There’s a Bill Murray interview in the latest Esquire that has some good stuff. There’s also a few parts that should have been cut.
I’m not trying to be coy. It’s just practical for me. When the phone started ringing too many times, I had to take it back to what I can handle. I take my chances on a job or a person as opposed to a situation. I don’t like to have a situation placed over my head.
As a bonus, here’s Raab’s big profile of Murray from 2004 where he talks about not enjoying the making of Steve Zissou:
“A fireplace.” Murray sounds sardonic; I’m unsure if he’s joshing about the fireplace. He spent five months in Italy this past winter making The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, due out this Christmas, his third film with director Wes Anderson. Apparently, fireplace or no, it wasn’t fun, at least for Mr. Bill. All the action takes place on a boat–Murray’s character, Steve Zissou, is a Jacques Cousteau type seeking to avenge his partner’s death by shark–but Murray won’t discuss the awful details.
“It’s like talkin’ about war stories,” he says. “I can’t even think about it. My impression of Italy before doing this job was that it’s one of the greatest, most beautiful places in the world. After this job, if you say ‘Italy’ to me, it’s like a whole lotta cockroaches in one room–you don’t know what to deal with first. It was by far the hardest job I’ve ever had, and I always work hard. I work the same hard on all of ’em. But this one–I’ve been kidding about it, saying they almost broke me, and they may have and I just don’t know it yet.”
Well, I say, I’m sure it’s gonna turn out to be a good–
“God damn it,” Murray snarls, “the movie better be the greatest movie ever made. If it’s not, I’m gonna kill Anderson. He’s a dead man. If it’s not the greatest movie ever made, or in the top ten, he may as well just move to China and change his name to Chin, and he better get himself a small room in a small town–and even then, I’ll hunt him down.”
And then because I love you all very much and I was bored yesterday, I went looking for as many Bill Murray articles as I could find. It was hard to find the articles, if any written about him in the 80s and 90s, I think because it’s only been since about Lost in Translation that he’s gotten the current level of respect. Even still, I was surprised not to find longread profile pieces on him in Vanity Fair, NY Times Magazine, etc.
August, 1984. Bill Murray and John Byrum. Rolling Stone
November, 1988. The Rumpled Anarchy of Bill Murray. New York Times
July, 1990 Bill Murray. “Quick Change” artist. rogerebert.com
February, 1993. Groundhog Day Review. NYTimes.com
January, 1999. A conversation with actor Bill Murray. Charlie Rose
February, 2001. Bill Murray. Salon.com
December, 2004. Life enigmatic with Bill Murray. USA Today
December, 2004. Never Out Of His Depth. Washington Post
February, 2005. Shotgun Golf with Bill Murray. ESPN
October, 2005. Pearce meets Bill Murray. The Guardian
June 2010. Bill Murray: The Man Who Knew Too Much. BlackBook
July, 2010. Bill Murray: The Curious Case of Hollywood’s White Whale. EW.com
July, 2010. Bill Murray. The Moviefone Blog
August, 2010. Bill Murray Is Ready To See You Now. GQ