INTERVIEW — TAPE #52, SIDE #2
Q: Mark Russell Bell
R: radio disc jockey #1
D: radio disc jockey #2
J: radio disc jockey #3
L: Don Levy (friend in California)
W: unidentified personnel at Houston’s in Century City
R: “Wherever You Are.”
D: Where — (“WELL”)
J: Well, let’s look here for starters.
R: Is he there?
J: I don’t know. Why don’t you reach around there, Shirley? See if you can find him.
D: No no no —
J: He might be hidden behind her —
D: I don’t want to know where —
J: There’s a lot there. There’s a lot to hide behind. (small laugh)
R: Shut up. (“THE NEW”) 92.3.
D: Thank you.
J: The Beat. (“BEAT”)
R: Okay, so whoever’s carting the commercials — that just got us chewed out. Our general manager came running down here.
D: Oh yeah. (“YEAH”)
R: And then he’s like Bill Cowher, the coach of the Stealers. He’s right up in your face yelling, spitting at you. I’m getting a slight buzz off the fumes.
J: (laughs) (“BUILT IN”)
R: And the last thing he says — he said, “Look, if I want a loosely-run dead air show, I could put Theo on in (the) mornings.”
J: He said —
J: — yeah.
R: So — (“I”)
J: It was incredible when he said that.
R: Believe me. I’m —
J: We had to make his point. (“YEAH”)
R: Unbelievable. (“I DON’T KNOW”) 7:53. House party with you.
( . . . )
Q: So I’m on my way from the Hotline to my lunch appointment with Don Levy and I just saw a homeless person holding a $5 bill and talking to someone. Probably Mighael. I guess Mighael does the best He can to make people feel comfortable when they have nothing. And right now I see a hustler outside of The Golden Rule Food Mart. I wonder what that’s all about.
( . . . )
Q: Another homeless man just walked by. I was thinking earlier today about playing this game with Mighael — cybersex or whatever you want to call it. When we first started our game — I guess we’ve always been playing it but I didn’t know it until I was in Alhambra CPC. (“I”) For a while I was thinking that (“LIKE”) He was playing against me but now I realize it’s much more complex than that. And it’s not so much that He’s playing against anyone it’s just I think that this experience for Him is like (“HIS”) his own attempt for mental health. It’s a very healthy attempt on His part to become more involved and to (“THAT”) get the balance right, so to speak.
( . . . )
Q: I just saw a man outside a church with a sack of, I guess, his few remaining possessions. It reminded me today at the Hotline we were talking about the big problem with HIV and safe sex in the black and Latino communities. We all agreed that this is really something that the churches should be involved with. (“BECAUSE”) The church is the one area of these communities that can reach these young people who just don’t understand the ramifications. Today I spoke to a young Latino girl whose boyfriend and her had unsafe sex and no matter how hard I tried to explain to her about using latex condoms she just would rather torture herself with anxiety over worrying about the problem than ask her boyfriend to wear a condom. He had even offered to have an HIV test and she’s too intimidated to allow him to do that. It’s hard to understand the dilemma but the church needs to do a stronger job of telling people what to do because they obviously need to be told. At least in this case.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE NIAID OCTOBER 1996 FACT SHEET—IN REFERENCE TO CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION: HIV/AIDS SURVEILLANCE REPORT YEAR-END EDITION, VOL. 7, NO. 2, 1995; MIDYEAR EDITION, VOL. 8, NO. 1, 1996—REVEALS “MINORITIES ARE DISPROPORTIONATELY AFFECTED BY AIDS IN THE UNITED STATES. IN 1995, BLACKS AND HISPANICS REPRESENTED THE MAJORITY OF CASES AMONG MEN (54 PERCENT) AND AMONG WOMEN (76 PERCENT). IN 1995, THE RATE OF NEW AIDS CASES PER 100,000 POPULATION IN THE UNITED STATES WAS 92.6 AMONG BLACKS, 46.2 AMONG HISPANICS, 15.4 AMONG WHITES, 12.3 AMONG AMERICAN INDIANS/ALASKAN NATIVES, AND 6.2 AMONG ASIANS/PACIFIC ISLANDERS.” THE FOLLOWING INTERVIEW IS WITH DON LEVY, WHOSE UNIT PUBLICIST CREDITS INCLUDE “JURASSIC PARK 2: THE LOST WORLD,” “THE WITCHES OF EASTWICK,” “BRAINSTORM,” “2010,” “POLTERGEIST,” “SHOOT THE MOON” AND “COMING HOME.” AT THE TIME OF THIS INTERVIEW, DON WAS WORKING ON A STUDIO ACADEMY AWARD CAMPAIGN. ALTHOUGH THE RESTAURANT IS NOISY, THE NUMEROUS UNATTRIBUTED SOUNDS ARE CLEARLY DISCERNABLE ON THE TAPE YET NOT LISTED IN THIS SPECIAL INTERNET VERSION OF TESTAMENT.)
Q: I’m having lunch at Houston’s with my friend, Don Levy. It’s noisy in here. (“SO”) I hope I can hear this when I’m (“NO”) transcribing. (“THEN”) But I just told Don about my assignment. (“YOUR”) And he’s very surprised like everyone else.
L: Well, it seems like you have two things going on here. One is the poltergeist story. I mean there are two —
Q: Well, see what happened was —
L: I’m not sure that I at this point — (“OKAY” “SIDDHA” “THE TV” “ONE CALL”)
Q: There was a poltergeist in Oklahoma —
L: Okay. (“SEVEN”)
Q: — named Mighael. (“ALRIGHT”) I had just done a book on talking poltergeists. (“MEANING”) I went there. I realized the poltergeist (“RING”) was not a poltergeist but an angel because the limits of time and space meant nothing to Him and He proved that. (“ONE” “ALL”) But then He started maneuvering insects and diverse other phenomena and I realized too that He was channeling through me (“GAN”) when I began transcribing. (“MY”) And plus He spoke to me on the tape recorder. (“THEY”) So (“ANYWAY HE”) basically God proved His existence to me and then wants (“A”) every other person on the planet to vicariously experience the same thing I experienced (“WELL”) by reading my book. (“ALRIGHT”)
L: Now I believe in God. (“RA”) I mean I — (“AS YOU KNOW I” “OH”)
Q: People say they believe in God —
L: — but I —
Q: — but He proved it to me.
L: — I have not — I mean I’ve always sort of believed just by the incredible things that sort of happen in the world. (“YOU KNOW”)
Q: Well, would you be willing to say that every book, CD, poem — you name it — is from God?
L: Yes. Yes, I would. (“SO”) Yes, I would. (“RIGH”) But what I wouldn’t do is divorce the human intellect from the process.
Q: That’s correct. (“I”)
L: In other words, I think that we —
Q: I look at it as a collaboration between God and each individual.
L: I think that’s a fair estimate because I think that there is evidence — and certainly plenty of it — that we think.
W: And for your dining pleasure today we will have —
( . . . )
L: See, part of it is it comes down to a question that I think everyone at one time or another in their life asks, which is, “What is God?” I think it’s a fundamental question because I think, fundamentally, we all want to believe in some kind of higher order.
Q: And that’s one answer I still don’t fully understand. (“STAND”) I mean I know various aspects of Him. For example, I know that He works through everyone’s subconscious mind to do certain things. I think He’s somewhat limited, (“HAD”) however, or we wouldn’t have such war and pollution and things like that.
L: Well, (“SERA”) I think that there is a limit to the amount of control that any one entity can have over a universe.
Q: Even God?
L: Yeah. Because I think certain things —
Q: Because ‘chaos,’ I guess.
L: Certain things exist in chaos and you cannot control chaos. (“I” “IT”) I heard a description once that said that creativity — and this is not me talking. This is (“RIGHT”) something I have to give credit elsewhere.
Q: Right. (“BUT”)
L: The creative mind seeks to make order out of chaos. So I think this is all just one big experiment.
L: No one knows exactly how it began or why it began or where it began. (“I AM”) And I don’t think anybody really has an answer as to how it truly ends. I think that’s part of the mystery.
Q: That’s true.
L: In my own personal belief I’ve always sort of wrestled with the question of God. Not questioning so much God’s existence (“MINOR”) but in what is God? What I ultimately came down to is that God is something that exists deep within all of us, whether it be — nowadays that we’re in the computer age, whether it be like a little computer chip — that is just part of our cell structure, part of our DNA. Part of our blueprint includes this little component that stems from God.
Q: Do you think that’s also true for the angels and other spiritual beings?
L: Well, again — I come at this from a Jewish perspective and if my understanding of Judaism is correct, life is essentially here and now. And Jews do not spend their lives looking toward a hereafter or an elsewhere. In my traditional perspective, what you do while you are in this (“SS”) entity — this mind and body — is your life. And you are judged —
Q: Do you believe in angels, though?
L: I don’t know whether I believe in angels. I do believe — (“THANK YOU”)
W: Anything else I can do for you right now?
L: More ice tea.
W: More ice tea? (“THANK YOU”)
L: I do believe in spirits. I definitely believe in spirits. (“SIGN” “WELL” “YOU TA”)
Q: Talking about the creation of the universe, one of the books that, I guess, the angel Mighael (“I”) which is the Entity — (“I MEAN IT JUST”) I think this poltergeist is the angel Mighael. And, apparently, I’m either His assigned person or his soulmate. I can’t quite figure it out. Recently, Mighael sent me to see the movie “12 Monkeys.” Did you see that movie?
L: Not yet.
Q: So that was interesting. But right now I’m trying to come to terms with who it is basically who is my soulmate because — this is going to sound wild — but yesterday I met a woman who may be the reincarnation of Cleopatra. And a psychic once saw a spirit with her on one side and an angel on the other side. And the spirit wanted her back and he may have been Marc Antony. (“SO AN”) And I’m wondering now, basically, I’m definitely — (“WELL YOU KNOW MY”) you know me. I never dated consistently — I never had, you know, a sex partner. Let’s face it. (“GIVE” “MY”) It’s almost like He was keeping people away from me because He’s sort of territorial. But I’m not quite sure who He is. (“BECAUSE”) The phenomena in Oklahoma basically assumed many different spirits’ voices. But He’s known under the name Mighael, which is like a collection of different entities. (“WHICH IS SORT OF LIKE A GOD”) In the beginning there was God and He created the angels, I guess. And then He created the universe for His mankind experiment. Basically, there are also aliens and fairies and people like that but I’m not really quite sure exactly where the truth is. I just know that He’s a very loving, ambivalent, jealous, emotional God. But I can’t quite decide if He, Himself, can incarnate — (“IN”) an individual Being or that’s the reason why — no, actually I have heard that yes, He does have a carnate Being but I’m not quite sure how that relates to me. If God is the one who is my soulmate or (“IF JUST”) if Mighael the angel is. That’s where I am right now with my project.
L: Gotcha. (“SO”) So you’re saying that Michael or God is keeping you for —
Q: Well, God proved He existed to me.
L: — Himself?
Q: I don’t know. I don’t know if it’s Mighael or God. Or both. I just know that God proved His existence to me. I’ve had insect phenomena, burning bushes, I’ve gone through (“WITH”) the act of redemption. He revealed all my sins to me, (“WHICH IS”) which usually you have to wait until you die. It wasn’t fun. (“MY” “I”) He’s playing cybersex with me. There are books about the subject that are available. I’m sort of like the New Age Jesus. Son of Man. Mabus. I don’t know if you’ve done any research in that area, especially being Jewish. Jesus was Jewish.
L: I know.
Q: I don’t know if I have any Jewish ancestry. I have somebody — (“I”)
Q: What — probably? (“PROBABLY”)
L: Well, no — I mean (“NOT” “ONE”) we now all are sort of intermingled so much.
Q: Exactly. And we all come from Adam and Eve, who He’s still pissed-off about. So, anyway — (“SO THEN ANYWAY”) this is what my book is about. (“AND”) So what’s your impression, basically? Do you think He chose a good person to help Him with the project?
L: I’m not in a position to judge. And does one question God? (“I DON’T KNOW”)
Q: I have a feeling when my book comes out there are going to be a lot of people asking a lot of questions. And I don’t blame them. But I think my book speaks for itself because it really is a documentary account of the experience.
L: There are always opinions about — (“YOU KNOW”) and people will think what they may. But if something holds itself true for you —
L: — then who is anyone else to really question?
Q: I guess what I should be — oh, by the way — and I still feel very strongly about the ‘Chucky’ project so, if I can do anything, I will. (“I MEAN”) Sherry Lansing hasn’t returned my call yet or answered my letter. I’m actually going to try to sneak into one of those market research screenings (“HIS”) to see if I can sort of nudge her along. Do you think that’s a good idea?
L: My sense is that most people — when they’re approached in a sort of out of business situation — especially at that level — generally don’t respond in a positive way.
Q: Oh boy — so maybe I shouldn’t — what do you think I should do then?
L: I think at this juncture the best thing in that quarter is probably to (“TO”) pursue it through normal channels.
Q: But I tried that. (“DROP THE” “VERY”) You know what? But the thing is, though, (“IT WAS LIKE”) this person (“WITH THE”) from the market research company was put into my path, basically. So that’s why I guess I’m going to do it.
L: Ultimately —
Q: I know I might be thrown out or whatever. (“BUT I’M GOING TO GO”) I’m going to go ahead and try it. At this point — the Entity told me to call Don, which I guess is you, (“RIGHT”) and to call Barry and Sherry. (“AND”) Your wife told me it was Barry Diller. Because I thought it was Barry London.
L: Well, it probably was.
Q: Exactly. Anyway, he also chose my agent who is also named Sherri. He said, “GIVE SHERRY THE BOOK.” So, anyway, I want to do everything I can to get the book to both of them just to cover all bases. I better eat. I haven’t been eating.
( . . . )
L: What I’m saying is that I believe that in one way or another we all are doing God’s work here. However, I’m very cautious in saying that everything that we do is God’s work because I think that some of the most horrendous acts that mankind has committed have been explained by the perpetrators of those acts as “God told me to do this.”
Q: By the way, if you want a piece of pizza go ahead and take one.
L: Thanks. I just think that we have a highly developed brain that has been taught right from wrong and can discern good from evil. And I just —
Q: If God told you to go out — (“AND LIKE”) kill someone on the street, would you do it?
Q: I would not either.
L: You know. But I mean there are many people who have claimed that they have heard God talking to them and telling them to commit these heinous acts.
Q: Okay — right — right —
L: And I find that disturbing because that is a level that I don’t believe.
Q: But there are also people like Joan of Arc and Christopher Columbus who saw a white light above America — you know.
L: Well, because I think that we are all motivated by a higher vision. (“BUT”) And there are murderers who have killed — what society might construe as ‘bad people.’ (“BUT”) I don’t necessarily believe that it is our work as human beings to lie.
Q: Do you think when people say that they’ve heard the voice of God that they’re delusional or schizophrenic? Or do you think they actually hear a voice?
L: I think that they hear a voice. What that voice is I don’t know. But I think they hear a voice.
Q: Have you ever heard any voices?
L: Well, I like to think of a lot of the voices that I hear as being my conscience.
Q: Do you ever hear your conscience?
L: Certainly. (“AND WHAT IS IT”)
Q: Say words or (“DO YOU JUST”) is it just impressions?
L: It’s — oh, I don’t know. I mean it’s almost like a dream. (“AND WHO IS SAYING” “D”) “Do you dream in color or in black and white?”
Q: Right. (“I DON’T KNOW”) Do you dream in color or in black and white? That’s a good question too. I dream in color.
L: Actually, I’m told that we only dream in black and white.
Q: My dreams are like movies.
L: But I —
W: Can I get you anything else again, gentlemen?
Q: No, that’s fine. (“TIE” “IN Q”)
L: Sue is calling. (“O” “ME A”) Let me just return the page. (“K”)
( . . . )
Q: What did Sue want? (“YE[S] SHE”)
L: First of all, she sends her best. (“O” “I”) And she was just — it wasn’t an emergency. She was calling because she was curious how we did on the Screen Actors Guild Award nomination.
Q: Oh really? You mean Columbia? (“YES”)
L: And we did well. Out of the five awards that we had a chance to be nominated for, we came away with four. (“SO”)
Q: Emma Thompson —
L: Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, the cast of “Sense and Sensibility” and Don Cheadle for Best Supporting Actor in “Devil in a Blue Dress.”
Q: Wow. And what was the one that was a disappointment?
L: Nicole Kidman.
Q: That’s interesting. I wonder why she didn’t get nominated. It’s always interesting to me which people are nominated and which people aren’t nominated so it will be very interesting to look at the list. Like Kathy Bates — do you know if Kathy Bates was nominated?
L: She was not.
Q: She was not? What about the supporting actress from the same movie?
L: Nobody from “Delores Clayborne.”
Q: And were there any other oversights? (“LIKE”) Jonathan Pryce from “Carrington”? He wasn’t nominated either?
L: Nicolas Cage. Anthony Hopkins. (“OH RIGHT”)
Q: For “Nixon.” (“UH-HUH”)
L: James Earl Jones.
Q: There are always some surprising omissions. Like last year — or was it the year before last? “Forrest Gump” — I was so surprised when it didn’t get a supporting actress Academy Award nomination.
Q: You know? That was very surprising. There have always been big surprised and upsets over the years.
L: That’s what makes it so interesting.
Q: I sometimes wonder if maybe it’s (“IF”) God chooses the movie He wants to win. (“YOU KNOW” “PROBLEM”)
L: I think mankind is the most interesting thing. (“I”) I really think on bits and pieces of things like the Academy Awards. (“AND EVERYTHING ELSE”) I really think that we’re all operating on — (“YOU KNOW”) those of us who have a vision — and I think (“YOU KNOW”) we all — well, most of us who strive to accomplish things have some sort of vision.
Q: And what movie was your favorite movie of the year? Not including work-related.
L: Well, so far? You mean, the one I really think —
L: — is the biggest (“IT’S HAR[D]”) entertainment. (“I’M A BIG”) I am a big fan (“WELL YEAH”) of “Sense and Sensibility.”
Q: Not including “Sense and Sensibility” because I know, like, my brother Michael — whatever film he’s working for he can’t help thinking it is the best film of the year. So not including that film what was your favorite movie of the year? (“WELL”) “Babe”?
L: I haven’t seen them all yet.
Q: “Apollo 13”?
L: I like a lot of them. Not as the — I mean I found “Leaving Las Vegas” to be very interesting and filled with great performances and determination. (“GOD”)
Q: And we worked on “Internal Affairs.”
L: Yeah. (“NO” “ANY”) I’m a big admirer of Mike Figgis. I think “Apollo 13” was very well-made and very entertaining.
Q: Have you ever worked with Ron Howard or Brian Grazer? I interviewed Brian for the “Boomerang” press kit. He seemed very nice. I guess they made their big splash with — (coughs)
Q: Oh my goodness. This is so hot. There are some spices in the pizza but, anyway. (“SO UM”) Did you see the movie “Seven”?
L: Not yet. What did you think of that?
Q: I didn’t see it. It wasn’t one of the films that Mighael thought I should see. I’ve sort of turned my life over to Mighael. And so, basically, He’s the one who’s sort of directing me in His movie. (“HARD”)
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THERE IS AN UNACCOUNTABLE BLANK PORTION ON THE TAPE HERE.)
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: TAPE #52, SIDE #2 ENDS HERE.)