Movie star Kurt Russell made waves last week for strongly disagreeing with an anti-gun reporter spouting gun-banning ideas. But not content to let his comments fade away, Russell once again waded into the contentious issue very publicly, likely infuriating many of his Hollywood pals.
Early in December, while he was on a press junket to promote his latest film, “The Hateful Eight,” the 64-year-old Russell was confronted by an interviewer who tried to nudge the star toward a condemnation of guns. But Russell went straight for the jugular and fully repudiated the reporter’s anti-Second Amendment rant.
Curiously, the star’s new film was directed by Quentin Tarantino, whose movies are known for their frequent and intense gun violence.
Since that encounter with the interviewer, Russell has been beset by liberals attacking his position on the right to bear arms, and this week he’s once again answered the critics and explained where he stands politically.
The truth of his political ideals is “worse” than the liberal attackers think, the actor declared.
“I wasn’t a Republican, I was worse: I was a hardcore libertarian,” he said to the Daily Beast’s Marlow Stern.
The actor famed for roles such as “Snake Plissken” in the 1981 cult classic “Escape From New York,” and even a guest stint on a Man From UNCLE episode way back in 1964, said that he came to his libertarian ideals at a young age when he realized he couldn’t “buy into a political culture” in Tinsel Town.
He went on to say that our founding fathers were “pretty radical guys, and damn smart” with “great ideas” and he found the liberal ideology too divergent from their original ideals.
“I believe in limited Constitutional government, free market capitalism, reach for the brass ring,” Russell avowed. “There’s this place where you can go do that and don’t step on anybody’s toes and still try to reach for the brass ring.”
He also said he appreciated attending a recent Cato Institute gathering because it was “a place where I can have a conversation and not be laughed at or smirked at” as usually happens at Hollywood get-togethers. He also noted pointedly that he is “politically persona non grata” in Hollyweird.
Russell then had harsh words for a denizen of Hollywood who has tried to make a name for himself for his brand of so-called libertarianism. Bill Maher, Russell said, is a “nice guy” but a “faux-libertarian.”
Still, the famed actor said that he isn’t that interested in spouting his political ideas from a soapbox and regularly turns down invitations to do political talk shows. He’d prefer not to saddle fans with his personal politics, apparently.
In fact, Russell said that he would rather keep political discussions on a one-on-one basis.
“I always had a good time talking about things with people,” Russell said. “The thing people did get to know about me if they engaged me is that I’m fair, I’m pretty energetic, and I’m pretty knowledgeable. I don’t pop off without finding out about stuff — and I like finding out about stuff, and don’t have that much of an agenda about it.”
In fact, earlier in the interview, just as the Daily Beast writer broached the subject of politics, Russell immediately said how he like to keep such things out of the public eye.
“Here’s the thing,” Russell said of the interview and his current junkets, “I’m just selling a movie. I never go out there to do publicity about anything other than the movie. I have my political point of view, of course; I’m an American and I’m entitled to it. But I don’t like espousing it publicly.”
From this interview, it is clear that Russell is quite unlike so many other Hollywood actors whom many may call blowhards for their constant seeking of the limelight in order to spew their political ideas.