Clint Eastwood says the idea to use an empty seat as a prop at the Republican National Convention was a spur-of-the-moment decision when someone backstage asked if he wanted to sit down.
In his first interview since his Aug. 30 appearance at the convention, Eastwood told the weekly newspaper in the California seaside town where he was mayor that his speech was not only unscripted, it was pretty much spontaneous.
"There was a stool there, and some fella kept asking me if I wanted to sit down," Eastwood told the Carmel Pine Cone. "When I saw the stool sitting there, it gave me the idea. I'll just put the stool out there and I'll talk to Mr. Obama and ask him why he didn't keep all of the promises he made to everybody."
Eastwood's peculiar, sometimes rambling conversation with an imaginary President Barack Obama in an empty chair set the blogosphere and social media ablaze. Reaction to his appearance generally has split along party lines, with Republicans raving about his stinging rebuke of Obama and Democrats ridiculing him as old, angry and out of touch.
The 82-year-old Eastwood said he set out to make three points and he achieved his goal.
"That not everybody in Hollywood is on the left, that Obama has broken a lot of the promises he made when he took office, and that the people should feel free to get rid of any politician who's not doing a good job," Eastwood said in the interview, which was conducted Tuesday but not published until Friday. "But I didn't make up my mind exactly what I was going to say until I said it."