Not all bold-face names are celebutards who need an hour and a half to watch 60 Minutes. Some of them are actually quite brainy, as I–who push tape recorders in their faces on a regular basis–should know. The smartest famous people I’ve ever interviewed are:
*Anyone British. Though maybe they just sound smarter.
*Annette Bening. The woman spews an amazing parade of verbiage, all brilliantly crafted, finely articulate, and designed to impress. And it works! Obviously anyone who can tame Warren Beatty is no dummy.
*Sandra Bullock. You have to believe me that the Miss Congeniality star is whip-smart and able to banter with the best of them. The woman obviously had a fine upbringing and paid attention during school. Face it, it takes a genius to keep getting such young hotties, both onscreen and off.
*John Leguizamo. All right, Super Mario Brothers and The Happening were mistakes, but Leguizamo has a crackling mind for both humor and pathos and that will always land him on top.
*Paris Hilton. No, let me keep that one to myself.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 26, 2009