‘The Guilt Trip’: Nine things we learned from Barbra Streisand

Barbra Streisand returns to the screen in "The Guilt Trip," in which she plays Seth Rogen's mother.

Barbra Streisand is many things — an acclaimed actress, singer, director and writer, political activist and philanthropist — but most of all she’s a woman not afraid to speak her mind. So what wisdom did Streisand have to impart while promoting “The Guilt Trip,” her first starring role in a movie since “The Mirror Has Two Faces” in 1996?

1. The secret to her success is staying home. “I don’t make that many movies and I don’t make that many appearances,” she says. “That’s it. Less is more. And maybe that keeps a little mystery or something. I like to stay home a lot.”

2. She doesn’t like where the film industry has been going. “It’s not the same as when I last made a film. They’re not interested in love stories or any movie that’s over $15 million. But it could be $100 million, that’s OK. Two hundred million is OK to lose,” she says with a laugh. “But movies that I’m used to making or liking, that draw me, they’re movies that cost $18 million, $20 million, and they’re not interested in those movies. It’s a different time. I don’t like it as much.”

3. She doesn’t actually get sent that many scripts to consider. “I don’t. You see, everybody gets like that. ‘She must get so many scripts, why would I send it to her? She’ll never get a chance to read it,’” Streisand laments. “Meanwhile I’ll go, ‘Where are the scripts?’”

4. Getting her to do “The Guilt Trip” required an actual guilt trip from director Anne Fletcher. “I remember on the boat I said to Anne, ‘Would you make the movie without me?’ And she said no,” Streisand recalls. “I felt bad, guilty. I said, ‘Oh no, she’s not going to have this job.’”

5. While co-star Seth Rogen asked around about what working with Streisand would be like, she wasn’t able to do any similar research. “Seth, it turns out, sussed me out,” she says. “He called people from the ‘Focker’ movies. I didn’t know who to call. I don’t know any of those people from his movies, so what was I going to do?”

6. She’s on social media — even if she doesn’t know it. “[Rogen] asked me if I had a Twitter account. I said, ‘I don’t know.’ And he showed me that I do. Which I only use for political purposes, so I didn’t know it was beyond that. I wouldn’t be able to find it on my phone,” Streisand admits.

7. While she’s widely considered a gay icon, she isn’t necessarily to her openly gay son, Jason Gould. “He doesn’t see me as an icon. He sees me as his mother who touches his hair too much,” she says. “But I love being an icon to anybody. Equal rights, you know?”

8. Despite her recent spate of concerts, she prefers to not have an audience around when she works. “I prefer things that are private, so I love recording and I love making films,” she says.

9. She can do a lot of things well, but she terrible in the kitchen. “I can’t cook. I can’t cook at all. I mean, I would not know how to make coffee. Maybe boil an egg, maybe I could figure that one out,” she says. “I’ve found, when I took cooking classes, when I tried to cook, it was never appetizing to eat. You know, the joy was gone. I was always filthy with the stuff. How do they keep their hands clean? And then cleaning up, yeah I don’t like that.”


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