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Clint Eastwood makes my day

By Jennie L. Phipps ·
Tuesday, June 17, 2014
Posted: 3 pm ET

At 84, Clint Eastwood isn't sitting on his laurels, taking naps and complaining about his Social Security. He's still in the game and an inspiration for anybody worried about growing old.

This week, ahead of the release of his latest movie, "Jersey Boys," he offered The Associated Press this retirement planning advice: "If you tell yourself, 'I'm too old to do that,' bulls---, you're not too old to do anything."

© Randy Miramontez/

To direct, 'you can be 21 or 81'

Age has made him a better director, Eastwood says. "You have more experience as you get older. You have more to draw on, as long as you don't lose your faculties. You can play on that if you're lucky enough genetically or you take good enough care of yourself, or a combination of the two. You can go ahead and experiment with things. There's so many different stories to tell out there. You can be 21 or 81."

It isn't the first time Eastwood has talked about retirement and the challenges of aging in Hollywood. “Everybody wonders why I continue working at this stage," he told Warner Home Video in 2010. "I keep working because there's always new stories ... And as long as people want me to tell them, I'll be there doing them.”

In 2005, at age 74, Eastwood became the oldest person to win an Academy Award for directing -- for "Million Dollar Baby." He said on Oscar night, "We're taking over. The AARP and me."

A shoutout for the 'senior guys'

At the same time, he appealed to younger industry executives not to forget older artists: "I'd like to say to the various financiers, don't forget the senior guys. The senior guys and gals are there, willing to do their best work for you."

Films directed by Eastwood have grossed about $1,294 million, according to Box Office Mojo. That's an impressive total for anyone -- not just a "senior guy."

The next time you're feeling like you're on the downward slide, let this wisdom attributed to Eastwood make your day: “I'd like to be a bigger and more knowledgeable person 10 years from now than I am today. I think that, for all of us, as we grow older, we must discipline ourselves to continue expanding, broadening, learning, keeping our minds active and open.”

Or better yet, think about Eastwood's advice to the young cop in the 1990 film "The Rookie": "If you want a guarantee, buy a toaster."

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connie cross
June 29, 2014 at 11:26 am

I hope you never retire, I think I have seen every one of your movies and loved them all. I am 79 and worked until I was 76.
Thank God we have you and many years to come.

Tex Gilmore
June 29, 2014 at 10:43 am

Never retire! What a great man for the ages and a great American! As Clint once said "Are you going to draw those pistols or whistle Dixie".

Janice McPhee
June 29, 2014 at 10:29 am


I have admired your work since you first appeared on the screen. You have so much going for with your many talents in acting, music and most of all directing. If you were a stock company (Malpaso) I would certainly invest in it. Jersey Boys was wonderful you never disappoint. But I must say your acting in Bridges of Madison County was one of my favorites of your acting roles. It was not a chick flick as you have said because the acting between you and Streep was so well done it could be appreciated by both sexes. Grand Torino should have been awarded an Oscar. Live long and continue to entertain us fans we are forever grateful. Janice McPhee

Simmie Morris
June 29, 2014 at 10:09 am

Well, I'm bot quite as old as you Clint, but I Retired from the Army in 1991 and Retired from the Post Office in 2013, and am still pretty active. Do gardening and yard work and still help my Brother-In-Law with Brick laying sometimes! When are you going to make another goooood Western? They are dying out! keep up the good work.

Dee Lawrence
June 29, 2014 at 9:24 am

Way to go Clint, They don't make them like you anymore. You speak your mind & tell the honest truth about how you feel. In todays world you hardly know which is the truth they are telling. Just love your work in all aspects. love your thinking about life in general. Keep up the good work! Bless you & stay well Your the best.

Maggie De Vore
June 29, 2014 at 8:48 am

My God how good it is to hear someone make sense, not just in Hollywood, but everywhere!! I think the situation is such that the younger guys/girls without experience don't cost as much as the older, wiser, experienced bunch. All corporations do it -- the minute the older person starts costing too much, they bring in a young 'un. Then spend thousands figuring out how to get the him/her working like the older one. Ho Hum!!

As for being old -- as long as we are active, curious, enthusiastic, compus mentis, laugh-a-lot, and remember that between Mother Nature and Father Time -- all we have to do is live, laugh, love and be happy,

Julie Hisey
June 29, 2014 at 8:38 am

Thank you, dear Clint Eastwood! On June 17, 2014, I celebrated
my 85th birthday. Today I just read your article re productivity
in aging. At present I am working on a novel, weed and plant our
beautiful flower garden, prepare dinner each night for my husband
and me, take care of three cats, lots of morning birds as
well as our hummingbirds who spend summers with us, a visiting
deer, photograph local areas and animals (photos are printed in
local paper), read a book every week, and, if possible, select
a Clint Eastwood movie to watch late at night. I'm working
toward another 20 years of accomplishment and health, and thank
Clint Eastwood for his encouragement. He's spectacular!

shirley f.
June 29, 2014 at 8:25 am

He's still a hottie, always has been.

ruth davis
June 29, 2014 at 8:00 am

true appreciation for a god given life that has not been wasted. thank you for your many years of entertainment.

Mildred Christoffersen
June 29, 2014 at 6:11 am

Clint Eastwood has always been 1 of my favorite actors. You go Clint. Stay active in life, keep a good sense of humor. When u do something kind of foolish, laugh and go on. Smile, it's good for u, it usually makes others feel good, too.