Talk Talk Talk Talk Talk Myself to Death: Mike Wallace Interviews

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Mike Wallace Interviews

Mike Wallace turned 90 years old last week. His reputation as a rigorous and uncompromising interviewer on 60 Minutes is legendary, but that's not where he built that reputation. On radio and in the early days of television, he was a jack of all trades, acting, announcing, hosting game shows and morning shows. But he got started building his reputation as an tough interviewer in the '50s with Night Beat, a local show in New York, and then The Mike Wallace Interview on ABC. He'd talk to the various prominent people of the day, such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Margaret Sanger, Salvador Dali, Reinhold Niebuhr, and even Henry Kissinger when he was still at Harvard. A couple of months ago, the University of Texas put a number of these interviews online. They're fascinating, and it's interesting to see how confrontational he's willing to be. Although there are still interviewers willing to ask difficult questions, there aren't very many of them. Take a special look at how much Charlie Rose borrowed from the format.

If these intrigue you, there are more Wallace interviews available from other sources. Not too long ago, I happened upon one he did with Ayn Rand that's not included here. The ones that are here are fascinating enough for the time being that I haven't gone looking too far afield as yet.


Post a Comment

<< Home