Kelly & Michael: Dustin Hoffman Quartet Review & Kennedy Center Honors

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Live with Kelly and Michael: Dustin Hoffman

Kelly and Michael’s first guest needed no introduction. Two-time Academy Award winner Dustin Hoffman visited the show to talk about his directorial debut with the movie Quartet.

Kelly & Michael: Dustin Hoffman Oscars

Kelly & Michael: Dustin Hoffman Quartet Review & Kennedy Center Honors

Kelly and Michael learned about the inspiration behind the Dustin Hoffman Quartet directorial debut and his experience at the Kennedy Center Honors. (Featureflash / Shutterstock.com)

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Michael Strahan even picked Hoffman up as a greeting. “That’s better than a handshake,” he said. Kelly explained to Dustin Hoffman that she and Michael are heading to the Oscars next month. She asked what it was like to be there on the big night as a nominee.

“Being nominated’s very cool. Being there is disappointing,” Dustin said. “After you realize that you haven’t won, you’d really like to sneak out and go to Shake Shake or something.”

Dustin said he and his wife always take their limo to In ‘n Out on the way home.

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Kelly and Michael: Dustin Hoffman Kennedy Center Honors

In December 2012, Dustin Hoffman was awarded the Kennedy Center Honors. He said it is like being at your own funeral, hearing all those nice things about you and watching a retrospective of your career.

But he said he thinks it must not be anything like going to the Super Bowl. Kelly said now that Dustin is a director, he can cast Michael in a movie and they can take each other to big events. Michael and Dustin also compared calves to see who is more fit; Dustin keeps in shape by playing tennis.

Kelly & Michael: Dustin Hoffman Grandchildren

His grandchildren, Gus and Daisy Jo, attended the Kennedy Center ceremonies. He was happy to be able to bring his whole family to the big event. The grandchildren are eight and seven, and they even got to meet the President and First Lady. Daisy wanted to know whether the president had anything to eat, and he made sure to send an aide to her with a ribbon-wrapped box of food.

Kelly and Michael: Dustin Hoffman Dog Jack

Jack the Jack Russell terrier was raised in LA, where the weather is mild. Then he moved with Dustin’s daughter to Minneapolis when she got married. It was a lot colder in Minnesota. After a week, he stopped going outside to relieve himself and would just urinate into the yard from inside the door.

Kelly & Michael: Dustin Hoffman Directorial Style

Dustin Hoffman has won two Academy Awards for his movie roles. Now he is moving on to a new role as director. Actors are employees, but directors “hold the paintbrush,” he said. Some directors hate the actors they work with, but others are thrilled to see how actors improvise and bring their best to any role.

“Directors that have never been actors, I think they tend to be defensive sometimes,” he said. Dustin kept trying to compare it to football, I guess to be relatable to Michael, but it did not seem that complicated to me.

Kelly and Michael: Dustin Hoffman Quartet Review

Why did Dustin Hoffman choose Quartet as his first directorial project? He cited the 1983 documentary Tosca’s Kiss as an inspiration. The Italian opera composer Verdi built himself a mansion and bequeathed it to the opera singers he worked with for years.

He said the story of his movie is loosely based on that concept of an artists’ compound, where the musicians’ annual reunion is disrupted by an uninvited guest. The cast includes the incomparable Maggie Smith.

Quartet is now in theaters, and Kelly Ripa gave it her seal of approval.

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