Don't Kill the Messenger with Movie Research Expert Kevin Goetz

Sharon Stone (Award-Winning Actress, Activist, & Painter) on Her Hollywood Journey (Part 1 of 2)

June 19, 2024 Kevin Goetz / Sharon Stone Season 2024 Episode 45
Sharon Stone (Award-Winning Actress, Activist, & Painter) on Her Hollywood Journey (Part 1 of 2)
Don't Kill the Messenger with Movie Research Expert Kevin Goetz
More Info
Don't Kill the Messenger with Movie Research Expert Kevin Goetz
Sharon Stone (Award-Winning Actress, Activist, & Painter) on Her Hollywood Journey (Part 1 of 2)
Jun 19, 2024 Season 2024 Episode 45
Kevin Goetz / Sharon Stone

Send Kevin a Text Message

In this episode of "Don't Kill the Messenger," Kevin Goetz sits down with his longtime friend, the legendary actress Sharon Stone. Sharon shares intimate stories about her upbringing, her journey into modeling and acting, and the challenges she has faced in the entertainment industry.

Humble Beginnings (2:00)
Sharon discusses her upbringing in the small farming community of Meadville, Pennsylvania, where her family struggled financially.

A Painful Childhood Lesson (9:12)
Sharon shares a painful childhood memory of being slapped by a popular girl in school, drawing parallels to the challenges she has faced in Hollywood. Kevin describes it as trying to “slap the different out of you,” and praises Sharon for persevering while opening herself up to criticism and ridicule.

The Craft of Acting (12:13)
Sharon and Kevin discuss her approach to acting and her preference for working with directors like Martin Scorcese in Casino, Paul Verhoeven in Basic Instinct, and Albert Brooks in The Muse, who prioritize the craft over ego. She stresses that she has never accepted a role solely for the money, always prioritizing the quality of the work.

Fair Compensation (15:56)
Sharon discusses the pay disparity between male and female actors in Hollywood, advocating for fair compensation. She highlights the importance of knowing her worth in the overall value of her films.

The Magic of Movies (18:22)
Sharon and Kevin talk about the importance of the moviegoing experience and the need for studio executives to understand the emotional connection people have with films. She stresses the significance of creating movies with emotional intelligence that evoke powerful emotions.

From Small-Town Beauty Queen to Model (20:29)
Sharon recounts her journey into modeling, starting with her participation in the Miss Crawford County pageant and her encounter with Muhammad Ali.

Working with Woody Allen and James Caan (25:39)
Sharon shares her experience getting her start as an extra on Woody Allen's Stardust Memories and how her part was expanded after impressing the director and cinematographer. She also discusses her instant rapport with James Caan on the set of a Claude Lelouch film.

In Part One of this two-part interview, Sharon Stone opens up about her journey from being a studious, small-town girl to a Hollywood icon through talent, perseverance, and commitment to her craft. Through this candid conversation with her close friend, Kevin Goetz, listeners gain an intimate look at the person behind the persona. If you enjoyed this episode, please leave us a review or connect on social media. We look forward to bringing you more revelations from behind the scenes next time on Don't Kill the Messenger!

Host: Kevin Goetz
Guest: Sharon Stone
Producer: Kari Campano
Writers: Kevin Goetz, Darlene Hayman, and Kari Campano
Audio Engineer:  Gary Forbes (DG Entertainment)

For more information about Sharon Stone:
Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharon_Stone
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sharonstone/?hl=en
IMDB: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0629334/

For more information about Kevin Goetz:
Website: www.KevinGoetz360.com
Audienceology Book: https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/Audience-ology/Kevin-Goetz/9781982186678
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram: @KevinGoetz360
Linked In @K

Show Notes Transcript

Send Kevin a Text Message

In this episode of "Don't Kill the Messenger," Kevin Goetz sits down with his longtime friend, the legendary actress Sharon Stone. Sharon shares intimate stories about her upbringing, her journey into modeling and acting, and the challenges she has faced in the entertainment industry.

Humble Beginnings (2:00)
Sharon discusses her upbringing in the small farming community of Meadville, Pennsylvania, where her family struggled financially.

A Painful Childhood Lesson (9:12)
Sharon shares a painful childhood memory of being slapped by a popular girl in school, drawing parallels to the challenges she has faced in Hollywood. Kevin describes it as trying to “slap the different out of you,” and praises Sharon for persevering while opening herself up to criticism and ridicule.

The Craft of Acting (12:13)
Sharon and Kevin discuss her approach to acting and her preference for working with directors like Martin Scorcese in Casino, Paul Verhoeven in Basic Instinct, and Albert Brooks in The Muse, who prioritize the craft over ego. She stresses that she has never accepted a role solely for the money, always prioritizing the quality of the work.

Fair Compensation (15:56)
Sharon discusses the pay disparity between male and female actors in Hollywood, advocating for fair compensation. She highlights the importance of knowing her worth in the overall value of her films.

The Magic of Movies (18:22)
Sharon and Kevin talk about the importance of the moviegoing experience and the need for studio executives to understand the emotional connection people have with films. She stresses the significance of creating movies with emotional intelligence that evoke powerful emotions.

From Small-Town Beauty Queen to Model (20:29)
Sharon recounts her journey into modeling, starting with her participation in the Miss Crawford County pageant and her encounter with Muhammad Ali.

Working with Woody Allen and James Caan (25:39)
Sharon shares her experience getting her start as an extra on Woody Allen's Stardust Memories and how her part was expanded after impressing the director and cinematographer. She also discusses her instant rapport with James Caan on the set of a Claude Lelouch film.

In Part One of this two-part interview, Sharon Stone opens up about her journey from being a studious, small-town girl to a Hollywood icon through talent, perseverance, and commitment to her craft. Through this candid conversation with her close friend, Kevin Goetz, listeners gain an intimate look at the person behind the persona. If you enjoyed this episode, please leave us a review or connect on social media. We look forward to bringing you more revelations from behind the scenes next time on Don't Kill the Messenger!

Host: Kevin Goetz
Guest: Sharon Stone
Producer: Kari Campano
Writers: Kevin Goetz, Darlene Hayman, and Kari Campano
Audio Engineer:  Gary Forbes (DG Entertainment)

For more information about Sharon Stone:
Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharon_Stone
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sharonstone/?hl=en
IMDB: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0629334/

For more information about Kevin Goetz:
Website: www.KevinGoetz360.com
Audienceology Book: https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/Audience-ology/Kevin-Goetz/9781982186678
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram: @KevinGoetz360
Linked In @K

Podcast: Don't Kill the Messenger with Movie Research Expert Kevin Goetz 
Guest:  Actress, Hollywood Icon, Sharon Stone
Interview Transcript:

Announcer (00:02):

There's a little-known part of Hollywood that most people are not aware of known as the audience test preview. The recently released book, Audienceology, reveals this for the first time. Our podcast series, Don't Kill the Messenger, brings this book to life, taking a peek behind the curtain. And now, join author and entertainment research expert, Kevin Goetz.

Kevin Goetz (00:24):

The purpose of my podcast is twofold. One of course is to pull back the curtain on little known parts of filmmaking, the audience testing of movies and entertainment research. The other part though, is sharing conversations with my friends that I know in the industry so my listeners can learn from other elements of the business. Today we're going to do both of these things. I have a very special treat for you today, a conversation with an icon. I first met Sharon Stone in the nineties through my husband. She's become one of my best friends. Both Neil and I are the godfathers of her children. We are an integral part of each other's lives, and we are the family that we have chosen for each other. You know, I always say there's a season, a reason and a lifetime, right, in friendships. And we are clearly a lifetime. I'm not going to give you her bio because her name is simply enough. Sharon, I love you and I welcome you to a whole other part of my life, my podcast.

Sharon Stone (01:26):

<laugh>. I'm thrilled.

Kevin Goetz (01:28):

I'm so glad you're here.

Sharon Stone (01:30):

I always say I, there's a woman behind every man, and that's Neil <laugh>, and I am the other woman that's behind the both of you.

Kevin Goetz (01:40):

You. A hundred percent. Yeah. Without question. You know, when I was preparing for this, I'm thinking, what's the angle? We know so much about each other that it's odd to sit and have a conversation that is something that others don't know about. You know? So I'm thinking, what's the in, in everything?

Sharon Stone (02:00):

Well, when you started your business, there was so much resistance when you left to start your own business. We had that phase.

Kevin Goetz (02:08):

We've had many phases.

Sharon Stone (02:10):

Like when I met you through Neil, when Neil was still the head of creative advertising at Sony, and Neil and I were such good friends.

Kevin Goetz (02:19):

How did you meet again?

Sharon Stone (02:21):

It was on a movie.

Kevin Goetz (02:22):

It was Gloria, wasn't it?

Sharon Stone (02:24):

I think it was Gloria. We were doing the advertising for Gloria, and we met and we were like Insta friends we met. And it was one of those things where you meet someone and it's like you've known them forever. And Neil is hilarious and he is also so brilliant. And that's a combination that I really love. I love people who are really, really funny and really, really smart. And I also like people who aren't full of and he doesn't take himself too seriously. And he is clever and does understand the dynamic of the business without being precious. And I love that about Neil.

Kevin Goetz (03:05):

He was also one of the only supporters. That movie was not getting great support within the studio. If I recall. At that time, they didn't, they change directors or something, and it…

Sharon Stone (03:14):

Well, it was always Sidney Lumet. But Sidney was in a period of his life where he was quite difficult. He wanted to be on the four o'clock Long Island train and be done with his day. And it was a hard period. He was very cranky and he wanted to rehearse all these scenes that were going to be in the streets of New York on a sound stage with tape on the floor. And that's a period that has really gone past. And we were eating up, you know, studio money with this thing that I think everyone felt was a big waste of time. And then we were shooting in Harlem on Halloween day with a 9-year-old. And I was in four-inch heels trying to carry a 9-year-old through the streets of Harlem on Halloween, which is a nightmare. It was a three ring circus. 

Kevin Goetz (04:14):

Of course, Gena Rowlands did the original. And I always loved Gena Rowlands happens to be one of Neil and my dear friends. And you did something very classy before you agreed to take the role.

Sharon Stone (04:24):

Yes. I called her. And I asked her if she would have a meeting with me. And I asked her if she was comfortable with me remaking this film because she's one of the greatest actresses that ever lived, and one of the actresses that I admire more than anyone. And also she too is not full of beans.

Kevin Goetz (04:43):

Oh no, she's not. 

Sharon Stone (04:43):

But she's really a serious actress. And she and Cassavetes were really serious filmmakers. And they're not about all of their feelings and all of their tender ways. You have to talk to them in order to make a project happen. They're just workers. So I went and I sat down with her because this was going to be a really, to me, I was going to work with Lumet and we were going to make a serious film that didn't really exactly happen because we weren't, we didn't have the hours in the day to really make it.

Kevin Goetz (05:16):

But you did say to her, if you don't want me to do it,

Sharon Stone (05:18):

I wasn't going to make it. 

Kevin Goetz (05:19):

I wasn't going to make it. No. And that’s something.

Sharon Stone (05:21):

Because there's no way I would disrespect her work. And I did feel in the end that the project did not wholly represent their good work. I was sorry that the film was not nearly as good as her version. It's really important to try to respect what they did.

Kevin Goetz (05:37):

When you started. And we didn't grow up as kids together. But knowing what I know about you from the girl from Meadville, Pennsylvania, who was really into books, essentially an introvert and very heady and intellectual to go into the field you ultimately chose has always seemed so kind of counterintuitive. What did it, even to enter the Ms. Crawford County pageant in the day, back when you were 17?

Sharon Stone (06:06):

We were broke. And Miss Crawford County was a sub pageant of the Miss America Pageant. And by winning Miss Crawford County, I got a partial scholarship to college. And I also had an academic scholarship because I was going to college at age 15. So it really helped because my dad was a factory worker who worked swing shift an hour away from home. So this was a hardscrabble upbringing. My mom was an Avon lady. Right. So we grew our own vegetables on our property and he shot deer. And that's what we ate all winter. Wow. Which I hate. And I ate a lot of rabbit.

Kevin Goetz (06:48):

Did they clean them?

Sharon Stone (06:49):

Yes. That's what we had to do. And when I would, did you come home from school? Yeah, there was a deer gutted hanging on my swing set. Wow. And at, you know, Thanksgiving, there'd be a big turkey pinned on the clothesline. And those are like probably seven feet across with their wings spread out.

Kevin Goetz (07:05):

I just want to say that your dad taught both Neil and me how to shoot guns. Yes, he did in Pennsylvania. And Neil turned out to be a good shot. I was less successful. I'm not going to lie to you, but Neil was pretty good. In fact, we kept a target in our library. Yes. Where we have Neil's beautiful shots in minor somewhere off in the ether <laugh>.

Sharon Stone (07:27):

Right, right.

Kevin Goetz (07:27):

But those were such special times being with the family.

Sharon Stone (07:30):

I mean, we grew up, I learned to shoot a gun when I was five.

Kevin Goetz (07:34):

Wow.

Sharon Stone (07:34):

Yeah. And that's how I, you know, broke my clavicle from the recoil of the shotgun. My clavicle is like this from the shotgun.

Kevin Goetz (07:43):

And you learned all the safety. 

Sharon Stone (07:45):

And before I was allowed to drive.

Kevin Goetz (07:47):

Right. All the kids had to?

Sharon Stone (07:48):

Yeah. Before we were allowed to drive, we'd come down for breakfast and there'd be a handgun disassembled on our plate at breakfast. And we had to clean it and reassemble it.

Kevin Goetz (07:59):

Ooh, that's mysterious stuff right there.

Sharon Stone (08:01):

That's right. Because you're driving a weapon.

Kevin Goetz (08:05):

Yeah. Wow. 

Sharon Stone (08:06):

Was the lesson. Wow. So we had to be able to change the oil, the fan belt and the tires before we were allowed to take the car out.

Kevin Goetz (08:14):

Okay. So I know I asked you this question, but you were doing an interview with Oprah, and I remember you called me the night of the interview to tell me that it went well. But you told me one particular story. And I remember adding to the story and it has stuck with me 'cause it was so upsetting and yet informative of who you are, who you became. Okay. And the story was these little witches who were on the playground. You were about seven years old, if I recall. You were reading a book and you were not popular. And these girls who were the popular girls came over to you at recess and one of them walked over to you, the most popular. And you thought she was going to ask you to join them.

Sharon Stone (08:54):

Oh, I was older. Oh. I was actually like in about the fifth grade.

Kevin Goetz (8:58):

So that would've been what, 9, 10?

Sharon Stone (09:01):

9 or 10? Yeah. Yeah.

Kevin Goetz (09:01):

And what did she do?

Sharon Stone (09:04):

I had like, two of my friends were my friends and I was shy, really shy. And there was this girl, she was like the queen of all the girls. You know, there's the clique and they're all the…

Kevin Goetz (09:17):

The mean girls.

Sharon Stone (09:18):

Yeah. They're the pretty girls, let's be honest. And they're the popular girls. And they're the girls you always wish would like you. And they all floated over and they were smiling and laughing. And I thought that they were going to talk to me. And the main girl stepped up. I was so like, it's the moment. And she slapped me across the face. And they all started laughing and they walked away. And I was so stunned. And I went and sat against the school wall till recess was over. And then I went in the bathroom and her handprint was on my face. And I didn't want to go to class 'cause I was so humiliated that her handprint was on my face. And so I hid in the bathroom for the rest of the day 'cause her handprint was still on my face all day long. And it's kind of a thing because Hollywood is a lot like that. There's a lot of the club. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>. And there's a lot of people who play with you all the time. And then when you don't give the right answer, you're sitting against the schoolyard wall and then they're back in class making fun of you. And you're in there with a handprint on your face and you don't know what happened. And it takes a long time to recognize that this is the unhealthy social aspect of life in general.

Kevin Goetz (10:52):

When we talked that evening, I remember saying something very, I don't know if you remember it, but I remember it really clearly 'cause I felt it done to me. And that was that these girls tried to slap the different out of you.

Sharon Stone (11:06):

Yes, they do. They do. They try to slap the different out of you.

Kevin Goetz (11:10):

And that to me was something so relatable. And so I go back to with the original question of why do you go into acting where you're going to subject yourself to, yes, praise and of course, but of course ridicule and, and all sorts of other things.

Sharon Stone (11:28):

Lots of ridicule. Particularly in my case, because I really am the proverbial black sheep. I really am the proverbial dark horse because I know that it is the antisocial qualities that I have. It is the different thing about me that makes me special. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>.

Kevin Goetz (11:49):

Mmm-hmm.

Sharon Stone (11:51):

It is the…

Kevin Goetz (11:51):

Oh, I always said you were a character actor locked in a leading lady's body.

Sharon Stone (11:54):

It is.

Kevin Goetz (11:54):

It's, I mean, I've always said that.

Sharon Stone (11:56):

It is so the truth about me, that's why the films like Casino and Basic Instinct. Or even The Muse are films that are so right for me.

Kevin Goetz (12:05):

Oh no. How about Alpha Dog?

Sharon Stone (12:06):

Alpha Dog was such a wonderful film.

Kevin Goetz (12:08):

How about Bobby?

Sharon Stone (12:10):

Bobby? Amazing. But these are, these are also, you've gotta.

Kevin Goetz (12:14):

Those are character roles.

Sharon Stone (12:15):

Yes. But they're also, you've gotta think about who the directors were.

Kevin Goetz (12:18):

That's fair.

Sharon Stone (12:18):

Right. We're looking at Casavettes once again, we're looking at that familial understanding of work. Right? When we look at The Muse, we're looking at Albert Brooks who is about the work. He's not about anything else. When we look at a Casino, we're looking at Martin Scorsese. It's about the work. When we look at Basic Instinct, we're looking at Paul Verhoeven. It's about the work. When we look at people who are frivolous or superficial or ego-tripping, they're not going to like me. And they're not going to understand me and they're not going to like me. And they're going to call me names because they're going to think that my thoughts and my ideas and my questions are about them.

Kevin Goetz (13:05):

Or their insecurities.

Sharon Stone (13:07):

I don't know. But they're not going to think that they're about the work.

Kevin Goetz (13:12):

Hmm. It's well put.

Sharon Stone (13:13):

I remember sitting down with someone who said, I've written a part for you. And I said, okay. And they said, well, you don't sound very excited. And I said, well, I don't know what it is yet. And they were just so offended right off the bat that I didn't demonstrate exhilaration at the very thought. And I thought, well, I can't get excited until I know what it is, because I won't know if I'm actually going to be able to give you what you would like to have from me. 

Kevin Goetz (13:44):

Of course. It's ridiculous

Sharon Stone (13:44):

Because for me it's about the work, not about my ego that's so thrilled that you wrote something with me in mind. Because I've seen a lot of that from top to bottom. And sometimes even the lower level things might be the better things. Of course. Because it's about if we can come together and create the work.

Kevin Goetz (14:06):

I don't think I've known you to ever, and I mean ever, I'm going to go on a limb here. Say that you ever accepted a role for the money.

Sharon Stone (14:13):

No.

Kevin Goetz (14:14):

It was always about, there was something in it. Now it may not have come out the way you wanted it to. No. Thought it should have.

Sharon Stone (14:19):

But people think when I ask for more money on things, 'cause they want to say, well, she's just about the money.

Kevin Goetz (14:27):

I wish many of the actresses in Hollywood knew that often your request for other money was a statement of pay me what you'd pay the other guy.

Sharon Stone (14:36):

Exactly.

Kevin Goetz (14:37):

I mean, come on.

Sharon Stone (14:38):

Because I will get a call that says, this is a hundred million dollars movie and we're going to pay this leading man who frankly nobody's ever really heard of 7 million Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>. But we want to pay you to be the leading actress at 500,000. And I'll say, no, I made 500,000 on Basic Instinct 30 years ago.

Kevin Goetz (15:00):

Before you were famous.

Sharon Stone (15:01):

And now I've done a hundred films. That's right. So you're going to pay this unknown guy this out of a hundred million dollars budget. I think instead you should probably pay us each three and a half. 

Kevin Goetz (15:13):

Absolutely.

Sharon Stone (15:13):

Because I think that's fair and reasonable. Because if I take it all over the country, it's going to be an event. And if I take it to other countries, it's going to be an event. Because people do know me

Kevin Goetz (15:24):

And I say, sadly, there are actresses who we know who would be lining up to take that job. And that's not helping the situation. It’s continuing that…

Sharon Stone (15:33):

Well, it doesn't help across the board. Because what happens is we're getting studio executives that aren't educated in the process of filmmaking. They're educated in the process of budget making. Well, that's terrific for you, but in the end, somebody in this process has to have the fortitude to understand that people have to be educated in the process of film watching. Because people go to the movies for many reasons. But a lot of it is because they want to have a feeling with the people they're with in the movies. They want to be engaged with the people that they're sitting with. Mm. They don't go to be alone with the film. They go to be with the person that's sitting next to them with the film.

Kevin Goetz (16:19):

Yes.

Sharon Stone (16:20):

And people that are doing the budgeting of the film have taken that piece of the experience out of their cognition of how films should be made. This is why the 40 to $60 million film isn't happening because people have forgotten that people want to go with somebody and have a film experience. These 40 to $60 million erotic thrillers, thrillers, romance, date movies like that movie with Sidney Sweeney. Nobody wanted to pay attention to this movie. Right. Perfect Date movie. Perfect.

Kevin Goetz (16:55):

And Glen Powell.

Sharon Stone (16:57):

And Glen Powell and everybody.

Kevin Goetz (16:58):

And what a sexy combination.

Sharon Stone (17:00):

Well, he's Top Gun. Right? Like, I didn't even remember this kid's name. I saw him at the Vanity Fair Party. I was like, Top Gun, get over here. Let's take a picture together. Right.

Kevin Goetz (17:09):

Oh, I saw that picture. Right. It was wonderful.

Sharon Stone (17:10):

Right. Because he's devastatingly charismatic. She is absolutely adorable and sexy and talented. Put those two together on a date night movie. This is a winner. But these studio heads have forgotten why it's a winner.

Kevin Goetz (17:26):

Will Gluck knew, he was a guest on this podcast, Will Gluck the director. Right. Who said exactly that. He said he knew by putting those two together

Sharon Stone (17:34):

Put it in the theater that was going to sizzle theater on Friday and Saturday nights. People want to go to the movies. They want to hold hands, they want to make out. They want to see, is your leg going to touch my leg? Are you going to drop popcorn in my lap? Oh. Oh. I mean, let's not forget the real reason we go to movies. What movies are about.

Kevin Goetz (17:55):

I hope young people do want to do that. I'm looking at two right here. Of course, I'm not sure they, I we did because we had had nowhere else to go.

Sharon Stone (18:04):

But in the..

Kevin Goetz (18:04):

Escaped from the Planet of the Apes man, my 13th birthday.

Sharon Stone (18:07):

But in the…

Kevin Goetz (18:08):

With pizza.

Sharon Stone (18:09):

In this social media, we're going to cancel everybody if you breathe on me baloney. Because we've all become so fragile that we can't talk to anybody. Or you're going to have a nervous breakdown. If someone holds your hand in the movie theater, are you going to cancel them? I mean, come on. Right. We have to get back into an area where people are together again. And movies are part of that.

Kevin Goetz (18:35):

100%.

Sharon Stone (18:35):

It's the way we learn to communicate with people. Remember Garbo Speaks, that tells everything. I went and saw your movies when I was pregnant and when I felt ugly and I cried with you. Yeah. Yeah. And I laughed with you. You made me feel this way and you made me feel that way. That's what movies are for.

Kevin Goetz (18:56):

And you want to have somebody that's the conscience of that process.

Sharon Stone (19:00):

Exactly. Because intelligence isn't just intellectualism, it's emotional intelligence. And they have to meet. And that's not being a diva and that's not being an icon and that's not being a pain in the ass. That's being an artist at its highest form of efficiency and humanity and service to the public.

Kevin Goetz (19:25):

Yeah.

Sharon Stone (19:25):

But the way we need to serve artists is that the organizers actually need to get organized. 

And the studio organizers need to remember why we're making films.

Kevin Goetz (19:36):

In the first place. Yeah. So in the beginning, I want to just go back to you get the Crown of Miss Crawford County, you then get discovered as a model by the great Eileen Ford who actually invited you to live with her.

Sharon Stone (19:49):

Well actually Muhammad Ali was at the Miss Pennsylvania pageant 'cause if you won Miss Crawford County, you went to Miss Pennsylvania.

Kevin Goetz (19:57):

And he saw you there.

Sharon Stone (19:58):

Yeah, because it was in Hershey, Pennsylvania. And he was there on business.

Kevin Goetz (20:03):

<laugh>. No way.

Sharon Stone (20:03):

So of course he went into the pageant 'cause

Kevin Goetz (20:07):

'cause he did, because

Sharon Stone (20:08):

<laugh> and Ali called my dad.

Kevin Goetz (20:11):

I never knew this.

Sharon Stone (20:12):

He called Joe. Joe never told you? No. Ali called my dad and he said, Mr. Stone, I saw your daughter in the Miss Pennsylvania pageant and I want her to be in The Greatest. And my dad said, well, Mr. Ali <laugh>, you know Joe, it's how very nice of you to call. But my daughter is going to go back to college. My daughter's very intelligent and she's going to get her college degree. She's not going to be in movies. And Ali said, you know, Mr. Stone, you could hide your daughter under bushel basket, but she's still going to be a movie star.

Kevin Goetz (20:50):

Wow.

Sharon Stone (20:51):

And dad said, we'll see about that.

Kevin Goetz (20:53):

And then what happened?

Sharon Stone (20:55):

Then mom saw Wilhelmina and Eileen Ford were on the Merv Griffin show.

Kevin Goetz (21:02):

Oh my God.

Sharon Stone (21:03):

And that was when Mike got in trouble.

Kevin Goetz (21:06):

Mike, your brother? 

Sharon Stone (21:07):

Yes. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>. And because he was going to prison and just all hell was breaking loose everywhere and it was such a dangerous time.

Kevin Goetz (21:18):

Early seventies. Yeah.

Sharon Stone (21:20):

For everybody in our family. And everything was so scary. They decided that they thought finally they didn't want to let me go 'cause I was so young that maybe it would be safer for me to go. And that's when they decided that I could go to New York.

Kevin Goetz (21:36):

And were you 16, 17?

Sharon Stone (21:38):

When they finally let me go, I was about to turn 19.

Kevin Goetz (21:42):

So even though you could have left?

Sharon Stone (21:44):

I was a junior in college. But you gotta understand. I know, I know. I hadn't even been on an escalator until I was 16.

Kevin Goetz (21:50):

This is what I was trying to explain to our listeners earlier. You were this more introverted book reading great student.

Sharon Stone (21:58):

From a farming community. And like Danny Weaver, my best friend who eventually produced Phil Donahue, got his driver's license and we skipped school and went to Pittsburgh to ride the escalators when I was 16. Because that was the biggest thing you could do <laugh>. Right. We went in his Volkswagen Bug to Pittsburgh to ride the escalators.

Kevin Goetz (22:21):

That before or after you visited Spencer's gifts?

Sharon Stone (22:23):

Right, exactly.

Kevin Goetz (22:25):

With the blue lights. Yes. Remember all the and the psychedelic stuff there. <laugh>. Oh god. All right. So um, so wait. You go and you go to Eileen Ford first?

Sharon Stone (22:36):

Well, I went first to Wilhelmina, but Wilhelmina had cancer. Oh. And she knew that she was going to die. She had already lost her hair. She was wearing a beautiful Hermes scarf on her head. She spent a long time talking to mom. We went to see Eileen. Eileen wasn't nice, you know, Wilhelmina was really nice, but Eileen was tough as nails. She said, I'd like to throw you down the flight of stairs and bounce 10 pounds off your ass to start with <laugh>. That was my Hello.

Kevin Goetz (23:08):

Did she see you as doing runway?

Sharon Stone (23:10):

No, because those girls, it was like the Pat Cleveland period.

Kevin Goetz (23:14):

Because you were, how tall are you? You're

Sharon Stone (23:15):

Like five, eight and a half. Yeah. But that wasn't tall enough. Wow. And…

Kevin Goetz (23:19):

You were also more shapely.

Sharon Stone (23:21):

I took over Cheryl Tieg’s accounts because she did all the sportswear and the swimsuits. So I took over all those golf, tennis. I was a Charlie Perfume girl.

Kevin Goetz (23:33):

This is at 19, 20 and 21. And you're making some money?

Sharon Stone (23:36):

Yes. Oh yes. You're making some money.

Kevin Goetz (23:37):

You lived with Eileen though, at first, right?

Sharon Stone (23:39):

I lived with one of the agents, not Eile. Oh. And then I was the Colon Catalina swimsuit girl. I was Coppertone.

Kevin Goetz (23:48):

Oh.

Sharon Stone (23:49):

You know, get a good reaction. Show 'em a Coppertone Tan commercial.

Kevin Goetz (23:53):

I still remember Jody Foster’s commercial.

Sharon Stone (23:55):

Jody’s. And I did all these cosmetic ads. I did Coca-Cola D Sprite commercials and DeBeers Diamonds and tons of commercials. Clairol and Avon and Buff Puff. Every beauty contract you could possibly have. I had 'em all.

Kevin Goetz (24:14):

Wow. We'll be back in a moment with the great Sharon Stone.

 

Announcer: (24:21)
Get a glimpse into a secret part of Hollywood that few are aware of and that filmmakers rarely talk about in the new book Audienceology by Kevin Goetz. Each chapter is filled with never-before-revealed inside stories and interviews from famous studio chiefs, directors, producers, and movie stars, bringing the art and science of audienceology into focus. Audienceology, How Moviegoers Shape the Films We Love, from Tiller Press at Simon and Schuster. Available now.


Kevin Goetz: (24:53)
We're back with my dear friend Sharon Stone. Sharon, when did you decide to move into, because I love your first role. It has to do with roller skates.

Sharon Stone: (25:01)
It's acting. Well, I made friends with this great extras casting agent named Ricardo Bertoni in New York. Ricardo had known Sly Stallone and had helped him get Rocky up and going. Wow. And Ricardo was really sweet to me and very dramatic. And he had called me one day because Julia Taylor was casting for Woody.

Kevin Goetz: (25:27)
Mm-Hmm. Woody’s casting director.

Sharon Stone: (26:07)
And said that Woody was casting this new film called Stardust Memories and that he was going to see extras. And you go immediately.

Kevin Goetz: (26:16)
Woody casts his extras. I was in Radio Days as an extra.

Sharon Stone: (26:19)
Oh, I didn't  know that.

Kevin Goetz: (25:36)
Yeah. And he cast his extras.

Sharon Stone: (25:38)
He cast all his own extras. And so come immediately now this is before cell phones. You would call into your agency or you would call into Ricardo or you call in from a payphone.

Kevin Goetz: (25:42)
Or a pager. Beep beep beep. You knew something exciting was going to happen. I booked it or I’m on hold.

Sharon Stone: (25:54)
Your pager would come off old. So I didn't have money. So I roller skated to everything . And that was my extra. So I roller skated all over New York.

Kevin Goetz: (26:07)
I would give money to see you rollerskating on Third Avenue.

Sharon Stone: (26:11)
Clunk, clunk, clunk, clunk. And I was like six one in roller skates.

Kevin Goetz: (26:13)
Where did you live by the way?

Sharon Stone: (26:15)
I lived at that point in a fifth floor walk up on Elizabeth and Houseton first across from, there was a Texaco station there then so, like a block from CBGBs. Oh God. Like really down, like above the Italian bakery for Rayo's. But it was great because they looked after me, Ray and his people really made sure I was safe coming and going.

Kevin Goetz: (26:41)
So you go up to Woody Allen.

Sharon Stone: (26:43)
So I skated over to this, it was outdoors somewhere, almost like at a bus stop. And I got in this line and I had my huge modeling portfolio that I carried around with me. And I went in the line, I clumped up to the front of the line. And she…

Kevin Goetz: (26:59)
But the roller skates too.

Sharon Stone: (27:00)
Pom.

Kevin Goetz: (27:00)
Tonk this where we had the very intricate Foley effects.

Sharon Stone: (27:06)
Oh yes. And you know the big wheels. And I get up there, I give the book, and then she turns around and she hands the book behind her. Juliet. Yeah. And it was Woody. And he was sitting in the bus stop.

Kevin Goetz: (27:20)
Right. Because he's probably shooting there that day or something. Right?

Sharon Stone: (27:22)
Something. Yeah. And so he looks at my thing and then he talks to her and she says, Woody would like you to sit down next to him. Go in and sit down. So I go in, I sit down, I sit there and I don't say anything and he doesn't say anything. And I sit there for a certain amount of time and nothing happens. And eventually she says, okay, you can go. I think, uh, alright. Now over the many years I've experienced a lot of this where the men that I'm working with on films will come in my trailer and sit down next to me, say nothing. Do nothing. Hour goes by and they leave.

Kevin Goetz: (28:01)
But are they just trying to gauge chemistry?

Sharon Stone: (28:08)
I never decide. I say nothing. I do nothing.

Kevin Goetz: (28:09)
I say nothing. I do nothing.

Sharon Stone: (28:11)
Right. Yeah.

Kevin Goetz: (28:13)
So you get the job.

Sharon Stone: (28:14)
Then I get called. You're going to be an extra, dress in all white. Come down to this elementary school. We're using their cafeteria as the holding place. I come and of course it's me. So I bring a giant bag of books with me 'cause I'm like, I'm going to be there all day. You know? So I bring my books, I'm sitting there reading this book. And Michael Pizer, who was his AD at the time.

Kevin Goetz: (28:37)
Oh, Michael Pizer. Right? Great guy,

Sharon Stone: (28:39)
Right. Comes out and he's like, there's a girl who was supposed to be in the film and I forget what happened to her, but she didn't come. And there's a part that shoots today and Woody wants to see you for it.

Kevin Goetz: (28:55)
That wasn't the original one you went for?

Sharon Stone: (28:57)
No, I was just going to be an extra. Oh. And I said, okay when? And he goes, now. He's going to come out and talk to you. And I'm like, okay. And time goes by and he comes out and he sits down next to me and Woody's like, so what are you reading? I'm like, I'm reading this book. It's a children's book. It's about how to explain infinity to a child. And he's like, that's absolutely fascinating. And so we're looking at this book and we're talking about infinity and we had this like 10-minute conversation about infinity and physics. And then he goes, okay. And he leaves and then Pizer comes back and he goes, okay, it's time for you to get in hair and makeup. And I went back and they put me in that tight dress and they were so nice to me, the hair and makeup people.

Kevin Goetz: (29:48)
It was like thirties or forties or something?

Sharon Stone: (29:49)
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And they put that real gardenia in my hair. And I had never even seen a real gardenia at this point in my life. And it smelled so beautiful. And they were so nice to me. And then I went to the set and Gordon Willis shot everything imaginable. And I was just watching them and it was unbelievable on this movie set. And they had this train and they had all this stuff in a studio on a sound stage. And I was just like, come on. This was unbelievable. And I was sitting there and I was, I was having the time of my life. And so I was there for a few days and then someone came and talked to me and they said, look, they've seen the dailies. They can't pay you what you're making as a model, but Mr. Willis and Mr. Allen think that this is really where you belong on a movie set and they'd like to ask you to stay for a couple of weeks. How would you feel about that? And I said, I feel great about it. And they said, they want to expand your part. Are you willing to do that? You won't make what you're making modeling. I said, I'm willing to do it and thanks very much. And so they upped the part.

Kevin Goetz: (31:02)
And it was a wave that is sort of famous, isn't it? That picture that.

Sharon Stone: (31:20)
Yeah, and the kiss on the window and everything. You had a kiss on the window. And then Pizer went on to a Claude Lelouch film with Jimmy Caan. And he called me one morning and he's like, the girl that was supposed to do this part got stung in the face with a bee. Can you come over?

Kevin Goetz: (31:22)
You're the freaking understudy that keeps going on.

Sharon Stone: (31:23)
And I was like, sure. And I took a shower and I came over and he goes, what took so long? Why did it take so long for you to get here? And I said, 'cause I was in bed when you called me and I had to take a shower. And he's like, get with it.

Kevin Goetz: (31:36)
And this is Mike?

Sharon Stone: (31:37)
Yeah. And I was like, I'm with it. Are you kidding? I'm with it. And he's like, well move it. And I was like, right, I'm already wrong. I'm, what am I doing? You know? And I went, and then I had got in bed with Jimmy and the whole scene was me in bed with Jimmy and he flirted with me like crazy. And I was like, keep it to yourself pal. And we just got this repartee going.

Kevin Goetz: (31:58)
Did you get on with him?

Sharon Stone: (31:59):
Like a house on fire. Because I was, you know, wonderful actor. I have brothers so him like flirting and goofing around with me. I'm not, I'm not soft. Right. You know, I know how to roll with a bunch of guys. Sure. And I'm not a, you know…

Kevin Goetz: (32:16):
Wallflower.

Sharon Stone: (32:22):
Well I know the difference between a misdemeanor and a felony . You know what I mean? I do. I don't Me Too somebody for a misdemeanor. Absolutely. Like I have a great sense of humor and I actually enjoy the camaraderie, you know? So we got along like a house on fire and for his entire life he looked after me.

Kevin Goetz: (32:37):
Oh, well that's where I want to go next. Listeners, thank you for joining me today for part one of Sharon's interview. We will continue our conversation on the next episode of Don't Kill the Messenger with the great and iconic Sharon Stone to find out when fame really took hold for her. Until then, I'm Kevin Goetz and to you, our listeners, I appreciate you being part of the movie-making process. Your opinions matter.

 

Host: Kevin Goetz
Guest: Sharon Stone
Producer: Kari Campano
Writers: Kevin Goetz, Darlene Hayman, and Kari Campano
Audio Engineer: Gary Forbes, DG Entertainment