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The Jonathan Ross Show

  • Episode: 

    9 of 10

  • Title: 

  • Transmission (TX): 

    Sat 05 Nov 2016
  • TX Confirmed: 

  • Time: 

    9.40pm - 10.40pm
  • Week: 

    Week 45 2016 : Sat 05 Nov - Fri 11 Nov
  • Channel: 

  • Amended: 

    Fri 04 Nov 2016
MICHAEL DOUGLAS speaks about his illustrious Hollywood career, meeting wife Catherine Zeta Jones and opens up about supporting his eldest son through his drug addiction
MICHELLE KEEGAN speaks about playing Tina Moore in the new ITV drama, leaving Corrie and her relationship with Mark Wright
JOHN BISHOP speaks about turning 50 and meeting The Beatles
KEITH LEMON tries to get Michael Douglas on Celebrity Juice and Through the Keyhole
One Republic perform
On this week’s episode of The Jonathan Ross Show, Jonathan is joined by Hollywood legend Michael Douglas; comedian, presenter and actor, John Bishop; Acting favourite, Michelle Keegan and comedy character, Keith Lemon.
Oscar award winning actor and producer, and star of iconic films such as One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, The China Syndrome, Fatal Attraction, Wall Street and Basic Instinct, Michael Douglas, joined the sofa and spoke to Jonathan about his career which has spanned four decades, wooing wife Catherine Zeta-Jones and his father, Kirk Douglas.
Speaking about his acting career which shows no signs of slowing down, Michael said: “I like my day job, I really like it. I had a cancer about about four or five years ago and came out just fine, all cancer free, but you kind of get this extra surge of energy to go on. I forgot how much I enjoyed producing, I produced a lot of movies too so I’ve been actively involved in both acting and producing, then I do all my other side stuff.”
Speaking about how illness changed his perspective, Michael said: “You figure out what everyday you want to do, how you want to spend your time you don't take everything for granted as much. I mean, we’re lucky they still need parts for guys my age so I’m keeping on going and enjoying it a lot. TV is opening up a lot now too we’re getting a little bit like you guys over here and the ability to jump from film into television back into film back and forth, it’s not as elite as it used to be.”
Michael also spoke about his father, Kirk Douglas, who turns 100 next month: “He is 100 on December 9th and I’m in charge of planning the party… He’s doing great, he’s doing absolutely great, he’s got a walker with wheels... He tends to fly, he’s at about a 45 degree angle at all times and moving great… I said ‘let’s maybe have an afternoon lunch’ but then he doesn’t like to watch people eat so we said, ‘let’s do a tea’ so we’re down to a tea and we’re just trying to get the details worked out but it’s turning out to be a major function.”
On what present he could possibly buy the man who has everything for his 100th birthday, Michael said: “I’ll probably wish him 101… He is rocking, I can easily see him going on. We were talking earlier, he’s working on his 11th book now, he’s a great literary writer it’s a lost art. He’s got a long history of letters he and his wife [wrote to each other]. My stepmother Anne, they’ve been married and she’s been my stepmother for 65 years. I’ve noticed they’re working on a book together so he’s quite content, quite satisfied, he’s just an extraordinary guy. It’s a real incredible rags to riches story, Russian immigrants came in 1914, he was born 1916 when he was here his parents never really learned to read or write English, it’s a wonderful immigrant story. He went to college in the back of a manure truck, he was a wrestling champion and then just graduated from there became a tremendous success then about 15 years ago, he proceeded to give away all this money he has made so he’s been very charitable and returned everything back. I’m super super proud of him.”
Speaking about One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, which he won an Oscar for producing, Michael spoke about how his father acquired the rights to it and hoped to star in the movie despite the Director not seeing him as right to play the star of the movie: “He has held that against me for my entire life, he never fails... With all his success and his legacy he keeps reminding everybody ‘I had that property,’ ‘I know you did dad…’ ‘I should have played that part,’ ‘I know you should have Dad.’”
As producer on the film, Michael had to tell his father that Jack Nicholson had been offered the main role over him. “It was not one of the more pleasant calls, he was fine about it, he wouldn’t show anything but he shared my producing backend so i always teased him that he made more off of that movie than any picture he’d ever done in his life. But thank God Jack Nicholson got an Academy Award and Kirk was the first one to tell him what a great performance he did.”
Michael also spoke about his co-star Karl Malden from Streets of San Francisco: “I adore that man… I will always remember the first day of that entire show, the first series of the show we were in the trailer in San Francisco [and the makers said we were needed to do a driving scene]... I pride myself on being a pretty good driver… I go round the corner then all I know is, I go off the hill and I had enough time in mid-air to turn to Karl, in mid air, and he looks at me before we hit the ground. Karl gets out of the car... I thought ‘I’m going to lose this job on the first day’… He said I’ve got to go back to my trailer and change my underwear!” he laughed.
On whether he ever dreamed he could have the career he has had, Michael said: “I was terrible, starting out I didn’t start acting until I was late. I had terrible stage fright, I used to look at the camera like an X-ray machine at the doctor's office. I was really scared. Someone told me early on, the camera can tell when you’re lying… But I had this whole period of always feeling self conscious and the camera can tell I’m lying then one day I said, ‘Wait a minute we lie every day, we all lie, that’s part of what acting is all about, acting is lying’ and somehow that free-ed me up and it was all of those hours on that show that really helped me. I didn’t start acting until I was almost out of college. I used to have a wastebasket off stage [to be sick in] before I went on. I don’t know why I ever did it. [The other actors] all entered from the other side.”
On his work on Romancing The Stone, Michael said: “It was tough, that was one of the first pictures where I was both the producer and the actor so we had a tough shooting schedule, it was tough locations but the joy of making it look effortless was so much fun and combining the romantic action with comedy was really a joy. I called on my old friend Danny DeVito but I could not have made this movie without Kathleen Turner. I can’t think of any actress who went through what she had to go through on this picture, not to mention with her leading man being the producer of the picture and worrying about a whole bunch of other stuff.” 
On the movie, Wall Street, Michael admitted he was shocked by the support of his character when he was actually not a nice person: “To this day if I get one more drunken [guy from Wall Street say] ‘You’re the man, you’re the guy’... I went to jail, I was a villain [and they say] ‘Nah… greed is good.’”
Michael also spoke about the powerful impact Basic Instinct had when it came out: “The combination of a solid screenplay and we tried to audition a lot of actresses for the part. Paul Verhoeven a wonderful director constantly, when we were interviewing the actresses, said ‘there’ll be nudity’ so a few actresses got unsure. Sharon [Stone] was not well known at all at the time but I was away and I came back and he showed me the audition tape and she was perfect, she was just great for that and we had a good relationship. I’m so proud of the fact that most of the movies I’ve done with actresses, it’s been some of their best work because I really try to make them as comfortable as possible in those scenarios.”
He continued: “I wanted to do a slam dance, things were getting a little precious culturally in our world and we wanted to kind of push the envelope a little bit … I remember we were shooting in San Francisco and we had 40 riot police around us because the gay lesbian community was upset that the lesbian was playing a murderess… I read a lot of newspapers, I try to keep up with the news, I try to pick pictures that I think are going to trigger strong reactions… I like to find things that are in the zeitgeist.”
And on The China Syndrome he said: “It did ok... What happened with The China Syndrome was 10 days after the movie opened, we had the [Three Mile Island Incident] and for me it was the most incredible epiphany I ever had because we were being critical about how Hollywood was being irresponsible, how could we make a movie out of a serious subject like that, scaremongering, then it happened and it really changed around and has been the largest influence in my life in terms of my involvement in the elimination of nuclear weapons and disarmament and really understanding the dangers of plutonium and what can happen.”
Michael also spoke about some of the greats that he has worked with: “I have been very fortunate that was a great, great time of my film making. [The] 70s and the 80s was a wonderful time when our business, an independent time when the studio boss was the boss before all this vertical integration of the entertainment business has happened and it’s also the biggest benefit of being second generation, growing up with my dad and seeing all the foibles and insecurities of movie stars and how they conduct their lives.”
He also spoke about more risky roles, such as his role in Falling Down: “I like that movie a lot… My favourite pictures were Falling Down, The War of the Roses with Kathleen [Turner], Wonder Boys, pictures that are comedy dramas, there’s a dramatic element but there’s a nervous comedic quality about it, obviously The War of the Roses was a little more… I really enjoy those, playing with the audience, the nervous laughter, you don't know which way the picture is going… Falling Down was really sign of the times right after the Cold War.”
Michael also said he feels those kind of films don’t get made as much anymore: “No but television is taking over, especially the cable television, the streaming areas it’s become a real area that the good film screenwriters [and] film are now going into television and that area… The small indie pictures are really hard to do now.”
On why he thought Wonder Boys didn’t quite cut through and make it as big as some of his other movies, he said: “It was a little too quirky… Great, great cast but it was just probably a little too quirky… It was a literary piece, it’s always hard… [Bob Dylan] won the Oscar for his song.”
On meeting Bob Dylan, Michael said: “I did meet him before, it was when I was in the music video with him, the clubs he did a little music video for, he’s quite a piece of work… The first time I met Bob Dylan was after the Golden Globes awards for Wall Street and I had won and as I was leaving to go to the Golden Globes, I met George Harrison. I go to the awards, you win you, go back, you do the press... By the time I come out of the press, everybody’s gone home so I go back to my hotel feeling sorry for myself and about 12 o’clock I get a call in the hotel room… [It was George Harrison] two minutes later knock on the door, George Harrison walks in with Bob Dylan and the biggest dog I’ve ever seen in my life, bigger than a greyhound, massive,. They came in, I talked the the award, I ordered some caviar and champagne, I’m talking with George, Bob’s not saying much, the dog is walking back and forth, I’m talking over the huge dog and all of a sudden the dog starts sniffing, goes to the caviar and all of a sudden he starts licking 150 bucks a lick. I’m looking thinking ‘that dog is licking the caviar’... I’m looking at Bob, it’s Bob’s dog and Bob is not saying nothing, Bob is looking and finally I see him about to do something and he goes ‘Far out, he likes caviar.’”
Michael also spoke about his more recent film and the sex scene in Behind the Candelabra which he played opposite Matt Damon: “People always think that sex scenes in films are very hot… They’re choreographed and it’s very mapped out as to what you’re going to do, especially with ladies to make them comfortable and all that… In our infamous scene, we knew it was there, we knew it was coming and all of that so we joked a little bit with each other about what flavour chapstick he wanted and this and that. I just have to take my hat off to him he was so great… that was it, it was one take.”
Speaking about working with wife, Catherine Zeta-Jones in Traffic, Michael said: “Catherine was pregnant with our daughter at the time although we were in separate stories, it was a treat… really good movie.”
Michael also spoke about meeting his wife, their 15 year age gap and how we won her over: “18 years later… [We’re] good, she’s wonderful, I just am such a fan… [I have] two beautiful children with her. We say [she’ll say], ‘Oh honey I can't wait when you get older and you’re going to be in the wheelchair and I’m going to be wheeling you around and you’re going to be saying ‘where are we going?’ and I’ll whisper it to you, ‘Cartier darling, Cartier.’ She’s got it all figured out,” he laughed.
On their first meeting, he said: “I just had seen Zorro and then I was over at the Deauville Film Festival and I saw that next night of the festival Catherine was going to be there with Zorro so I asked the gentleman, my publicist, ‘I’d really like to meet her can you find out if i can have a drink with her’ and so they got back to me and said ‘yes she‘s only going to be in for one night as she’s in the middle of making Entrapment at that time…’ So I just finished my whole promotion tour… And she arrived so I was feeling no pain, I was celebrating, I was relaxed, and I met her in the bar and was a total gentleman then they had to go off and do their work and I said ‘By chance will you come back if you want to have a nightcap and stuff?’ and she came back after her work and we sat there for a little while and I said to her after about half an hour, ‘You know, I’m going to be the father of your children.’ It sounded good and she said ‘I’ve heard a lot about you and I’ve seen a lot about you and I think it’s time that I said goodnight.’”
He continued: “And so I thought ‘I’ve totally blew it.’ She was gone early the next morning and she went to [Scotland]. I thought it’s all gone I’ve just destroyed it so I said I’ve got to find some roses and I’ve got to get some roses to her and I couldn’t believe it by the time that Catherine arrived in Mull… they got her some flowers and an apology so yes it worked out OK.”
Michael also opened up about his son’s addiction and struggle with Class A drugs: “My son was a heroin addict and ended up doing seven and a half years in Federal Prison for being a dealer to support his habit. He’s just recently gotten out, he’s well I might add, but it’s certainly gone through all of us the pain and anxiety of this. It doesn’t seem to be working in terms of our penal system throwing in non violent, I must emphasise that, non violent drug offenders with serious violent prisoners is just not working so… I think the legalisation of marijuana is well on it’s way. We have a tremendous amount of work to do in our country - without getting into the local politics - in terms of our infrastructure and one of the other issues is our health, our mental health and I think that the money that will eventually be made with taxing everything from the marijuana sales and drug policies will help programmes of rehabilitation. This isn’t saying that anything about abuse is bad but so far alcohol abuse has caused a lot more damage than the [marijuana] so far… Even from the movie Traffic when we looked into that and we questioned about legalisation back then, if it’s legalised initially there’s a spike in more use then it just goes back to about the same per cent whose choice is drugs or alcohol or nothing.”
Michelle Keegan - former star of ITV’s Coronation Street who has now gone on to act in gritty BBC drama, Our Girl - joined the sofa and spoke about her decision to leave the soap, getting engaged to Mark Wright and playing Tina Moore in new ITV drama, Tina and Bobby.
Opening up about her decision to leave Coronation Street a few years ago, Michelle said: “It was my decision to leave, it took me a long time to make that decision, two years I think it took me to make the final decision, it was a hard decision… It was their idea to kill the character. Obviously at first I was a bit shocked because I’d played her for six and a half years but in the long run it helps because it pushes you forward and I went out with a bang so what more can you ask for.”
On filming the scenes which saw her character in a coma before she was killed off, Michelle said: “It was eight hours a day in bed which is my favourite kinda day so I didn’t mind that… You have to be very aware of your eyes, your blinking and other characters coming in and out the room to speak to you so you can’t react so that was the hardest thing for me… When Barbara Knox [who plays Rita] was doing a scene, she was doing an emotional speech to me and speaking about our memories together and I actually drifted off and I twitched which made her jump so I ruined the whole take for her.”
On her career since Corrie, she said: “It’s trying to make the right choices as well, I went for a lot of auditions and got sent a lot of scripts and it is very daunting leaving a soap because you’ve had the safety net of being in the same character for years and years and it is about making the right decisions and making your own path as well.”
On her first job outside of Coronation Street, Michelle said: “I did Ordinary Lies which was a BBC drama and that was a six part drama and I was the lead in one of the episodes… I remember on the night it came out and was on the screen, I wanted to look at everyone’s reaction on Twitter and I watched it on my own, I didn’t want anyone around me and I was watching the reaction and the reaction was so positive so as soon as I saw it all I just burst out crying. It was just such a relief.”
And on recent BBC drama, Our Girl, Michelle said of the rigorous preparation: “We had to do two weeks worth of boot camp, one in England at Sandhurst and one in South Africa so obviously I had to learn the military training and also the medical side, aspects of the job.” And on her first sex scene in the show, she said: “To be fair it wasn’t that big but it was blown [out of proportion]… It was a scene where it went into a sex scene, it wasn’t a full on sex scene.”
On who she was more concerned about seeing that, she said it wasn’t husband Mark Wright but her dad: “Not so much my partner but… I’m going to be honest, my dad and he came to the screening with my mum and I was sat on the other side with the cast and I remember my brother was sat between my mum and my dad and I remember the scene coming on and I couldn't look in that direction once, I couldn't do it. And we haven’t even spoken about it since, I just can’t bring it up to him, there’s no way… He totally understands it's acting.”.
On upcoming ITV drama where she plays footballing legend Bobby Moore’s wife, Tina Moore, Michelle said: “[I’m not really a fan of football] and I don’t really understand the offside rule, I don’t really understand football if I’m honest.”
On meeting Tina Moore, she said: “I met her at the readthrough and she came on set too for a day… Don’t get me wrong, it’s very intimidating because you want to do it well for them and you want to do the story justice but she was lovely she’s so warm and welcoming she was a really nice lady.”
On whether she could relate to Tina being in a high profile relationship as she is with husband Mark, she said: “I could relate to the story and the reason why Tina found it hard.”
On Mark’s proposal to her, Michelle said: “It was all planned, it was when we were in Dubai when we were on holiday and it was four days into the holiday so I had no idea and he did it on the beach and there was a table set out with a waiter and candles… When we first started speaking actually, I did say that one day I’d like to get proposed in white dress and all that, the fairy tale, and he told me a story that on the beach there was going to be a white party so I got a white dress, didn't think anything of it because it was two years down the line but he had it all planned out so I wore the white dress, I was on the beach it was very romantic.”
The other guests shared their proposal stories with John saying “I proposed to [my wife] Melanie in a guesthouse in Buxton naked… I came out the shower and just got on one knee and said, ‘Everything you can see is all I’ve got.’”
Michael added, “[I proposed to Catherine on] December 31st 1999 right at 12 o’clock. The trouble is, we were sicker than dogs both of us... I figured you’re never going to forget it right, the Millennium so it was a good way of being sure [we don’t forget] and we got through it both of is [sniffing] we were sick as a dog.”
Comedian and actor, John Bishop, joined the sofa and spoke to Jonathan about turning 50 and meeting the Beatles.
Speaking about turning 50, John joked: “It seemed a milestone birthday until you came on and started speaking about your Dad [turning 100] and now I feel like a bit of a kid really, 50 is nothing,” he joked with Michael.
He continued: “I actually wasn’t going to do anything... It’s one of those birthdays where people go, it’s the last one you can have a party after that it’s the kids coming to see you and wave goodbye, so I was going to have a party so we booked a pub which we just found can’t get a late license so we’ve got to find somewhere else to have the party in.”
“As far as a bucket list goes, I think I’ve had the maddest ten years I could possibly imagine… Ten years ago, almost to the month, I left my job, I still had a job 10 years ago, I was a pharmaceutical sales director so if people had a transplant I used to sell drugs to stop them rejecting their organs, not a lot of comedy in that.”
And on what the best present could be, he said to Michael: “This for me and for all of us back there, watching the interview with you was superb obviously it’s not often you get the opportunity to see someone who’s career has been so great.”
On meeting Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr to interview them recently, John said: “It was an absolute joy… I interviewed them for The One Show and then the next day I was hosting the Facebook live version for their movie… Paul stood up and says ‘I know who this is, lovely to see you, how’s the family?’ I’m thinking ‘this is brilliant, Paul McCartney knows me, it’s like we’re mates…’ The next day [I saw them again for work] and they come walking up to the stage and as they come walking up Ringo bursts out laughing and Paul comes up to me and says ‘Alright Frank?’ Ringo said, ‘All day yesterday he was convinced you were called Frank, I kept on saying your name is John.’ I said ‘Listen Paul can call me Shirley if he wants’” and then John explained his “fan moment” where he had to ask them for a selfie.
Speaking about how his three sons have flown the nest, John said of his relationship with wife, Melanie: “We had our kids relatively early so now we’re both reaching 50 at the same stage and we’ve still got a lot of love for eachother and a lot of time to have with each other.”
Hilarious comedian and host of ITV2’s Celebrity Juice, Keith Lemon joined the sofa and spoke about his new series of Through the Keyhole and who’s house he’d like to go to next.
“Some of them are fantastic especially when you go to America, I’m always excited because it’s icons. Hopefully next year we’ll do your house Michael because when the next series is on, everyone would have forgotten that I suggested your house and they’ll watch it and go ‘I don’t know who’s house that is...’” On the chances of that happening, Michael joked, “Not much.”
Speaking to Jonathan, Keith said: “I often get asked who’s house would I like to do and I always say yours because you’ve got a really interesting house especially at Halloween. I remember taking a picture in the toilet at your house of a baby goblin at the toilet, I didn’t know [if it was just a decoration for Halloween] but whilst having a wee there was a baby goblin looking at me.”
On who he’d like to have on Celebrity Juice, Keith said: “I’d like Kylie Minogue… Dannii Minogue or anyone who knows the Minogues. I like the Minogues. I’ve tweeted her and she said ‘I’ll think about it’ which is showbiz for ‘No chance.’” When Jonathan asked Michael if he’d go on the panel show, Michael joked, “I’ll think about it!”
The guests all played a game called Win Lose or Drawers where Keith dressed as Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct and would flash a clue to one of Michael Douglas’ films for the fellow guests to guess.