To celebrate the Playboy Interview’s 50th anniversary, the editors of Playboy have culled 50 of its most (in)famous Interviews and will publish them over the course of 50 weekdays (from September 4, 2012 to November 12, 2012) via Amazon’s Kindle Direct platform. Today we look back at the past week’s interviews from John & Yoko to Ian Fleming.Week 10
John Lennon and Yoko Ono Should Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis have stayed together because I used to like them together? What is this game of doing things because other people want it? The whole Beatle idea was to do what you want, right? To take your own responsibility.
Muhammed Ali I had to decide, if it would come to me having to give up one or the other, what was most important to me, my religion or my fighting. I made up my mind that I could give up fighting and never look back.
Marlon Brando Where are the great artists today? Name one. When you look at Rembrandt or Baudelaire or listen to the Discourses of Epictetus, you know the quality of men is not the same. There are no giants today.
Ian Fleming Strangely enough, many politicians seem to like my books, I think perhaps because politicians like solutions, with everything properly tied up at the end. Politicians always hope for neat solutions, you know, but so rarely can they find them.Week 9
Michael Moore Only 1 million to 2 million people watch Fox News at any given time. Let’s not waste our time worrying about something as irrelevant as Fox News. If you have cable, it’s a great thing to tune in to for a laugh. It’s better than Comedy Central.
Rush Limbaugh When I say I’m incapable of a successful courtship, it’s because I don’t feel that I can be myself totally. I hate being coy when I don’t want to be. I hate acting uninterested when I don’t want to. But you must. Nice guys never get laid.
Stephen King I won’t sleep without a light on in the room and, needless to say, I’m very careful to see that the blankets are tucked tight under my legs so I won’t wake up in the middle of the night with a clammy hand clutching my ankle.
John Wayne I’ve always followed my father’s advice: He told me, first, to always keep my word and, second, to never insult anybody unintentionally. If I insult you, you can be goddamn sure I intend to.
Hunter S. Thompson I occasionally indulge in a little speed—which I deplore and do not advocate—but you know, when the car runs out of gas, you have to use something. The only drug I really count on is adrenaline. I’m basically an adrenaline junkie.Week 8
Richard Branson I turned down a chance to go after the land speed record because I felt it was too much like tossing a coin—heads you die, tails you live—and that’s unacceptable.
Michelangelo Antonioni Perhaps when I can no longer look and wonder, when I believe in nothing—then I might need something else.
Pete Rose If I had been busted for drugs instead of gambling, I’d still be managing the Reds and baseball would be paying for my rehab.
Bette Davis If you don’t dare to be hated, you’re never going to get there. To be an uncontroversial actor is nothing to aim for.
Milton Friedman “If a consumer finds he’s being sold rotten meat at the grocery store, he has the very best protection agency available: the market. He simply stops trading at that store and moves to another.Week 7
*Jon Stewart * Some of us are optimists, some are pessimists. Some see the glass half full, some see the glass half empty. And some are sitting on shards of glass and trying to pick them out of their ass.
*Tina Fey * I don’t understand the cultural obsession with these weird mental children with orange skin and bleached-out Barbie hair and boyish hips and big fake choppers. They’re so close to being trannies. I sometimes feel like, Who are these creatures?
Howard Stern I think free speech is the single greatest freedom we have in this country. For anyone to say that something shouldn’t be said hurts that freedom. The rule I follow is this: I should say anything that I think is funny.Week 6
Fidel Castro Money does not motivate me; material goods do not motivate me. Likewise, the lust for glory, fame and prestige does not motivate me. I really think that ideas motivate me. Ideas, convictions are what spur a man to struggle in the first place.
Lance Armstrong When baseball players were charged with using steroids, what was their defense? Nothing. Saying ‘It’s not true.’ Whereas my defense is hundreds of drug controls, at races and everywhere else. The testers could roll up here right this minute.
Ayn Rand The man without a purpose is a man who drifts at the mercy of random feelings or unidentified urges and is capable of any evil, because he is totally out of control of his own life.
Johnny Depp You can’t be normal, not with people hitting you up at any given moment with bizarre requests. You can’t just hang out and have a cup of coffee and pick your nose or [reaching for his crotch] adjust your package, you know?
Stephen Hawking The history of human civilization has been one of gradual discovery of more and more and more scientific laws that govern a bigger and bigger and bigger part of our experience. I see no reason why it should not continue until we have a complete unified theory for everything in the universe.Week 5
Mark Cuban All the rules, the conventional wisdom, all the things that people said had to be done a certain way, I would test. Every chance I had and everyplace I went, I would put a toe in the water to see if those things were real. It taught me that just because something is the way everybody says it’s supposed to be doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be questioned.
O.J. Simpson I feel in my heart that I got off because I was innocent, but I don’t know if I could have proven my innocence if I didn’t have the money. And that’s a shame. Yes, it is a shame that in this country it costs so much to get good representation.
Timothy Leary The three inevitable goals of the LSD session are to discover and make love with God, to discover and make love with yourself, and to discover and make love with a woman.
Betty Friedan I’m not sure it’s true that successful women seem as macho as any of their male counterparts. But when you are the first woman in any field, it’s very hard not to follow the male model. There is no other model. It’s only when women approach critical mass that you begin to see them show characteristics of leadership that really use the qualities associated with women.Week 4
SNL Cast & Lorne Michaels When I first heard that the ribbing Ford was getting hurt his feelings, it bothered me. On the other hand, he was a man in the public eye, who had to be held accountable for falling on little girls in wheelchairs, just the way Nixon should be held accountable for bombing Cambodia.
Stanley Kubrick The whole idea that a movie should be seen only once is an extension of our traditional conception of the film as an ephemeral entertainment rather than as a visual work of art.
Seth MacFarlane I’m so critical of everything I do that whenever we start writing a new episode of Family Guy I always have a minor panic attack; I worry we used up all the funny in the last episode and won’t be able to do it again.
Matt Groening We have turned a few things down, believe it or not. I know it’s hard to tell. We turned down Simpsons slot machines in Vegas because we thought, You know, you have to draw the line somewhere.Week 3
The Beatles Groups like this are normally not friends, you know; they’re just four people out there thrown together to make an act. There may be two of them who sort of go off and are friends, you know, but…
Jay-Z I think God protects anyone with a good heart. People say, ‘That’s a comfort blanket so you can do whatever the fuck you want.’ But my intention was good. I was in a place where there’s no hope. It was like, Fuck, man, I ain’t going to continue to live like this.
Keith Richards I dreamt this riff—I don’t do that very often—and that was the first time it had happened to me. I had my guitar next to the bed and the first Philips cassette recorder, and I just woke up, picked up the guitar and…’I can’t get no… satisfaction…I can’t get no…satisfaction.…[snores]
Metallica It’s pretty clear that the future is selling your music online. But common sense will tell you that you cannot do that if the guy next door is giving it away for free.
Bob Dylan The myth of the starving artist is a myth. The big bankers and prominent young ladies who buy art started it. They just want to keep the artist under their thumb. Who says an artist can’t have any money? Look at Picasso.Week 2
Robert Redford The excess attention always made me uncomfortable. I never liked feeling it was all about my looks. You want to be seen for what you can do, not for your hair or your blue eyes or your teeth.
Mike Tyson I’m always trying to be cool, take care of my children, not kill nobody, not say anything anymore. I always do my best to be cool. I know I’m going to blow one day.
Ray Bradbury The way to teach in this world is to pretend you’re not teaching. Science fiction offers the chance to pretend to look the other way while teaching. Science fiction is also a great way to pretend you are writing about the future when in reality you are attacking the recent past and the present.
Gary Hart It isn’t just doom and gloom. This new world opens tremendous possibilities in the coalition that is building against terrorism. We now have an unprecedented opportunity to bring nations like Russia, China and Indonesia into what’s usually called the Western alliance.
Bill Gates As there is progress, which is partly advances in technology, in a certain sense the world gets richer. That is, the things we do that use a lot of resources and time can be done more efficiently. So people wonder, Will there be jobs? Will there be things to do?Week 1
Jack Nicholson Before, you could hurl the kitchen sink at me and I’d keep on smiling until I got where I thought I wanted to get. Let’s just say that my libido will always exceed my possibilities.
Martin Luther King It is still my basic article of faith that social justice can be achieved and democracy advanced only to the degree that there is firm adherence to nonviolent action and resistance in the pursuit of social justice.
Joe Namath I spent the nights before the Jets’ two biggest games last year—for the A.F.L. championship and the Superbowl—with girls. But I don’t consider that bad or foolish of me.
Miles Davis Trumpet players, like anybody else, are individualized by their different ideas and styles. The thing to judge in any jazz artist is does the man project, and does he have ideas.