Burt Reynolds turned heads during his surprising Today show interview on Thursday, March 15.
The Smokey and the Bandit actor, 82, sat down with Hoda Kotb to promote his new film The Last Movie Star and look back on his legendary life and career.
Reynolds caught 53-year-old Kotb off guard at the end of the interview by making a bizarre remark about her appearance. “I am so proud of you for not having your lips larger,” he said before kissing her hand.
Kotb began the segment by encouraging Reynolds to reminisce on throwback photos of himself hanging on the wall. “These are all in my bedroom too. I don’t have any pictures of anybody else but me because it makes me happy,” he teased before pointing at a snapshot of himself throwing a football. “If I could do that, I wouldn’t want to be an actor.”
The Gunsmoke alum also spoke candidly about his late father’s disapproval of his career. “He wasn’t happy, you know?” Reynolds recalled, noting that his dad never congratulated him on his success. “I even gave him straight lines, like, ‘What did you think of the last picture, dad?’ And he said, ‘What picture?’ It was an ouch.”
Reynolds added that his dad, a former police chief and World War II veteran, once arrested him for fighting. “He threw us all in this dunk tank and he came down and [told the rest of those with me], ‘You can go home, your father came.’ And then he looked at me and he said, ‘Your father didn’t show up,’” the Boogie Nights actor disclosed. “It was tough, but I loved him beyond.”
The Deliverance star also revealed he’d want George Clooney to portray him in a movie about his life. “Why not? He’s not quite as good-looking as me,” Reynolds teased. “But he’s still got a lot of other things.”
Reynolds also spoke about his five-year on-again, off-again, romance with Sally Field more than 30 years ago and revealed that she remains the love of his life. “Well, she was 7 when I fell in love with her. She stayed 7 for about 11 years. I would say Sally … Yes, Sally Field,” he confirmed. “She was — well, she is still, [the love of my life].”
The Last Movie Star hits theaters on Friday, March 30.