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"The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" Transcript
June 17, 2003
Transcribed by Tessa, edited by Eric Bana Central

[Eric walks onto the stage - audience applauds]

Jay Leno: Hey mate, good to see you! How are you?

Drew Barrymore: It's a pleasure, nice to meet you!

Jay: Have a seat. Good to finally meet you. I uh -

Eric: [Looks at the mug on Jay's desk] We've got a cup full of ice.

Jay: [With an Australian accent] Thereís a cup full of ice right there, mate!

Jay: See, you first came to my attention - I know you won an Academy Award in your native Australia for "Chopper." If you ever see this film, itís a brilliant, brilliant film.

Eric: Thank you, thank you, Jay.

Jay: Just wanted to get that out of the way so people know.

Eric: That's very kind.

Jay: Now whereíd you just come from? I know you got a bit of jet lag.

Eric: Just a little bit. Iím in Denver, right?

Jay: Yeah Denver!

Eric: Someone from Denver here. No Iíve just come from Malta of all places. Yeah Iím doing a movie in Malta right now so um, I got in at about quarter-past four this morning and Iím feeling pretty perky.

Jay: Perky, eh?

Eric: Yeah.

Jay: There you go, a little cup of ice will do it for ya!

Eric: Yeah...

Jay: Now tell me about your background, are your parents actors? Do you come from theater?

Eric: No, theyíre as far from acting as you can get. My mother was a hairdresser and my father works for an earth-moving machinery company.

Jay: Oh okay.

Eric: And my brother's an accountant you know, so Iím just like, the black sheep of the family, obviously.

Jay: Well, did you want to be an actor?

Eric: No actually, I wanted to be a motor mechanic. I wanted to leave school at fourteen and go work on my car, and my dad said, "Don't do that, son." No actually my dad says, [Croatian/Australian accent] "Son, don't do that. Ahh, you should stay at school until your high school is finished, and when you finish, donít make your hobby your job."

Jay: Your dad is Victor Borgnine?

Eric: Yeah!

[audience laughs]

Jay: What accent is that?

Eric: Well thatís a kind of half-Croatian, half-Australian kind of thing going on there.

Jay: Oh, okay.

Eric: You're very familiar, people would be very familiar with that sound, you hear it everyday.

Jay: Oh, okay. But youíre still a car guy, right?

Eric: Oh yeah, I love my cars Jay. I'm a man of the cloth, absolutely.

Jay: Yeah see this is why ...[inaudible] and you race too?

Eric: I do! Yeah I race historic muscle cars back in Australia, and that's my hobby. And I try to race home as soon as I'm finished a movie but don't tell anyone.

Jay: No no. Now you've been to the States before - you came here in what, the early 90s?

Eric: I was here in about 1990, and I did something a little bit silly. I started out in New York and bought a 79 Mustang and drove across this beautiful country and saw it all, almost, and then I sold the car for about a hundred and fifty bucks more than what I paid for it, then went like that [puts his thumb on his nose and waves his fingers] to all the backpackers and flew home. 'Cause they brag don't they? The backpackers they just brag. "You know I'm getting by on fifty bucks. Aren't I cool?" Y'know, I think youíre quite stupid actually.

[audience laughter and applause]

Jay: Now you started out as a stand-up comic?

Eric: That's true, that's true. My background back in Australia was stand-up comedy, uh in about 1990, and then I branched over into sketch comedy. Television sketch comedy.

Jay: Your show "Full Frontal" that's, that's "Saturday Night Live" in Australia.

Eric: Yeah! I was on that show for quite a while and then um, I had my own sketch comedy program and then sorta made the move across to drama and I haven't looked back.

Jay: But you did impressions?

Eric: Yeah, it was kinda like how I made my living.

Jay: Is there anybody - probably a lot of Australians, but who would you do that our audience would know?

Eric: Well I could do my co-star from from "The Hulk," Nick Nolte.

Jay: You could do Nick Nolte?

Eric: Who plays my father. Is that okay I do Nick?

Jay: Do you need a drink?

[audience laughter]

[Eric waves his finger at Jay]

Eric: So this is, so one day I come to the set and Nick has got a bottle of oxygen next to his chair, and I said, "Nick, what are you doing with a bottle of oxygen?" and he said, [dead-on Nolte impersonation] "Well, Eric uhhh, to uhhh, tell you the truth uhhh, I don't really need it, but uhhh, it makes me think you're a little crazy." [mimes inhaling deeply from bottle of oxygen]

[audience laughter and applause]

Jay: So tell me about this film, "The Hulk." It's pretty amazing, it's not uh, Ang Lee is the director - he does like really serious - "The Ice Storm" was his.

Eric: Yeah, he's got the most amazing pedigree.

Jay: Yeah it's serious, it's not cartoony. I mean it's a cartoon it's based on but -

Eric: Yeah.

Jay: I heard, did he take you to some fights or something? He took you to, what was that about?

Eric: Heís a little weird, Ang. Y'know he um, for research he said we're gonna go and look at some ultimate fighting out in the desert, y'know, and I said -

Jay: That's like bare knuckle fighting.

Eric: Yeah, just bare-knuckle stuff. And it, it was pretty ugly and after about three fights I clearly had enough, 'cause y'know [turns to Drew Barrymore] Iím not really into that y'know, Iím not a fighter, Drew. [Drew giggles] I could never be in one of your movies. [Drew giggles more]. And um -

Drew: You'd have fun!

Eric: Oh I'm sure I would.

[audience laughs]

Jay: What was the reason he wanted you to um -

Eric: Jay, I have no idea. I have no idea what the reason. He's a, he's a really interesting director. I had some amazing moments with him. I had this love scene with Jennifer Connelly, and yíknow, as you do, and well as a love scene goes in this movie she was taking some of my blood, and -

[audience laughs]

Eric: And this was, this was like meant to be like quite an intimate moment y'know, 'cause you've seen the film, thereís not that many kinda, really intimate moments. She's taking my blood and Ang, he said [perfect Ang Lee-speak] "Okaaaayy, Eric, Jennifer, this is like, a love scene but you not in bed, but it's like a love scene." So I said 'Okay, okay I can convey that. I can convey that pure love and lust.' And we get, we do the scene and y'know I'm kinda giving her that look, y'know, that you can do...

Jay: Yeah.

Eric: And at the end of the scene, y'know, cut and he said [Ang-voice] "Eric, can you look at her a little more, lovingly?" [audience laughs] And I said, Yeah why? [Ang-voice] "Looks like you want to kill her." [big audience laughter] So either I'm a bad actor or my wife is really kinky, one of the two.

[audience laughs]

Jay: Now set up this clip. We're gonna see, now this is uh, now this is the scene you wait for, this is where you wanna see him beat up -

Eric: Am I gonna turn?

Jay: 'Cause I think you turn in this.

Eric: Right right. Well you know this is Josh Lucas, who quite frankly (turns to Drew) if you ever do another "Charlie's Angels," don't, don't get Josh Ďcause he'll beat the crap outta you, quite frankly.

Drew: Really?

Eric: Yeah yeah.

Drew: Well, bring it on!

[audience laughs and cheers]

Eric: He doesn't know how to pull back! And this is a scene where, where Josh is basically beating the crap outta me on and off camera, and I've had enough as Bruce, and as Eric!

Jay: You donít even know what's happening to you in this part here.

Eric: No, no not really.

Jay: Okay take a look here we go, from "The Hulk."

[Film clip plays from "The Hulk" - the "You're making me angry..." scene with Josh Lucas]

[end of clip]

[audience cheers - applause]

Jay: Ooh there ya go! Great great job! I got a pair of those one-size-fits-all pants!

Eric: Very handy! Y'know that's the same look I was giving Jennifer! Now I see why it didnít work!

Drew: I just want to say that is so me first thing in the morning.

Jay: Eric, great job, come back as soon as you can.

Eric: Thank you, Jay.

Jay: Great job. Eric Bana!

[end of interview]

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