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Veteran actor, activist, kick-ass grandma, table tennis entrepreneur Susan Sarandon is a busy woman and you’d think that after 40 years in show business she’d get a little jaded. That is so not the case. Sarandon, who stars in the upcoming The Last of Robin Hood alongside Dakota Fanning and Kevin Kline, talked with The Daily Beast to discuss the film, but it’s what she said when they got off topic that’s interesting. From a love affair with Ziggy Stardust to social justice to taking ‘shrooms, here’s five reasons why the Oscar-winner is the coolest lady in cinema.
She dated The Hunger-era David Bowie.
“He’s worth idolizing. He’s extraordinary. That was a really interesting period. I wasn’t supposed to have kids, and I’m the oldest of nine and had mothered all of them, so I wasn’t ever in a mode to where I was looking to settle down and raise a family, so that definitely changes the gene pool you’re dipping into. But Bowie’s just a really interesting person, and so bright. He’s a talent, and a painter, and… he’s great.”
She knows where the party is.
“[Burning Man’s] fabulous. I can’t go this year because my daughter’s having a baby around that time, so I don’t think I’d feel very free to indulge if I was waiting for a message to see if she’s gone into labor. I went all around on a Segway and a bicycle, which was great, and even though people sometimes recognized me and said, ‘Oh, it’s so cool you’re here!’ it wasn’t like walking the streets of New York. The art was amazing. You’ll find fantastical stuff like four-story women, and when the light comes up, a half-naked woman with a parasol. Despite the fact that there was more of a police presence there, it was a lot of fun and I’d definitely go back.”
She’s big into social justice.
“I’ve been working a lot on the issue of homelessness and the hidden homeless in New York, and some of it will be about the hidden homeless, and trying to dispel myths of who’s homeless and how they got there. The first cause is the lack of low-income housing, the second is health care, the third is domestic violence, and the fourth is mental illness. And then it’s alcohol and drugs. So, I think de Blasio is going to focus a lot on low-income housing, which will make a big difference.”
She’s got an enlightened views on drugs.
“I’m not new to the idea of mushrooms. I don’t really like chemical things, really. Timothy Leary was a friend of mine, so that acid was nice and pure, but I’m not really looking for chemicals, and I don’t like to feel speedy. But I’ve done Ayahuasca and I’ve done mushrooms and things like that. But I like those drugs in the outdoors—I’m not a city-tripper. My attitude about marijuana or anything is, ‘Don’t be stoned if you have to pretend you’re not,’ so I’d never do drugs if I was taking care of my kids. I like doing it in the Grand Canyon, or in the woods. You want to be prepared and not have responsibilities. It does remind you of your space in the universe—your place in the universe—and reframe things for you. I think you can have some very profound experiences.”
Her dog has one of the best accounts on Twitter.
Just check it out. You’ll see.