In case you doubted it, Morgan Freeman is holier than thou.
Most of us have stolen something in our lifetime, be it a pack of gum or a neighbor’s Wi-Fi, but not Freeman. Thursday night at the premiere of his latest film, “Going in Style,” the Oscar winner revealed that he lacks this shared experience.
“I have never successfully stolen anything, really,” he said on the carpet, which was hosted by New Line Cinema and Village Roadshow Pictures at the SVA Theatre. “I’ve tried a couple of times and just came to the conclusion that that was never going to be my bag.”
Despite pitfalls in mastering the art of the five-finger discount, Freeman plays a retired steel worker-turned-swindler in the film. Freeman and his costars, Alan Arkin and Michael Caine, play three retirees who organize a spiteful bank robbery after their pension fund fails.
Theft may have been new for Freeman, but Caine was a tad more familiar with pulling off a heist. “I used to steal apples when I was a little boy,” he said. “I was in London. I was evacuated to the country in the Blitz. You know, when the Germans started bombing London, and all of the boys were taken away.”
But Caine never stole again, and he is at odds with the morality of it all. “My mother always said to me, ‘You don’t want something of someone else’s.’ She always made me very proud of the fact that whatever I had was mine, and never belonged to anyone else,” he explained. “So, I’m the least likely person to be a thief, and none of these [characters] are likely thieves. It’s just a certain financial situation, and that’s one of the attractions. It’s not all just straight laughs, but it is a lot of them.”
Director Zach Braff noted that working with Freeman, Caine and Arkin was as banter-heavy as one could predict. “They were just cracking up all over the place,” he said. “They’re like teenagers.”