tv Amanpour on PBS PBS February 17, 2018 12:00am-12:31am PST
. welcome to amanpour on pbs. tonight, love in the digital age. it was valentine's this week so we asked what defines romance these days. my conversation with the editor of the "new york times" modern love column daniel jones and the host of "note to self" the tech show about being human. plus, the man behind aliens, gladiator, blade runner and so many other blockbuster, ridley scott on why he had to reshoot parts of his latest film and still release it on time.
good evening and welcome to the program. i'm christiane amanpour in london. swiping left, swiping right, pew research has found that 59% of adults in america think online dating is a good way to meet people but how is love in the digit a.al age changing the way experience romance and desire. this valentine's week, i decided to ask the editor of the "new york times" love column daniel jones and manoush zomorodi. welcome to you both from new york. >> thank you. >> so we are talking about love at the end of this valentine's day week. you both met your spouses in the old-fashioned way.
do you wish you had or had taken the online app route? >> i'll take that one first, daniel, if you don't mind. i would say no based on everything that i have heard from my tens of thousands of listeners about their experiences online. some of the things they talk about is that finding love these days feels like a second job. it requires being on all these different apps, swiping, reaching out, texting, use certain conventions, wanting to seem keen but not too keen and then finally meeting in person which, again, takes a ton of time and there's a sense of exhaustion. so i'm going to vote no. curious to hear what daniel thinks. >> daniel? >> i actually being a very shy person, especially when i was younger, i wish i had dating apps, i wish i had texting, i wish i had all of these ways
that when you're sort of meek and scared of approaching someone and you don't want to feel vulnerable, you can to take advantage of all of them that being said, for that exact reason -- and dating apps can serve as a crutch for people who don't want to put anything on theline, and it sort of enables our worst characteristics to fall in love and to get to know someone, you have to lay yourself out there, you have to take risks and sending a text that says you want to hang or what's up is such a minimal risk that you sort of get what you pay for. >> manoush, you were implying that it's killing romance. is that what you mean? >> well, i think if we define romance as something of a mystery, that when you meet someone and you don't know exactly how tall they are or where they went to school, you just meet someone sort of irl, in real life, there's a sense of
you really can lean into the chemistry, that there's a reason why you just suddenly want to look at each other. that's what romance seems to be about whereas now when you have pick picked off all the boxes and swiped, swiped, swiped, there's a transactional quality of how you got together in the first place but i heard it seeps over into the real life -- when people finally meet in real life, too, that that transactional quality tends to seep over. there was one woman, chrissy, who told me that especially for women i find this is that they sit down and a man looks them over and is she as thin as she said she was? is she older than she said she was? there's very much am i getting what i ordered? and i think that's the opposite of romance. >> yowza, it sounds awfully commercial, like going to a supermarket. yet michael rosenfeld, an associate professor of sociology
in stanford points out "once you here in a relationship with somebody, it doesn't matter how you met that person. there are online sites that cater to hook ups but there are also online sites that cater to people looking for long-term relationships. what's more, many people in live in the on line sites that cater to hook up end up in long-term relationships. he's got a point, right? >> i mean ashbsolutely he has a point. but that's the conundrum with technology, right? so the spectrum of technology can be wonderful but it can lean into somebody's weaknesses. i was talking to one woman who i was with her, i was like show me how it works and she matched with someone and i said "look, you matched, ask him out for coffee." and she said that's not what you do, there has to be a back and forth texting that happens. you can't act like you're really into it. that's not the convention of the app. and i thought get off of it. but she said you can't get off the app because that's where everyone is. i'm interested.
maybe daniel, you can take this, in how you think not just the romance app but just app world, app life in general is changing the brain connection, changing the idea of human connection, in intimacy, that kind of closeness that you can't get through the lens of a smartphone. >> i think the key with any of these tools is to use them to meet someone and then as quickly as possible get together in person to meet the real person. there was a great story that we ran in the modern love column about a college student who met another college student who lived a nine-hour drive away and they fell into this deep online relationship. they were skyping every night for hours, they'd fall asleep with their laptops open. she felt like this was the love of her life. and then when they met -- she decided she had to go meet him. she rented a car, drove and met him and it all fell apart. but the interesting way that it fell apart is that he especially
was used to getting his emotional fix through the device so when they were together, they didn't really have anything to talk about. they kept opening his laptop and taking out his phone and that was the place where he was used to feeling good. that was the place that made him feel loved and he couldn't get away from that just by snapping his fingers. even though the person who he supposedly loved through that device was sitting next to him. >> honestly, it's an extraordinary story and the modern love column talk about a whole array of different connection and love and this and that but they're mostly about people who actually have that person to person connection. the modern love columns are not about the world of technology and app dating. >> i think because the more complicated story is the in-person story. we've run stories like the one that i described about how technology is sort of invading lives and changing the nature of
love in those ways but the real complicated stories and strong bonds are in person. and it's hard to get away from that. those are the sort of complication complications and pains and disappointments that make for good story telling and compelling reading. >> manoush, i think it was you who wrote about how you might not have actually found your husband if you had been looking online. the algorithm didn't put you guys together in the swipe world. >> oh, yeah, i am married to an american jew, i am half iranian and half swiss german. politically, religiously, there's no way an algorithm that would have brought us together. it was work that brought us together and we went to a press conference together and here we are 16 years late we are two gorgeous children.
but it makes me think about how we use technology to keep the fires going. we text each other a lot. a little too much for my liking but it's been good for us because we remind each other of the best parts of ourselves. my husband is wicked funny on text and he makes me laugh all day long. do we have enough time together in real life? no. because we're super busy, we have kids and all those things and that's harder to make time for and it's also harder work because being married for a long time gets messy. it's about who will pick up the kids and mundane things but at the risk of sounding like a romantic, christiane, texting is helpful to us. >> it's good. be a romantic, everybody is looking for romance. that leads me to the next stat i'm going to spit out it's incredible to think more americans are single now than
ever before and a pew survey said by the time today's young adults are 50 years old, one in four of them will never have been married. what does that say to you about the situation? >> it wasn't all that long ago that the majority of people didn't marry for love, they married for financial security, religion reasons, political reasons so now the weight is on love to marry which is a high bar to feel like love is the reason for giving up the independence of being on your own which can be pretty comforting. so i think a lot of people don't clear that bar so if you're going to spend the next 50, 60 years with one person, you better love them a lot. >> i think that's the next in the works, the fact that we are
predicted to be living to 104 or whatever. that is likes an 80-year marriage and people are not ready foas apparently over 50 million users and o.k. cupid's funder says based on his data, photos drive 90% of the online dating. that sounds obvious but what are people looking for in partners? >> are they hot, another woman told me shot got more responses to her profile when she had nothing written she just posted really good looking photos. i think that's part of the problem particularly for women. if you are a woman on these apps very often you have to run the gauntlet of lewd, sexist, obscene interactions that are
quite soul destroy iing not everyone is like that but the internet brings out people's worst qualities sometimes and dating apps are no different. >> given all the different permutations of being together, married, single, gay, transsexual, all the different permutations, i have just finished a six-part series on love, intimacy and sexual fulfillment all over the world and the one thing that i found in every city was that women, particularly, and men marriage is the holy grail. they want to get married. does that surprise you? >> it's still out there as the fancy tasy of stability, of raising children. of being able to support each
other through equal earning power. it's a dream that dies hard for a lot of people and it still seems like that's the goal and fantasy. >> i wondered if the rates of marriage had gone down because there were more people in various countries where they don't seal the deal, so to speak, they don't make it legal anymore. i know a lot of my relatives in scandinavia and in germany, they just don't even bother to get married. so i wonder if people still want to be paired and coupled because that's what humans do but we don't feel the need to make it an institutional seal of approval on it. and i also wonder how the me too movement is going to play into that going forward, whether women are going to stake a stand against getting married in some way and having to have legal ramifications for partnering up. so i think it will be interesting to watch. >> we are on the cusp as ever in these amazing and profound human relations.
thank you for giving us a taste of the state of our relations right now. manoush zomorodi and daniel, thank you so much. >> thank you. as the me too movement continues, the actor kevin spacey has literally been erased from the narrative. he was the star of legendary director ridley scott's new film "all the money in the world" which tells the story -- true story -- of the kidnapping of an heir to the oil billionaire john paul getty. spacey played the miserly grandfather getty and the shoot was a rap and the trailer went out. >> how much would you pay to release your grandson if not $17 million. >> nothing. ♪ it's the time of the season for loving ♪ >> only spacey didn't make the final cut because he became the target of multiple sexual harassment allegations, many of
which he denies. but what followed was an unprecedented sprint to recast spacey's role with a veteran actor christopher plummer and to reshoot 22 cape ascenes in recoe in order to make the release date on time. ridley scott who's directed films from aliens, black hawk down, blade runner to thelma and louise, joined me in the studio to explain just how he did it. sir ridley scott, welcome to the program. >> thank you for having me. >> and you are about to enter oscar season and the awards season, you're about to get a lifetime achievement at the british awards this coming weekend. but of all the things you've done, the most extraordinary houdini act was reshooting parts of all t"all the money in the w" >> we finished the film about ten weeks ago and i had a given date that i was going to go out, maybe it was a bit longer and
this upheaval, this earthquake happened and if i realized -- i realized if i didn't do something about it the film would get buried. >> that's the mass massive tsunami called me too and the star of your film playing john paul getty, the richest man in the world, was kevin spacey and that's when allegations came out against his misconduct. when you first heard that, what did you think? >> blank, i went blank and then i won't say what i really said. then i got my partner, who was a great guy, who is the financial manager and said listen, i can fix this. we haven't had a call from anybody, nobody informed me this is going on and the at least he could have done is said "listen, dude, i'm sorry." >> you're talking about spacey? >> yeah. >> you heard nothing? >> i haven't heard anything. so i was offended and i said let's fix this, i can do in the nine days. >> it does sound unbelievable given how much money is involved
in making blockbuster films, how many days and months of shooting, getting the stars together, the big names and the locations. was it daunting? did you have any doubt that you could reshoot it? >> no. >> it's really when this -- as much as i've -- experienced does count so i thought about it very coolly for about an hour. put it together, give me the answer, nine days we're shooting nine days in a row. >> you just knew, you story boarded. you knew that's all you needed. >> sure, i had to get his replacements. >> how did that come about? >> well, i flew to new york that night. met christopher. >> christopher plummer. >> chris plumber, who i've admired forever, he says why haven't you employed me before. and brought him in, he had to learn 22 scenes.
he had the hardest thing to do. a lot of dialogue in 22 ce 2 sc. when he arrived in nine day's time in our location, we launched into it. >> let's not forget, this isot a spring chicken. christopher plummer is 88, he was 87 when that was happening and you had thought of him. he was your first choice. why do you not cast him in the beginning. >> well, there is something to do with the fact that he has a lot to say and do. the fact he's 87 and you think okay, i've got kevin as well but it will mean a lot of makeup but i'm going to go for the younger man. that simple. >> so let's just recount. it's his grandson, john paul getty iii who is kidnapped in rome and the kidnappers ask for $17 million. >> yes. >> now we're going to play a clip where john paul getty is talking to assistant, mark
wahlberg, who is trying to convince him he needs to give out a bit. >> they will do things to paul that can't be undone for any amount of money. we have to pay. >> it isn't possible. my financial position has changed. >> really? 30 seconds ago you said it was a good day. i'm not all that bright but i can multiply as well as you. with oil up as much as it was this morning, you have amassed another fortune. >> what if the embargo is lifted and oil were to crash, i would be exposed. i have never been more vulnerable financially than i am right now. >> mr. getty, with all due respect, nobody has ever been richer than you are at this moment. >> i have no money to spare. >> what would it take? i mean, what would it take for you to feel secure? >> more. >> this was such a cold act, the kidnapper, then the grandfather who held the fate of his grandson in his hand. the grandson had his ear sliced off and only then did
christopher plummer, john paul getty cough up the much-reduced ransom. his mother abigail getty, gail getty, played by michelle williams, was a formidable character. i mean, really, she battled the empire she said to get the money from john paul getty. she almost negotiated with the kidnappers and it was really an incredible thing. how important was it for you to really represent that strong woman in that way? >> i would never normally do it unless i couldn't get a handle on to what actually happen and this story telling is essential. otherwise i wouldn't do it. and so from that, we connected with gail getty who is now a formidable 82, 83 and and at the end of it when i talked to her said said, oh, well, thank god
it's a good film. >> can i ask you about the pay dispute? that's become incredibly public that all your big stars agreed to act for scale during the reshoot except for mark wahlberg who was holding out for $1.5 million while michelle was getting $1,000. and then it turns out that actually she anyway got much less than him. >> but i can side step that saying i don't deal with that as a creative director, i'm not the producer. >> but what do you think about the ongoing dilemma of the inequality in hollywood between the genders. >> i think what i do, i like that relate to what we do as sports. roger federer -- my game is tennis. roger federer, whoever he's with, can fill a stadium because that's who he is. the williams sisters can fill a stadium. sharapova can fill a stadium and some others but those who can't
on the process of the earnings curve that you got the answer. my earning curve to what i have today has come through success. i don't care what your sex is, it's got to do with success. >> okay, so success and experience. what about -- were you're tated when -- for the reshoot wahlberg held out? >> a little bit. actually, i was really pissed off. >> and pleased, i guess, afterwards that he donated it? >> he's fundamentally a good guy. i like to think it wasn't him but i think it was his representatives. >> you are distinguished by the fact -- certainly you've made iconic films throughout your career and you are prolific. you keep making films, something like two a year even now. that's a lot. but i want to play "alien" a little clip from "alien" because you chose a six foot something sigourney weaver unknown at that time. >> sure. theater. >> she was known in theater but unknown in film.
let's play and then i want to ask you about why you chose her. [ panting ] [ screaming ] scary dramatic stuff. cast you all the way back, right? now i know you've done a sequel to that, but it's the first time, isn't it, that a woman was cast as a major action superhero? >> ripley, they said "oh, it's a woman." i said "great idea." never thought about it. and then once it was finished and done certainly press fixed on it saying this is the first -- is this the first female action hero. either way, whatever it was, she was a great choice. >> i wonder whether you've taken on board, are you proud, do you like the fact that, you know, you're considered a bit of a feminist icon in terms of the films you make. >> i've done six female films, i love it. but each time i didn't really
think about it. >> the most standout one may have been "thelma and louise." you have these two amazing -- almost like a guy's road roadie movie. we're going play a scene where they get quite radical when a guy in a truck tries to mess with their heads. >> you gonna apologize or what? [ bleep ] [ bleep ] [ bleep ]. >> i don't think he's going to apologize. >> nah, i don't think so. [ yelling ] >> so i see you laughing and
enjoying that. >> he was great. they were all great. >> he was great, the women were great. >> he said "i'll never work again. i'll never get another job." >> and did he? >> i don't think so. >> but 99% of the women loved it, it was like yeah, finally a director who gets it. but that's not what everybody thought. i remember having discussions with many of my male friends and they were pretty, i think, intimidated frankly. they didn't really like the film. >> i was going to be the producer and so i offered it to my brother tony scott and he said no, i don't really like the girls. and then i went to two other directors who said not really, i have a problem with the subtext. i said, that's the whole point of the movie. i always saw it as a comedy and when you read it on the paper you can read the subtext as straight or comedic and i always
saw this comedy, but i said if you don't make it funny, you're going to switch off the middle of america and this film can be a learning curve. >> well, you brought the world a lot of joy, sir ridley scott, thank you so much indeed. >> thank you. and this weekend, ridley scott received a lifetime achievement award for his contribution the film history. that's it for our program tonight. thank you for watching amanpour on pbs and join us again next time.
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