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Episode 529

Nerdist Podcast

Morgan Freeman

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Nerdist Podcast: Morgan Freeman

The legendary Morgan Freeman comes on the podcast to talk about the beginning of his career as an actor, the importance of enjoying life and finding the positive in everything, his love of flying planes, and the return his show Through the Wormhole on Science Channel!

Check out the clip from Through the Wormhole below and watch the show Wednesdays at 10 pm on Science Channel!

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63 comments

  • I love Morgan Freeman’s work as an actor and everything else he’s done… but good god this interview is hard to listen to. 

    I’m listening to this at work with headphones on and I am only 10 minutes into it and I want to shut it off because HE’S EATING!!! 

    You can hear food sloshing around when he talks and it sounds really gross.  Especially with headphones on.

  • Morgan Freeman’s greatest role:  Morgan Freeman.
    “You don’t know the value of anything until you work for it.”
    “Life is its own reward.  Fuck the rest of it.”
    “You do not want to be on your death bed regretting choices that you refused to make because of some social norm or someone else’s idea of what’s right for you.  I think in life you make choices.   You don’t make bad ones.  You just make choices.”

  • Never skipped an episode until this one. Move over Woody Harrelson, we have a new champion of terrible interviews. 
    Must have been agony there:
    “So why did you move to LA?”
    “That’s a loaded question……”
    *silence**silence*
    I listen to podcasts at 1.5x speed and even still he’s the worst interview subject I’ve ever heard. Way to shut down questions and topics. Has Freeman never heard an interview before? 
    Love the podcast guys, every other episode has been great 

  • Excellent guest.  Nice to hear when someone makes it all the way through hollywood maintaining a firm grasp on reality.  Harrison Ford, Kevin Bacon, & now Morgan Freeman, are probably among the hardest working, most professional, least wacky people, & have yielded the most down-to-earth episodes of this podcast thus far, with honest, thoughtful, sincere responses.
    Definitely some cringe-worthy questions on this one though.  Made me stop & consider whether it’s even fair to mic up total strangers, and then on-record & on the spot, expect them to take on the role of your therapist and life coach.  Yikes.

  • #petthesweatyshit!   I cannot believe I am the only one to catch this so far.  Everyone does this at one point or another in conversation by mistake, but I totally appreciate it when it actually creates a real phrase.  At about 32:54, Morgan says “pet the sweaty shit” instead of what I’m sure he meant, sweat the petty shit.  Props to you Chris for keeping it together because I would have lost it! 

  • I don’t really enjoy shows like this one because of how interviewy it was. I don’t blame Hardwick for trying to get some conversation out of the man, but the end result just seemed too forged for my liking. 

  • I would love to hear Morgan Freeman, Ron Funches, Neil DeGrass Tyson and Mike Henry as Cleveland Brown, in a room together discussing the mysteries of the universe….

  • As a young man, I remember listening to E.G. Marshall narrate Mystery Theater on the radio many years ago.. He was fantastic! Now I can ‘watch’ Morgan Freeman and his melodic presentation….Wow!  I am blessed to be witness to another ‘great’ story teller.  I can hardly wait…

  • Omg my fave part of the Lego Movie is when Morgan Freeman wizard guy is assigned to be the lookout and he looks a wall and says “Okay” dat shit kills me every time lol #usedbentlollipopwizardstaff

  • Superb stuff,Without doubt one of my favorite nerdist podcasts to date. “Enjoy Your Burrito” from Mr Freeman was the icing. Get it on your outro forever guys. keep up the goodwork,, Regards, Keith. ( regular listener in not so sunny Edinburgh, Scotland)

  • Great interview. I think Chris, like anyone would be, was a bit intimidated and starstruck by him.  I could listen to Morgan Freeman talk for hours. He is a very no bullshit person, I respect him quite a bit more after this too.

  • Wow, that was not nearly as cool as it should have been. Could have been good like the Tom Hanks episodes, because Morgan Freeman is a lot more with it than most older actors. The conversations got too bogged down in vague philosophical nonsense. I wanted to hear about Andy Dufresne crawling threw a river of shit. Or what was in the box! What’s in the box! Or Batman stories. I mean it was wishful thinking to think you would cover South Park’s parody of him, but man was that just an awful waste of an opportunity. He’s an actor not a life coach. Ask about acting stuff. Movie stories. Hope the Tom Cruise episode goes better.

  • Thanks for the interesting podcast!

    I wanted to mention one specific thing that came up in the conversation, that lightly touched on upbringing and how what you’re told impacts your life (specifically mentioned was the ‘untouchables’ caste).

    One thing most youth workers will tell you is there are few things more powerful than advocating for them individually.  Telling them and showing to them how they’re smart, capable, how they can do anything, and then also standing up for them.  Such simple actions change lives.

    It’s remarkable just how many kids are brought up with parents who tell them they’re stupid, and will never amount to anything.  Is it any wonder that they learn and take it to heart, and never have that self confidence necessary to actually change their lives?

  • a little awkward, really started to warm up toward the end, wished we could had a little more time.   I agree with Sasha that it took a bit to get use to talking for an hour, my feelings was soon as it was over it was starting to normalize. 

  • Such a great podcast. The little silences were uncomfortable and awkward, but it hits its stride around the 35-40 minute mark. Morgan Freeman is definitely a national treasure.
    I had to laugh at the part about getting your own branch, or as my mom/grandma called it, ‘switch.’ They’d give it a few test swings, and if it didn’t make the ‘woosh’ sound,  they’d pick one that would turn your ass into ground hamburger. The trick is to find a switch with just enough ‘woosh’ to sound painful but thick and with enough leaves to not actually cause pain. Thinking back, it’s a pretty cruel thing to make a kid do.
    The people complaining about this not being a ‘nerd’ podcast anymore, well, screw ‘em. This is Morgan Fucking Freeman. I think it’s great hearing from non-nerds who can offer a different perspective on the industry and life in general. 100% looking forward to the Tom Cruise one, solely because I don’t know what to expect.

  • You guys talk about the Harrison Ford podcast, but this is the first time I’ve heard Chris Hardwick seem to not establish any sort of rapport with a guest.  This was very awkward.

  • Was he eating? I had to stop listening after 5 minutes of hearing him. I was really disappointed as I was excited to see this one come up (usually I have no idea who you are interviewing :) ) But I just can’t listen to the lip smacking noises. I assumed he was eating because he never sounds like that normally. If he was, please do not let your guests eat. 

  • not relevant to the actual podcast but I just came to this episode from the first Maria Bamford one and holy wow Chris’s voice has changed way more than you’d have expected. Of course, it could be the mics they had back then but it was just sort of neat hearing the difference. Otis would probably sound kind of badass now.

  • Yes, it was awkward and those are some of the best podcasts imo.  I knew it was going to be a good one when I went to listen to it on Stitcher and got the message that the podcast was no longer available. My prognosis is that MF is a bit full of himself and prob smokes a lot of mj. Chris did a good job of propping him up so that we could see the mind behind the voice.  Good job guys, one of the more entertaining episodes.

  • I think that I would be completely and utterly content to have Mr. Freeman’s “enjoy your burrito” tag replace the robot lady’s voice as the cap for every episode.

  • Yeah, I remember reading Socrates’ great treatise on the subject of Zombie Apocalypses.  The best stuff was compiled in the 1500s into De Re Zombifica.
    #citationneeded

  • This one kind of reminded me of the Ron Perleman podcast.  it was awkward at time but the guest eventually relaxed and settled into a good rhythm.

    Also I kind of assumed from Chris’s twitter we’ll be getting a Tom Cruise podcast sometime soonish. 

  • You also have to realize that Morgan Freeman did say at the start of the podcast that he was not familiar with the medium of podcasting. So for someone who is mostly used to press type of interviews, it could be difficult easing into the whole idea of just bantering for an hour or so.

    Nonetheless, I enjoyed this podcast. I have slight misophonia but Morgan Freeman’s chewing, much like his voice, was soothing.

    • Chris may chalk this one up in his head as the black “Harrison Ford”… but in all honesty you are pretty much right. Morgan is a calculated, thought-out individual and some of his answers just may have not been a perfect fit for the medium. Chris and Jonah did the best they could to keep things moving along, but his short and sometimes obscure answers we’re wrenching the plans a bit.

      All in all it was great to hear him talk about anything for that long, still very entertaining. 

    • I think you hit it, Sasha. This wasn’t in any way a bad interview, it just didn’t quite takeoff the way many of the conversation type episodes do. That being said, Morgan Freeman is still fantastically interesting and a joy to listen to.

  • Might be a good idea to offer the guest the Goo-Goo Cluster AFTER the (chomp) interview.  Hardwick is SO obsessed with his age, it’s pitiful.  Everyone ages, Knucklehead.  Deal with it.
    Morgan Freeman is not a nerd.

        • @Mo I am one of Nerdist Industries’ biggest cheerleaders and advocates.  There’s nothing wrong with constructively pointing out an issue.  (RJ clearly did NOT do this.) 

          The episode did start off a bit awkward but warmed up and relaxed by the end.  I think it was the fact that Mr. Freeman wasn’t sure what a podcast was. 

          Your enthusiasm is fantastic! But nothing is beyond constructive criticism.

          -Di. (Sits back and drinks her Nerdist flavored Kookaid.)

        • Where in the F**K do any of you think that this was “awkward” in any way whatsoever? Chris asked questions, he got answers. How is that awkward? Morgan Freeman seemed to think about his responses beforehand which is what? Not allowed? The dude even said he doesn’t remember much–which further warrants him taking a minute to get his answers out. Long Live Chris and the Nerdist Enterprise, because the dude is able to do the impossible. He completely filled a gap that was sitting in the entertainment/knowledge/pop culture that no one else could or even attempted to the right way. So everyone who listens to the podcasts and is in the Nerdist Galaxy and then goes on to bash it–you’re a punk and a sloppy one at that. If you don’t like what other people are doing, don’t listen. Listen to other podcasts-because there a million hacks out there with no purpose to their own podcasts.

  • This was a great episode, Chris! Not sure where the awkwardness was, aside from Morgan gathering his thoughts from time to time, but to each his own. I’m a little sad you guys didn’t get around to talking about Shawshank Redemption, which is one of my most favorite movies of all time.
    In any case, good times, and look forward to Tom Cruise podcast on Friday.

  • Honestly, I think its a combination of Chris being star-struck and Morgan Freeman having that ‘being careful with what he says’ syndrome that a lot of A-list celebs have (something a guest said a while back in an episode). It did seem awkward at first, but it really picked up and opened him up.
    Nevertheless, it was an amazing episode and I did enjoy it.