The Billy Bob Tapes: A Cave Full of Ghosts
Billy Bob Thornton
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There is—and could only ever be—one Billy Bob Thornton: actor, musician, Academy Award-winning screenwriter, and accidental Hollywood badass. In The Billy Bob Tapes, he leads us into his Cave Full of Ghosts, spinning colorful tales of his modest (to say the least) Southern upbringing, his bizarre phobias (komoda dragons?), his life, his loves (including his marriage to fellow Oscar winner Angelina Jolie), and, of course, his movie career. Best of all, he’s feeding these truly incredible stories and righteous philosophical rants through his close friend, Kinky Friedman—legendary country music star, bestselling author, would-be politician, and all-around bon vivant. Put these two iconoclasts together and you get a star’s story that’s actually an insightful pop culture manifesto—a hybrid offspring of Born Standing Up with Sh*t My Dad Says.
were doing this over and over. I got in line with them and started running back and forth behind them. We did this for God knows how long until we finally went back and sat in the living room. One of my buddies started crying and telling this awful story. All my buddies started looking kind of like pigs. Their noses were turned up, and they had these big, hollow eyes. I went into the bathroom, which had a lightbulb in front of the mirror with a chain on it. At that time I was even skinnier than
some guy at the door wants to talk to you,” I said, and when she saw who it was, my mother told me and my brother to go back over around the corner in the hallway, where we listened to the whole thing. He started yelling, “If you don’t stop seeing my wife and my daughter, then I’m going to start using your own medicine on you. You see this?” he said, holding up that troll doll. “This is a voodoo doll, and I’m going to use it on you if you don’t quit talking to my wife and daughter.” He’s been
in terms of that period of my life. Pushing Tin is where Angie and I first really got to know each other. It was also the first time I worked with John Cusack, who’s just great to work with, and with whom I also later did The Ice Harvest. And then, of course, there was the great Cate Blanchett. Pushing Tin didn’t do great. I think it was three-quarters of a great movie and the last twenty minutes or so, not so much—like some of the critics said, it took off but it didn’t land. But I loved the
walked the streets Just like anyone But something in my Head turned me Into a setting sun Now every time I get the call To walk inside the outside walls I know I’ll have to play The game of shadows —“Game of Shadows” (Thornton/Davis) GOSSIP USED TO BE FOR WOMEN AT THE BEAUTY SHOP WHEN THEY’D talk about what the neighbor did. It was just something to do. Now gossip has become a multibillion-dollar business, and that’s kind of what’s changed entertainment for everyone. As I alluded to
friend Mike Shipp on the left playing bass. I think this was Morrilton, Arkansas. With old buddy Broderick Collins on a bridge somewhere. Looks like I’m holding something. Probably 1979 or ’80, just before coming to L.A. Karl Childers, with books and french-fried potaters. Photograph by Michael Yarish. Courtesy of Miramax. With the late great J. T. Walsh. From Sling Blade. Photograph by Michael Yarish. Courtesy of Miramax. With Billy Wilder at his office, 1996. Great director.