Ann Curry from the TODAY Show Interviews Brad Pitt

     August 22, 2007

Ann Curry, from NBC’s Today Show, was able to interview Brad Pitt and the interview will air on Wednesday, August 22 and Thursday, August 23. To help promote the exclusive interview they’ve provided us with some of the quotes and they’re below. While we normally don’t run these kinds of things… Brad Pitt is sort of popular and I know a lot of you are going to read this. So here’s what we were sent:

Ann Curry traveled to New Orleans to talk to Pitt about his efforts to bring green design (eco-friendly building and development) to the city devastated by Hurricane Katrina. Pitt, who owns a home with Angelina Jolie in the French Quarter of New Orleans, continually offers support to green building in the region.

BRAD PITT: It’s about dignity. You look around, the first thing that gets sacrificed in affordable housing is lights, ventilation. You see here we got great light. There’s windows everywhere. (Showing the green affordable housing) There is this great breeze coming in they’re here. All– all the materials here are nontoxic. And I think, for the family that’s going to be here, especially being a father that it’s got to feel good to know that he’s giving his family a better way of life. That he’s able to contribute that way. Not only that, this house does not poison the environment. It’s respectful to the– to the people who will be here after. It’s very simple. There’s not, you know, most of the building strategy here is– is using techniques that have been around a long time….There’s very little new technology in here…. It’s just, you know, making us be aware of it. Teaching ourselves. And implementing it.

ANN CURRY: Two things come to mind. First– as a man who makes movies, who has a wealthy life, to speak about what a father, who does not have those things, is able to give his children.

BRAD PITT: Well, again, I think it’s–

ANN CURRY: It says something about–

BRAD PITT: It’s a justice issue. You know– I mean what we saw Katrina is that there is a portion of our society that’s being overlooked. And– and so– in the aftermath, we’re not going to be able to bring back the friends and family that are lost. We’re not going to be able to bring back their heirlooms and their photographs. But maybe, this is a question we presented, maybe we can provide a better way of life. Maybe we can find some good out of this. And that has to deal with justice and fairness. And– and what I think this place proves is that this technology, that this healthier way of life, this better way of life, is applicable to all economic levels.

ANN CURRY: When you say justice and fairness, what you’re saying is that everyone, no matter what their income level, deserves an opportunity to have a healthy life.

BRAD PITT: Absolutely.

ANN CURRY: Deserves an opportunity to have a place where their children can grow up healthy and happy…

BRAD PITT: Absolutely.

ANN CURRY: …with sunlight, and outdoor space.

BRAD PITT: That’s right. And they don’t have to be subjected to the bottom end of materials. Materials that– that are developed for profit. And we’re becoming more and more aware of these materials. And I think we’ll see a big movement away from that, and– and to a healthier– healthy materials as this house…. You see that FEMA trailer over there. It’s ripe with formaldehyde. That trailer that people are having to stay in is poisoning them, even as we speak.


BRAD PITT: I think it’ll be a big topic in the upcoming elections.

ANN CURRY: Has it been enough of a topic?

BRAD PITT: No, it hasn’t been enough. No, it hasn’t been enough.

ANN CURRY: What makes you believe it will be?

BRAD PITT: But we’ll be forced to. We’ll be forced to. And, as you see, we’re reading more and we’re learning more, and more is coming out. I mean, and I think this’ll be a big topic.


BRAD PITT: You know, this talk about the money that’s– that’s needed now to make this right. And– I just want to point out, there was $80 billion in damages from Katrina. A hundred and fifty if you count lost revenue. And that could have all been avoided with a little attention to– to the situation here. And this is an important city. It’s important to us culturally. It’s also an important city to us economically. What remaining oil that– our– 30 percent of our oil is– comes through New Orleans. That we– as we make this shift away from oil, we’re going to rely more and more on. And there is this responsibility to correct that. And– my– my worry is that it’s just– we’re setting up people here. This doesn’t get attended to, we’re going to set people up here for another disaster, if not a bigger disaster. So I– I see a great responsibility.

ANN CURRY: You sound like you’re speaking not just to somebody who’s coming from the outside, looking, as you have before last year, I remember talking to you about this. And you’re coming in and you’re looking at it and saying, “This is not right.” It sounds like you’re now speaking as a New Orleans resident.

BRAD PITT: I know a lot of the people here. I care very much for the area. I met a 60 year old man who– when I first arrived here to look into this. And– he said, “I– I did everything right. I got a job. I bought a home. I raised my kids in that home. They did the same. Now my kids are– well, one kid’s in Atlanta, another one’s in Houston. We’re all split apart and– and we’ve been wiped out.”…

ANN CURRY: Because of the storm…

BRAD PITT: …”What do I do? What do I do?” And he’s right. And that’s unacceptable. So any debate on– on should we rebuild, should we not-I’ll take you on.

ANN CURRY: ‘Cause you’re looking at that guy’s face.

BRAD PITT: That’s right. That’s right.

ANN CURRY: He deserved better.

BRAD PITT: That’s right.


ANN CURRY: I’m going to read you a quote. Brad, last year, you said, “If done properly, we can completely get rid of the idea of an energy bill. It’s not that difficult.”

BRAD PITT: Yeah, I mean that’s the goal. The idea that we pay utility bills is absolutely unnecessary. And I mean there’s the sun. It’s right there to be harnessed. You feel the breeze that’s been created here. And we got water right out there. Any one of these can be harnessed. And we can integrate ourselves into that ecosystem. And not only power our houses, but actually produce energy for other parts of the city. So that was the goal here. This particular house is– the family that will live here will save 75 on their– an energy bill. Which is a huge saving for any of us. But especially dealing with affordable housing. And, it’s something I’m very proud of. I consider it a breakthrough. Also, 50 percent on your water bills.

ANN CURRY: That’s a big deal to you, why?

BRAD PITT: It’s a big deal.

ANN CURRY: Why? Why do you care so much?

BRAD PITT: Because it’s simple. It’s smart. It’s the way we have to be thinking. There’s a lot of problems in the world right now because of our dependency on oil. This makes sense. This is the direction we should have been heading in a long time ago. And so little steps like this– I’m proud of it because it helps create a dialogue. It brings more knowledge and puts in– puts these ideas into practice. There’s a lot of people doing it, and we’re happy to be a part of it.

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