, that's in l.a. of theatre improv comedy group. and i never seen improv before and i went and saw a show and i was like i want to do that. >> rose: that's what i want to do. >> i sign you had up for classes right away and that theatre
changed my life. >> rose: how did lauren hear about you? >> i, a lot of times you just sort of send tapes in somehow. you just write s&l new york and it gets there. i sent in tape in and it was just like little thing i had done, little things like sit coms and a lot of stuff from characters. >> rose: you additioned before both lauren and tina fey. >> yes. when you addition you go to the studio and you go on the stage and they're there. you hear they're all there but you don't really. kind of like the set. we're like wherever i walked in the show it was like what's back there. it's like a black oblivion. it's like forever. it's like five minutes and they were very clear, five minutes. i did every character impression, anything i could think of. >> rose: how did you think
you did? >> i mean, i never usually leave and going whoa, i nailed it. because it's not like a room of, there's not a lot going on. it's really you, the camera's on. i mean, it's like, it's very intimidating. and then i got the call to come back again and addition. and i was like what am i going to do because i did everything. i've done every voice i could do. so i went back again and i didn't hear anything and then the season started. so i figure i didn't get the show. >> rose: when you do a character, do you try to get the voice first? >> it's all different. sometimes it's the voice, sometimes you'll overhear someone at the grocery store and say something was funny and you kind of like write it down. and somehow you like or someone in your family, you know.
>> rose: bill hays. he was great when he came here. >> he's one of those people that when you do the table read on wednesday, it's like you getting site when he's going to do something because you read the character description of like bill walks in as a blah blah blah and then you know, he'll start talking and just to see what he does with that description and the way he can manipulate his voice and not to mention he's just like the nicest guy. he's the best. >> rose: lauren michael says you're one of the three or four best he's ever seen. >> oh wow. >> rose: there's belushi, dana carvy. that's pretty good. >> yes, i'm speechless. >> rose: how do you grow at saturday night live. is it doing it or the input of all the people that's there, the family that's there. >> it's an ever changing family.
i think it's a lot of things and it's going to sound so cliche and stupid but you can't really expect anything and you have to just remember that it's fun. because by the nature of the show, it could be very competitive because we read 40 sketches a week and saturday at 11:30 it's 8:00. so you don't know how much you're going to be in the show. you could have a good week, you could have a bad week and you have to sort of always know there's always next week. and just be supportive of each other because it's an ensemble and i think the more you think about yourself you probably have the worst time. >> rose: you and bill did a movie together. >> yes. >> rose: it's called skeleton. >> skeleton twins. we play twins. >> rose: you play twins. >> yes. i had brown hair. we play twins. very excited about it. >> rose: what's next for you.
>> i'm writing something that i'm excited about which is about a group of teenage girls where something surprising happens to them. and i also have a project with michael that i'm excited about. >> rose: this is terrific. thank you for coming. >> thanks for having us. >> rose: great to you. >> i'm going to walk into i'm going to see narnia. i'm going to see the -- >> rose: it's like the black hole is with a it is.